Steve Vai and Yngwie Malmsteen performed at the Guitar Gods Festival this past Friday, February 19, where they treated fans to a cover of the Van Halen classic “Ain’t Talkin’ ’Bout Love.” You can catch a snippet of it in the fan-shot video below.
The Guitar Gods Festival was held in Miami Beach, Florida, and is the brainchild of April Malmsteen, Yngwie's wife and manager. Other performers included veteran bassist Rudy Sarzo, Ozzy Osbourne guitarist Gus G and Iron Maiden drummer Nicko McBrain.
The heart of the festival is an online competition where unknown guitarists battle to become the next Guitar God. Fans and an all-star panel voted on the contestants, and performances were presented at the festival by the finalists: Brad Jurjens, Elmo Karjalainen, Tyler Morris, Jorge Almarales, Joey Lodes, Pareidolia, Robert Rodrigo, Janne Nieminen and Emil Pohjalainen, and judge favorites Mrs. Smith and Dario Pardini.
Entrants paid a $25 submission fee, a portion of which benefits the April Malmsteen Foundation, which works to protect endangered species and their habitats around the globe.
In related news, Vai and Malmsteen will join forces with Zakk Wylde, Nuno Bettencourt and Tosin Abasi for the Generation Axe tour beginning on April 5 in Seattle. The tour will present 26 performances in North America during April and May. For complete information and dates, visit GenerationAxe.com.
UPDATE: The video has been taken down, but we have subbed in a pair of clips from the show. The first shows Vai performing “Racing the World,” from his The Story of Light release, and the second shows his first performance at the show.