The Difference Between Impossible and Difficult:
An Interview with Dave Weiner of the Steve Vai Band

Interview by Ray Van Horn, Jr. - April 2005


You may or may not be familiar with him now, but give it some time and Dave Weiner will soon be a household name. It's inevitable. You will soon find Dave splashed on the cover of your favorite guitar magazine just by his association as a six-year player in Steve Vai's band. On his own, Dave has released his first solo instrumental album, "Shove the Sun Aside." I'm going on record right now and saying that -- after listening to the playback of my interview with Dave -- he represents the future of guitar rock. Proficient but disciplined, he dices his notes carefully, not gratuitously. What he is gratuitous with is sharing his knowledge and personal anecdotes as a premiere musician in the making. I trust after reading this interview you will find Dave Weiner to be one of the homeboys of the guitar. 


RoughEdge.com: Hey, man, how are you doing?

Dave Weiner: Good, how are you, man?

RoughEdge.com: Can't complain. I've been listening to the CD all morning. Very nice, man.

Dave Weiner: Cool! Thank you very much!

RoughEdge.com: I guess let's pick up when Steve Vai asked you to join his band. You were attending classes at GIT …

Dave Weiner: Right.

RoughEdge.com: You were working as an intern for Vai's manager, is that correct?

Dave Weiner: Right, Ruta Sepetys, that's his manager.

RoughEdge.com: Okay, cool. So the offer comes after Steve Vai's heard your demo, your life takes a change for the better with a sweet opportunity. I guess let's begin at this point what your emotions were.

Dave Weiner: Well, it was a little bit of disbelief, a little bit of anxiety, you know? It didn't really sink in and it really didn't hit me that it was happening until I was at rehearsals for at least a couple of days that I'm not going to school anymore, that I'm actually making a living. Now I have to wake up and go to practice with Steve Vai every morning, and when it happened, actually the only people that I told were my family. I didn't really tell any of my friends because I was like, 'What if this doesn't work out, then leaving me look like an asshole, blah blah blah…'

RoughEdge.com: (laughs)

Dave Weiner: (laughs) So it took a little while for something like that to sink into me. Once it did, I thought 'Wow, this is amazing!' Definitely a dream come true, you know? I never in a million years thought I'd be playing in Steve Vai's band! I hoped that I'd make my living playing guitar in some format, you know what I mean?

RoughEdge.com: Right.

Dave Weiner: In a band or teaching or whatever, but this opportunity was beyond any expectations, so it was overwhelming and hard to believe! But it actually was happening and it was a damn good feeling! (laughs)

RoughEdge.com: Yeah. That's called being in the right place at the right time!

Dave Weiner: Exactly, man.

RoughEdge.com: It's not just clichι. I mean, you had no idea when Ruta hired you that she was working for Steve Vai at first, right?

Dave Weiner: No, I didn't. When I answered this ad for the internship, it didn't have any names on it. It just sounded good because it was going to allow me to make my own hours and just start meeting people, so I faxed my resume and she called me that night. She said her name and I said "That name sounds familiar," and she started listing off a few people that she manages and the last one she mentioned was Steve Vai and she was like, "Are you familiar with Steve Vai?" (laughs) I said "Of course I am!"

RoughEdge.com: Right! (laughs) Just a little!

Dave Weiner: Yeah! So that was definitely some kind of weird, you know, stars align fate kind of thing happening or something, you know? It's kind of hard to explain.

RoughEdge.com: Right on. Going back in time from that point, you had your own band in high school and you guys recorded an album. What was the name of that group?

Dave Weiner: Oh, it was lovely! This band actually…we got together right before I turned 13!

RoughEdge.com: (laughs)

Dave Weiner: So this was the heyday of all the hair bands and all that good stuff, so our band name was actually Sunset Strip! (laugh)

RoughEdge.com: Cool! (laughs)

Dave Weiner: It was right from the eighties influence and stuff like that, so we actually did record two full-length albums, you know, it was just for fun!

RoughEdge.com: Yeah, of course.

Dave Weiner: A hobby kind of thing. We got into this guy's hobby studio and it was a lot of fun! We played friends' parties and stuff like that. 

