The second coming of the Vikings (a.k.a. Happy birthday, Yngwie)

…And this time around, the Vikings have guitars!

No, seriously.

Happy birthday to the man with no name.

Well, that is not entirely the truth. He has a name; only no one can pronounce it. Or write it, for that matter. So, after thanking all the gods for the copy/paste option, we can say – happy birthday, Yngwie Malmsteen!

Yngwie was born as Lars Johan Yngve Lannerbäck on June 30th, 1963 in Stockholm, Sweden. At the age of twelve, he decided to play around with his name a little, because – why not? So, he took his mother’s maiden name, Malmsten and altered it to Malmsteen. But why stop there? He also altered his third name into Yngwie, put it in the first place and finally became known as Yngwie Johan Malmsteen.

Yngwie’s musical work is mostly his solo career, although his beginnings were connected to the bands Steeler and Alcatrazz. He also appeared in Joe Satriani G3 project. But, his solo work is where he really shines. He released 19 studio albums, and he is considered to be one of the greatest electric guitar players in the world. And there is a good reason for that opinion, I might add.

And how does he make his famous guitar solos?

Let’s hear it from him: “If there’s a mistake and the solo’s good in every aspect – it’s got a good feel and there’s a little something special going on, then I just leave it alone. But if I do decide I want to do a second take, which I normally don’t want to do, that will be maybe because the first one I recorded just doesn’t totally kick my ass. If that happens, then I’ll just go on to the next song, or I’ll go downstairs and play pool or something. I’ve learned that lesson the hard way: Never ever try to force a solo!”

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Did you hear that? Never force a solo!

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