“Working with others, I felt like I was subtracting something, and not adding”: Yngwie Malmsteen says he no longer needs outside singers, producers or writers
Yngwie Malmsteen is all about doing it himself these days, as the Swedish guitarist reveals in a new interview he no longer needs outside singers, producers or writers when composing new music.
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Speaking to Classic Rock, the virtuoso shares the reasons he prefers to handle pretty much every aspect of his music himself nowadays, saying: “I’m a painter. I won’t do half a painting and call you up and say: ‘Dave, please finish it for me.’ Working with others, I felt like I was subtracting something, and not adding.”
“That’s often mistaken for egotism, but really it isn’t,” Malmsteen explains, adding, “Singers have a real problem with the fact that they are part of the ensemble, performing my music. They just don’t get it.”
“The way I work is different to everybody else. I can wake up in the middle of the night and hear a perfectly completed song — including the production. Therefore, I don’t need producers, outside writers, and I no longer need singers.”
He continues: “When I had singers, I wrote the vocal melodies the way I heard them in my head and taught them to [former Alcatrazz bandmate] Graham Bonnet or whoever.”
“Until I came to the States, I was the singer, guitar player and writer, [and] all I needed to do was hire a bass player and drummer. Over my career, there was only a small [period of time] when I used singers. It’s just easier to do it myself.”
While the guitarist did concede that “nobody is perfect,” he says that “people really don’t understand what I’m doing.”
“This is not a band. It hasn’t been a band since 1984. That’s strange for rock ‘n’ roll people to comprehend, but it’s how I work,” says Malmsteen.
Earlier this year, Malmsteen spoke about the temporary nature of his musical partnerships, saying he “never had a Paul McCartney-John Lennon moment,” though his collaborations have “all been great”.
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