RoughEdge.com: Were those albums ever released officially?

Dave Weiner: No, no, no. 

RoughEdge.com: They become the basement tapes for when you become a bigger name, you know? 

Dave Weiner: Yeah! (laughs)

RoughEdge.com: The eBay hard-to-find Dave Weiner lost tracks from Sunset Strip! (laughs)

Dave Weiner: Right, right! Actually on this tour for a couple of days I'm in Boston. I'm meeting up with the drummer from that band who used to live right down the street and who I haven't seen in years! In Pittsburgh the bass player's going to be there, so it's crazy!

RoughEdge.com: Nice.

Dave Weiner: The only people I'm still not … and actually my brother was the rhythm guitar player … the singers I have no clue where they are, but the drummer and bass player I've kept in touch with here and there but this is the first time I'm going to be seeing them in … geez, I don't know, five or six years. 

RoughEdge.com: Tell your buddy in Pittsburgh I said "Go, Steelers!"

Dave Weiner: Oh, okay! (laughs)

RoughEdge.com: (laughs) I mean, at 16 you were giving classes in high school, man. God Almighty, tell me about this person that you were in high school aside from a prodigy.

Dave Weiner: Well, you know, I took lessons from myself! I started playing when I was 10 and then I took lessons from 10 to 14 and it just got to a point where my teacher couldn't teach me anything else, so I just started taking it upon myself to start furthering my guitar knowledge, so I was getting every single book I could get and you know, just started advancing my skills on the guitar. Then I was just playing around because of that band, so I started getting asked for lessons from a couple of different people, and so I started teaching and that just started piling up and it was a very cool thing. 

RoughEdge.com: Yeah.

Dave Weiner: I don't care if you know everything there is to know about guitar, that doesn't mean you're a good teacher, you know what I mean?

RoughEdge.com: Right.

Dave Weiner: So it was awesome for me because I really liked teaching it. It kind of let me hone my skills as a teacher and as in how to explain things and how to properly demonstrate different skills and techniques and have the theory actually make sense behind what people are playing. Now I've pretty much got it down and when I give lessons, a lot people … the lessons I give now, a lot my students are people who have put the guitar down for like 10 or 15 years because of marriage or careers or children, something like that, and they're just starting to pick it back up. They're like, 'You know, I was pretty good, I was pretty technically proficient, but I didn't know any theory and then I always kept getting into these ruts.' Of course, that's the most common story of them all.

RoughEdge.com: Right.

Dave Weiner: When I teach them the theory side of things and it just makes so much sense and it's so easy, they're like, 'Oh man, I can't believe I didn't pick that up before!' So it's really rewarding for me to connect the dots for them and I've got my style of teaching pretty much down so that it's black and white, you know? There's no filler. It's like, 'Okay, this is how this is and that's why you play like this,' or 'this is why this scale goes together,' and they're like, 'Oh, man, I should've known that from twenty years ago!' (laughs)

RoughEdge.com: (laughs)

Dave Weiner: But I really enjoying teaching when I'm off tour with Vai and I'm not doing anything of my own. In my home I have a couple of students that I still teach there. It's a lot of fun!

RoughEdge.com: Cool, man! When I was 13, I was playing air guitar! (laughs) You were more or less sent out from Dave-san to Dave Sensei in your teenage years! 

Dave Weiner: (laughs) That's right!

RoughEdge.com: I mean, what was that like amongst your peers?

Dave Weiner: Well, you know, it was a tradeoff because I sacrificed a lot of time with friends. I had a lot of friends who were all partying every weekend and doing all that stuff, not necessarily like partying with drugs and alcohol in high school, you know, just having fun in that way and I was more interested in guitar and getting good. I was just so focused back then, so it was a tradeoff. I sacrificed some fun in simple high school years and junior high years for the guitar, but it was worth it! (laughs)

RoughEdge.com: No doubt!

Dave Weiner: Now I work my ass off while I'm on tour and recording, but I definitely have fun! 

RoughEdge.com: Well, when you look at the grand perspective, what is high school but four … it seems like long years then, but it's over faster than you know it. In other words, you've done something with your life in those four years whereas most people coasted through then moved on, gotten jobs, lost contact with everybody much less in touch with their personal selves, you know what I mean?

