interview with Vinnie Moore
the most influential guitarist of the Shredder boom
A guitar personality who is not only known for his concerts and album releases.
He is also known as a member of the UFO group since 2003, as well as a hired player when he went on a tour with Alice Cooper called the Operation Rock'N'Roll tour. He recorded the Hey Stoopid album with Alice Cooper in the same year.
Alan – Hi Vinnie. Apart from the guitar, what other musical instrument do you play?
Vinnie – Only the guitar. And a little bass of course.
Alan - Readers can read how you got into music in your biography at https://vinniemoore.com/about. Tell us how time went by and tell us something about how you started to play.
Vinnie – I started taking guitar lessons when I was 13. I always loved music as a kid for as far back as I can remember. Then eventually the first albums I bought were by The Beatles, Deep Purple, Led Zeppelin, and Queen. This made me want to play the guitar. I quickly fell in love with playing and always wanted to learn new things and to get better at it. After I had been playing for close to 2 years, I got really serious and began practicing for 2 hours a day. From there it continued to become more of an obsession and I started playing more and more each day. there was a period where I was playing from 8 to 12 hours a day. Definitely a little crazy.
Alan – Your latest album is called Double Exposure released in 2022. How is it different from your previous albums?
Vinnie – This is the first solo album with vocals. I started with 6 songs and have a vocal and an instrumental version of each one. Stylistically, I think it continues down the path of my recent albums SOUL SHIFTER, AERIAL VISIONS, and TO THE CORE.
Alan – Did you record the entire Double Exposure album in your studio? Or elsewhere? And who helped you with him?
Vinnie – I recorded all guitars in my studio. I prefer to work alone because that is the way I focus the best. No distractions. Drums were recorded by Bob Stander at Parcheesi Studios in Huntington, NY. There are a few different bassists on the album and they all recorded their parts in their own studios. Same with John Cassidy’s keyboards.
Alan – You're a well-known person, so tell us how the Double Exposure album has been received?
Vinnie – It has been received really well. There are some people that prefer the instrumental half, and then others that like my songs with vocals better. So there is a lot of music there for both. But in general people seem to like it overall.
Alan – Are you touring with this album? And if so, where are the stops? Where are you presenting it at concerts this year?
Vinnie – I will be doing a tour in Europe in September and October. All the dates aren’t in yet so I haven’t announced it. We will have a singer and will play some songs off of Double Exposure and of course do a lot of my instrumental songs as well. Stay tuned to my online pages as details will be coming soon.
Alan – Your own creation, then a player for hire and still working in the UFO group. How do you keep up with everything?
Vinnie – I am really thankful that I have been able to do solo stuff as well as playing in UFO, and also being a guest on recordings. Luckily it has usually not been difficult to schedule things. There has always been windows of time where I can fit things in.
Alan – I will ask about UFOs. How did you get into this band? Did they audition or did they approach you directly?
Vinnie – A mutual friend recommended me and I was asked to send Phil some of my music. I burned a CD with a bunch of my songs and sent it to him. A couple weeks later I got a call saying that he would like me to join the band. Then we started talking on the phone and planning for the first record which turned out to be YOU ARE HERE. I started sending new song ideas and then we eventually got together in a studio in Germany to start rehearsing and recording.
Alan – When you go concerts or tours, which were the most important for you?
Vinnie – They are all important in my mind. Anywhere there is an audience is important to me. I have never went onstage thinking “oh tonight doesn’t really matter much because we’re are in a small town”. I go out and try to do the best I can for every show. There are certain big cities that are important for the band because there are music industry people there, but everyone tries to have a great show anytime we’re onstage. If you don’t feel a show is important, then you don’t deserve to be onstage.
Alan - You've pretty much traveled the world. The difference in audience and performance? USA, Europe, Asia, Japan?
Vinnie – Japan is definitely different because they are very polite and don’t make a lot of noise because they don’t want to be distraction I think. Other than that, it’s often hard to tell where you are because fans all over the world seem to be similar. There are a few places like Spain, Italy and Brazil where they have a certain type of passion that you can feel.
Alan – Just in a nutshell. When you went (are going) on tour with Alice Cooper, UFO etc... insights?
Vinnie – The Cooper tour was in 1991 so quite a long time ago. But I do have a lot of good memories of that and it was great to play with Alice and the very talented band. There are 20 years of UFO memories and it is hard to even get my head around it all. I hope we will do some more shows in 2024 but we’ll see what happens. At this point I like to look forward most of the time because looking back can be a little sad for me. I am always thinking about living in the moment and what comes next.
Alan – Your preparation at home for the tour? Do you take any talismans with you?
Vinnie – I usually rehearse the songs every day by playing along with the recorded versions. First off to make sure I remember all the parts and then once I do, repetition helps it sink in to the point where I don’t have to think about it anymore. Then it just flows and I can feel it and not be thinking about hitting all the notes. I don’t usually take any good luck charms or whatever.
Alan – In the summer, for the summer, where are you going to play? And somewhere nearby? Czech Republic, Germany, Austria, Slovakia?
Vinnie – It will be starting in September and I think I will be playing all of these countries.
Alan - Have you played in the Czech Republic or Slovakia?
Vinnie – Yes I have played Slovakia a couple times and Czech Republic many times. Great people there and great beer. (laughs).
Alan – Do you know any Czech or Slovak artists? David Král, Jan Hammer, Peter Lipa?
Vinnie – I of course am familiar with Jan Hammer. I was a huge Jeff Beck fan and got the WIRED album just after I started playing guitar. Jan’s playing on that is amazing. For a while, I actually though that a lot of his keyboard solos on that were Jeff on guitar because the keyboard solos had a similar tone. I was too young to know that it was a keyboard and not guitar. At a certain point I realized it wasn’t Beck playing some of the parts that I thought were him. I will check out the others you have mentioned, thanks.
Alan – You also have your own brand of guitars. How did you get there? The response of musicians to this brand?
Vinnie – I have had a few signature models over the years with different guitar companies. So it is not my brand per se, they are made by fairly big guitar companies but to my specs. Right now I am with Kramer guitars
Alan – Your greatest memory of the place you have played so far? And why?
Vinnie – Honestly, there are so many great memories that it is impossible for me to name one, or even 5. I have so many great recollections of being on stages all over the world. I feel so fortunate to have been blessed with this. You dream of this when you are a kid and I am one of the lucky ones that got to live many of my dreams
Alan – Thanks for an interesting interview, maybe not the last.
Vinnie – Thanks so much Alan. I hope to see you later in the year. All the best to you.