March 13, 2007:

Have been mixing the “The Attitude Song.”

The work on this one started 15 years ago when I first orchestrated it for an orchestra in Rochester.  Without much rehearsal time back then the piece suffered so I figured I needed to re-orchestrate it.

When the Aching Hunger project came up I dusted off the old arrangement for this one and tweaked it a bit. It went through some further tweaks and then Tom Trapp cleaned it up in Finale.

I could never hear the intricacies of the arrangement because whenever it was being played, I was playing along. With a song like this you really have to think about what you’re doing and where it’s going and just lock into the drums. And plus, my guitar is the loudest thing in the world sometimes.

The arrangement always sounded very odd and I could never quite wrap my “what were your intentions with this Vai???”-brain around it.

After taking it apart in the mix and fixing some wrong notes and timing things in the orchestra, the arrangement exploded in my face. There it was, all those things I was thinking about 15 years ago when I first orchestrated it. Some of those ideas are so bizarre yet ultra-cool.

And here was the payoff, right in front of my steaming ears.  It made all those hours of all the work so worth it.

This does not sound like “orchestra music” one would expect when that phrase comes up. It’s something very different. It’s difficult to get an orchestra to work with an electric guitar and rock band. They are so different. It’s like comparing apples with beef yoghurt! But somehow it’s working in a 20th century kind of way.

I don’t know. You decide when you hear it.

And then I think that sometimes I just living on my own little island, on Venus.

Hey, you’re invited.