YNGWIE MALMSTEEN: 'I don't collaborate with people'
In a new interview with Sonic Perspectives, legendary Swedish guitarist Yngwie Malmsteen was asked if he would ever want to collaborate again with such musicians as Derek Sherinian (keyboards) and John Macaluso (drums). He responded: “No, ‘cause I don’t collaborate with people. I write all parts. Even when I hire people such as them, when they were hired to record with me, then I wrote the parts and sounds and so forth.
“Listen, I never say never to anything, but right now this is exactly where I wanna be.”
Malmsteen also spoke about his reluctance to play a fashionable style of music, preferring instead to forge his own path.
“The thing is that I’ve done this for such a long time, and I was a very accomplished musician already — very young, but very accomplished; I was in junior high, I think — when the first punk wave came, SEX PISTOLS and stuff,” he explained. “And I was going, ‘What the fuck is this? Why don’t you tune the guitar? Why do you sing like that?’ And then, of course, that wore out. And then in 1991, the same exact thing happened again with the grunge wave. So, obviously, as you might already have figured out, I’m not a follower — I don’t follow trends. If anything, I make trends; I don’t follow. And I’ve always been very clear in my vision on where I wanna go and what I wanna do. And my art is too important to me to dilute with trying to follow other things. So I just don’t do that.”
Four years ago, Jeff Scott Soto, who sang on Yngwie’s first two albums, 1984’s “Rising Force” and 1985’s “Marching Out”, engaged in a war of words with the Swedish guitarist over the fact that Malmsteen claimed in an interview that he “always wrote everything,” including the lyrics and melodies, and simply hired various vocalists to sing his material. Soto told the “US American Made Guitars” show that “it’s false information” to suggest that he contributed nothing to Yngwie’s early albums “because we co-wrote [some of] those songs together. I actually authored those songs,” he said. “For him to say, ‘I wrote every lyric, every melody,’ it’s absolute falsity. And he’s speaking out of whatever anger or whatever throwaway conversation he might be having, but when it’s put on text, it comes across as very crude and very arrogant. So, of course, I don’t take that kind of stuff too personally.”
In the days after Yngwie’s original interview with Metal Wani was published on BLABBERMOUTH.NET, several of the guitarist’s other former singers — including Joe Lynn Turner and Tim “Ripper” Owens — responded on social media, with Turner describing Malmsteen’s statements as “the rantings of a megalomaniac desperately trying to justify his own insecurity.” This was followed by a retort from a member of Yngwie’s management team, who wrote on Malmsteen‘s Facebook page that the three vocalists “came out enraged, spitting insults and profanities” at the guitarist because “Yngwie said something that they didn’t like.” The management representative added: ” It’s very unfortunate that these past hired vocalists must resort to mudslinging and insults to elicit any kind of media attention towards them. Such classless, puerile words are ungentlemanly at best and absolutely disgraceful at worst.”
Yngwie’s new album, “Parabellum”, will be released on July 23 via Music Theories Recordings/Mascot Label Group. Only four of the songs on the LP feature vocals. The album title is Latin, translating as “Prepare For War”.
After working with some of the top hard singers of the past four decades, Yngwie now handles much of the lead vocals himself in his own band, backed by a lineup that includes keyboardist Nick Marino, bassist/vocalist Ralph Ciavolino and drummer Brian Wilson.
Last month, Yngwie announced a month-long fall 2021 U.S. tour. Support on the trek will come from former MARILYN MANSON and current ROB ZOMBIE guitarist John 5.