Why Yngwie Malmsteen Doesn’t Like Working With Singers Anymore

July 3, 2024 - News

Guitar great Yngwie Malmsteen has worked with a number of vocalists over the years, but during his recent press conference at Hellfest, the musician explained why he prefers not to work with singers, and in a larger discussion, outside contributors. Much of it has to do with his own artistic vision.

The discussion initially started with a question about producing his own music, with Malmsteen sharing his thoughts on working with producers rather than self-producing.

“I’m not knocking producers. I think they’ve done a lot of things for a lot of bands,” stated the guitarist at one point, praising such acclaimed producers as Mutt Lange and Martin Birch. He then added, “The difference is I already have this in here (points to his head). So when I have someone else coming in, it doesn’t add, it dilutes. Some people may think I’m an egotist. No. The music is done. I record it. I play it. It’s done.”

Yngwie Malmsteen Breaks Down His Process

Malmsteen’s commentary then started to how he approaches his own work and how it differs from the construct that a lot of rock music falls into.

“In rock and roll, even if you’re a solo artist, like Ozzy Osbourne or whoever, they have songs written for them, they have producers and stuff like this. I don’t do that. I do everything. I actually do everything,” he explained.

He added, “It’s not because I’m an egotistic person that I don’t want anybody else to take the credit. No. It’s because instead of what you would say a traditional rock and roll Lennon-McCartney, Keith Richards-Mick Jagger (songwriting partnership) – I love all them guys; I think they’re fucking great – instead of what they did, I work more like an author, like let’s say Stephen King or Johann Sebastian Bach … So basically I’m like a painter or an author.”

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Why Yngwie Malmsteen Doesn’t Like Working With Singers

Throughout his career, Malmsteen has worked with numerous talented vocalists, ranging from Jeff Scott Soto, Mark Boals, Joe Lynn Turner, Mats Levin and Tim “Ripper” Owens amongst others, with Nick Marino most recently handling some of the vocal duties live. But, as stated prior, outside contributions often dilutes his initial vision.

“That’s why I don’t have co-writers and so on,” says Malmsteen. “Because when I did have that, every single time I came out unhappy and I wasn’t pleased with the result, and I only live once. So what I wanna leave behind, what I wanna create, what I wanna put out on records, what I wanna perform onstage, is something that is purely my expression because I have so much inside.”

He adds, “I want pure expression of myself, not diluted by having Elvis Presley in the band. Most singers think they’re Elvis Presley. They’re not. They’re just another instrument in my orchestra.”

Yngwie Malmsteen In 2024

Malmsteen is currently touring, wrapping up European dates with shows July 4 in Helsinki, Finland and July 6 in Sisil, Turkey. He then catches a breather until the Sept. 26 start of his 40th Anniversary North American tour in Fort Myers, Fla., with the trek running through Nov. 22. All dates and ticketing information can be found at Yngwie Malmsteen’s website.

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Gallery Credit: Chad Childers, Loudwire

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