Review - Steve Vai @ the Fillmore (10/13/16)

Steve Vai (Photo: Kevin Keating)
There are very few shows that I can remember gushing over, but last night’s performance by Steve Vai at the Fillmore honestly ranks among the best I’ve seen — certainly the best I’ve seen this year! And that's remarkable since we just covered Steve's earlier tour this year with Generation Axe; a show that included Nuno Bettencourt, Zakk Wylde, Yngwie Malmsteen, and Tosin Abasi! And for those who don't recognize the name, Vai has contributed (or been lead) guitar for artists such as Frank Zappa, David Lee Roth, Whitesnake, and Ozzy Osborne. But his 1990 solo release, Passion & Warfare (iTunes), ranks as one of the seminal instrumental guitar albums ever created. It garnered critical acclaim, reached #18 on Billboard's Top 200, and won numerous awards and accolades. But due to the release and subsequent tour support of Whitesnake's Slip of the Tongue (iTunes) '89 release -- an album and tour that saw Steve as the lead guitarist -- Steve never found the time to dedicate a tour to support his Passion & Warfare album. Until now!
Steve Vai (Photo: Kevin Keating)
As I've written in the past, Passion & Warfare was an early influence and still ranks as a favorite of mine so it was an incredible event to mark the 25th anniversary of the album last night with a nearly sold out crowd at the Fillmore. The evening started promptly at 8pm with the incredibly talented Tony MacAlpine, another guitar virtuoso, warming up the crowd before Vai took the stage at 9pm.
Steve Vai (Photo: Kevin Keating)
Steve himself warmed up the crowd with his first four songs before launching into the entirety of the Passion & Warfare album. And throughout the show, Vai was joined virtually via pre-taped videos featuring Brian May, Joe Satriani, John Petrucci, and Frank Zappa. And both Jeff Watson (of Night Ranger) and Tony MacAlpine joined Steve on stage to jam towards the end of the evening.

Unbelievably, Steve's set was a full 2.5 hours long but flew by in the blink of an eye! The tour runs through December -- you can check out the remaining dates here -- and you won't want to miss this show!

Additional pictures can be found on our Facebook page here.
Steve Vai Setlist The Fillmore, San Francisco, CA, USA 2016

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