Joe Satriani aims to respect the legacy of Eddie Van Halen on Sammy Hagar tour

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Guitarist Joe Satriani is set to join Sammy Hagar on his Best of All Worlds tour this summer, where they’ll be playing, among other things, songs from the Van Halen catalog. And despite his expertise with the instrument, Satriani doesn’t expect it to be easy.

“My task right now is trying to unravel the mystery of Eddie Van Halen‘s strange guitar playing,” Satriani tells Classic Rock in a new interview. “I spent decades avoiding how to learn this stuff so I wouldn’t copy it, and now all of a sudden I’m doing a crash course on the idiosyncrasies and the genius of his guitar work.”

He adds, “I know these songs but I’ve never actually played them. It’s a task.”

And while it won’t be easy, Satriani is happy to do it, sharing, “I can’t think of a (Van Halen) song that doesn’t put a smile on my face – it’s just a question of figuring out how to play them.”

Satriani says he can guarantee that fans who come to the shows will “see someone who’s hell-bent on being the most respectful guitar player to the legacy of Eddie and his playing.” 

He adds, “I have every intention of nailing everything, and when I can’t I’ll wink to the audience and they’re gonna know that one’s just gonna slip by.”

Sammy Hagar’s Best of All Worlds tour, which also features Van Halen’s Michael Anthony on bass and Jason Bonham on drums, kicks off July 13 in West Palm Beach, Florida. A complete list of dates can be found at redrocker.com.

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