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Book Review: “Strange Beautiful Music” by Joe Satriani

Today, I just finished reading “Strange Beautiful Music”. A rock memoir written by Joe Satriani.

I’ve been a fan of this guy’s music for years. He’s one of my biggest guitar heroes and inspirations. In fact, he was one of the top 5 guitarists that made me want to pick up the guitar and it was the album, “Surfin’ With the Alien” that did it to me. That album is such a masterpiece, it means a lot to me. I’ll never get tired of listening to that record.

Anyway, I’ve been meaning to read this book for a long while now and finally gotten around to it. Read it via the Ipad.

In this book, if you’re going to want to read about Joe’s personal life and read what his life is like outside of music… you’re gonna be very disappointed. This book is not about his personal life at all as you’re not gonna read any of that. In most rock memoirs over the years, they write everything about them. Not just music, most rocks stars would write everything about their life including their marriages, their troubles with drugs, sex and alcohol. You’re not gonna read any of that in Joe’s book. Joe does talk about his wife, Rubina and his son a lot but you’re not gonna see any photos of them or any of that stuff.

Joe’s goal with this book was that he mainly wanted to focus on the music alone. In this book, he would talk about how he recorded all of his studio albums. He wanted to show you what a musician’s life is like in a recording studio. He would take you behind the scenes of the recording of each album he did in his career. He would talk about all the gear he has used and how all of his songs were recorded. He would talk about everything in detail in the recording process. Very few rock memoirs would go behind the scenes of their albums but Joe just wanted to show all of his fans and supporters his secrets in recording. In his book, you’re not gonna read much stories of him on the road when he tours either.

I thought it was an interesting book and it’s a real eye opener of how a rock musician would record in a studio. Some of you would read that book and complain why Joe didn’t write about his actual life so we can get to know him? Well, think about it y’all. Joe is a professional musician and guitar player so there isn’t much of a personal life to talk about ’cause most of his entire life was all about “music”. Music was all he ever did. He spent most of his life in recording studios and on the road when touring so what else is there to talk about him? That’s all these guys do is play music, ya know? That’s who they are.

Yeah, I’m sure Joe has his personal problems in his private life like everyone else but maybe he prefers to keep that stuff to himself? Maybe he wants to keep his personal life private which is a smart thing to do. The only thing that he makes public is his music and that’s it. He didn’t want this to be a “tell-all” book like some were hoping. He did reveal why he went bald… all he said was that he shaved his head bald ’cause he thought it looked cool, that was pretty much it.

It’s a great book for any Satch fan or newbie. After reading this book, really makes me want to buy the rest of his studio albums and I only own five of them. Plus, he’s got a new album coming out this summer too which I’m excited to get. I’m a really big Satch fan ’cause I love how he makes his songs sound like actual songs when making instrumentals. He makes actual music and not just shredding even though he’s known for that too. I even saw Satch live in concert once a long time ago and I’ll never forget that show.

Check this book out!

Kev