Dave Weiner: Right, exactly, so I don't regret not spending more time with friends and stuff because you're right, that is a small portion of your life and people say that high school is the best years of your life or college is the best years of your life. That's pretty sad because that comes early in life and if those are the best ones and the rest of your 60, 70, 80 are not that good, that's kind of sad to me! (laughs)

RoughEdge.com: I'm with you, man. Life is what you make it in the moment.

Dave Weiner: Of course, exactly.

RoughEdge.com: Now, moving into your college years I find it interesting that you earned a Bachelor's in Accounting and yet end up as a renowned musician. I mention it because I've got a Bachelor's in Marketing and it was always with the intention of being a writer. To me, the degree was to insure I was never a starving artist, you know?

Dave Weiner: Right, right.

RoughEdge.com: Unfortunately I ended up in the mortgage industry where I'm trying to make my writing happen in every single moment of my spare time, so my question to you is, getting that degree, were you safeguarding your future just in case? I mean, crunching numbers versus crunching notes! (laughs)

Dave Weiner: Yeah, that was definitely the backup plan, just like you just said. That was the backup plan to make sure that if music never happened I still had something to fall back on. I mean, I was still pretty diligent in studying music and improving, but I wanted to do something else so that I could still make some money if I didn't … because if you get a music degree, what can you do? You can teach and that's about it.

RoughEdge.com: If you're lucky.

Dave Weiner: (laughs) Yeah, if you're lucky! So I wanted to do something else, I got an Accounting degree and have a general business background so I could still jump into any business job, so yeah, it was just like a security measure. 

RoughEdge.com: I preach that a lot to my musician and writer friends. Of course, I didn't back then! (laughs) I was so headstrong on being a writer and nothing else, but luckily I had sense talked into me to get that degree so I could make a living while I … you know what I mean?

Dave Weiner: Exactly! That's exactly what I felt! I didn't want to, I hated Accounting, but with the advice from my parents … now looking back, that was probably one of the smartest things I've ever done, so now I definitely appreciate it. At the time I was like, 'Oh, this sucks!'

RoughEdge.com: (laughs)

Dave Weiner: But now I definitely appreciate it.

RoughEdge.com: Now, there are a million questions we could dabble with about playing with Steve Vai. You've toured the world with him, you've played with other greats like Satriani, Billy Sheehan, Eric Johnson, Al Petrucci, Yngwie Malmsteen. You won a Grammy for Engineering Guitarist for "Whispering a Prayer" from "Alive in an Ultra World." Again, there's lots of questions we could generate here, but I want to talk about the aesthetics of playing with Steve Vai's band, you know, the crowds, the touring, the "Weiner Weiner" chants, basically a through Dave's eyes rendition of being in this band.

Dave Weiner: It's a different adventure almost every day. The format is pretty much the same. We wake up and we're in a different city, we're in a different venue, but the variables have all changed because it's a different city, it's a different venue, different people. For me, one of the greatest aspects of the show is the vibe and the energy that I get from the crowd fuels me and almost sets the mood for the show, because if we're in a sit-down kind of theater and we've played a lot of really nice theaters, if they have seats that's great, but the crowd definitely has a different mood when they're in seats as opposed to when they're in a general admission standing-room-only kind of place.

RoughEdge.com: Right.

Dave Weiner: Way different vibes! If they're sitting down, they're still enjoying it; there's no doubt they're still enjoying it, they're having a great time, but if they're standing up, they are much more prone to going nuts, you know, hands in the air and they're just throwing off a lot more energy! So that's one aspect of a show that I have come to appreciate, is the energy from the crowd; when it is so energetic, it's just so awesome. Again, the crowds who are sitting down in theaters, it's still just as good, it's just harder to read, you know what I mean?

RoughEdge.com: Absolutely.

Dave Weiner: So, as a quote-unquote "professional," you still have to put on the show like it's the best show ever and people are going nuts and all that stuff. You have to give them everything even though it doesn't seem like they're giving it all back, so that's my aspect of the show that really sticks out, that's not such a tangible kind of thing. The energy of the crowd is something I really feed off of. That's just one part of the whole touring aspect.

RoughEdge.com: No doubt.

Dave Weiner: Touring in general is definitely … I have to put myself in check and make myself realize how lucky and fortunate I am to be doing this because it can get a little tedious, even though most people reading this are going to go 'Oh my God, that's totally crazy! You're in a touring rock band seeing the world, blah blah blah,' and that's definitely true. That's why I have to put myself in check because those are very, very amazing things that most people will never get to do! 

RoughEdge.com: Right.

Dave Weiner: But what they don't realize is the behind-the-scenes kind of thing where you live on a bus, you live out of a suitcase for months at a time! You're in a tiny little bed in a bus that's constantly moving. Maybe there's a shower, maybe there's not. Maybe there's internet access to keep in touch and do business, maybe there's not. Maybe there's good food, maybe there's not! 

RoughEdge.com: (laughs)

Dave Weiner: There's those kinds of things that are kind of the backstage things that most people don't see. Before the show we get in a little huddle and some person gives a little benediction, you know, a little bit of advice or experience, whatever, just a couple of words before the show just to inspire. The last one I did we were in some place we definitely shouldn't have been in (laughs)! I mean, this place was an absolute shithole!

RoughEdge.com: (laughs)

Dave Weiner: I'm not naming any names, in fact, I can't even remember the name, but it was a tiny shithole, the roof was leaking all over the pedal boards and all sorts of stuff! But what I said was that the people who were coming here don't care what our day was like! They don't care that there weren't dressing rooms, there wasn't showers, there wasn't any internet, there wasn't any food! They don't give a shit about that! They come expecting us to give the best show like we're playing in Madison Square Garden or even with first-class accommodations. 

RoughEdge.com: Right, I'm sure.

Dave Weiner: They don't care what our day was like. We still have to go out and put on an amazing show! That's part of being a professional, is that you have to shove all the crap that happened during the day out of your mind and you do have to put on a great show. So even though fans don't take those kinds of things into relevance, we certainly do, and that's just part of touring. But I wouldn't trade the job for anything else. 

RoughEdge.com: Definitely, I mean, it's got to be kind of surreal to be looking around you and see Steve Vai and Billy Sheehan on the same stage as you! 

Dave Weiner: Oh yeah, of course. When I joined Steve's band, the year-and-a-half before that I was waiting four hours in line to see the G-3 Tour that was happening in '97! 

RoughEdge.com: Right on.

Dave Weiner: You know, just so I could get front row, and then I waited two hours afterwards just to get autographs, and then a year-and-a-half later, I'm walking into the studio with this exact same band that I was waiting all those hours to see! I'm not going to trade it for anything! (laughs)

RoughEdge.com: I feel you, man.

Dave Weiner: It's awesome to look onstage and see all of these amazing musicians like Tony MacAlpine and drummer Jeremy Colson, these guys are all just crazy musicians! I've just been trying to be a sponge the last six years and soak up every aspect of being in a band and how the whole thing happens, every aspect of touring and the business end of things, all that good stuff, so hopefully pretty soon I'll be out doing my own stuff and I can put everything I've learned into effect and make the shows of my own and the tours of my own just as good and even better! 

RoughEdge.com: Right on, and that leads into my next question. You've just released your self-released instrumental debut "Shove the Sun Aside," and the first thing I'll mention is this really isn't your typical guitar instrumental album. It's very disciplined as far as minimalism versus being overly flashy, you know?

Dave Weiner: Right, right.

RoughEdge.com: To me, you find a groove and you write just enough notes to carry that groove instead of showing off an arsenal of chops, so tell me your thoughts on this.

Dave Weiner: I love the guitar and I love guitar music, but unfortunately to me a lot of guitar music becomes a little bit boring and monotonous. When it sounds like a guy is just pushing play on a sequencer and playing this chop and this chop and this chop over a progression, he's not really caring about what's appropriate or what's going to compliment the song! On top of that, a lot of that stuff is not attractive; it's not desirable to anybody who's not a musician. When you're not a musician, a lot of times they can't appreciate what's going on. I wanted to do an instrumental record but I wanted to make it listenable to both musicians and non-musicians, you know what I mean?

RoughEdge.com: Right.

Dave Weiner: I wanted to write songs that were good just by themselves without any lead parts. The lead parts are what I did last because I wanted to make sure the songs were solid and could hold their own without any of the guitar technique side of things, so that both musicians and non-musicians would enjoy it. Then when they were done, I threw the leads on and I think I put enough technique into it but I still keep in mind as to what's going to be appropriate for the song and what's going to compliment the song. If I'm playing a slow song and I'm just blowing 64 note sweeps over the whole thing, it's going to sound like crap, you know what I mean? (laughs)

RoughEdge.com: (laughs)

Dave Weiner: It's so completely out of context that it just doesn't make sense and it's just like a wankfest, you know what I mean?

RoughEdge.com: (laughs)

Dave Weiner: I wanted to avoid that like the plague! I really made it a point to just make good songs that were, instead of a voice, were led by a guitar. 

RoughEdge.com: Now, in title, "Shove the Sun Aside" talks about having the conviction to attain goals at whatever cost and to remove the external factors that may be blocking your creative goals or to set your course accordingly, am I correct?

Dave Weiner: Yeah, exactly. To me, it just means … a lot of people put emphasis on 'I've to get signed, I've got to get a label to make my dreams happen.' Right now, in 2004, 2005, even when I started recording this way back in 2001, it's still not completely true now. Labels are completely unnecessary for the most part. They're necessary for publicity and distribution and that in itself is becoming less of a factor because of the internet, because of technology that is available. I've got a computer, I've got Pro Tools, I've got a good front end. I've spent a lot of time learning how to use it, but I did the whole thing myself and for a whole year put out a product by myself and it sold very well! Now it's been released by Favored Nations and the reason I did that was solely for distribution and publicity just to help that along so that my future records … I'll always put future records out myself at first, and if a label wants to pick it up under my terms, then I'll go with it. 

RoughEdge.com: Right on.

Dave Weiner: You don't need to wait for labels or the entertainment industry or anybody to come to you to make it happen. You just make it happen yourself and that's a very feasible concept right now because of all the technology that's available. It's relatively cheap, it's pretty easy to do.

RoughEdge.com: Essentially doing this DIY operation, the technology makes it so much easier to reach the masses than selling tapes out of the trunk of your car (laughs) which is how it was done ages before!

Dave Weiner: Exactly! You get a website, you get hooked up with PayPal and you're set, you know? You're set! (laughs) It's easy! Of course, people like to walk into a store and have the impulse buying kind of thing, whatever, but I still think it's a great idea and the online thing is just an amazing advancement. 

RoughEdge.com: Without a doubt. For instance, keeping in this theme, you've kind of put your own recording studio inside your living room! You get out of bed in the morning and bang, you're inside your studio!

Dave Weiner: Exactly. That's the way it was. I have since moved into a bigger place.

RoughEdge.com: Oh, okay.

Dave Weiner: But the concept is still the same. I want to record on my time, you know I mean? I don't want to sit inside the studio worrying about the clock running and I'm paying engineers and producers, blah blah blah … It's so unnecessary! All you need is to learn how to do it, learn how to produce. You just have to have your musician's ear and your producer's ear and you've got to step away from the egoism of 'I need to play all of these notes …' Once you get that formula set, you can pretty much take care of everything yourself. 

RoughEdge.com: Right. Now let's talk about a couple of the songs. "Long Run" is probably my favorite track. I think it allows you, Virgil Donati and Phillip Bynoe to really take flight as a unit and there's this stratospheric adventuresome spirit to the writing, so tell me a little about what went into that song.

Dave Weiner: Let's see … I wrote the thing so long ago I'm trying to remember … "Long Run" was actually derived from one of the songs that was on the demo that I recorded back at GIT that I gave to Steve in the first place. From the original version to the version that's on the CD, it's very different, but there are certain parts that are still the same. So it was derived a long time ago, I mean, it was probably 1998, and it started out with the main riff that you hear in the beginning of that song. From there, it kind of just wrote itself as far as going into the other parts. I wanted to keep that song specifically dynamic in its movements. I think it goes from a different part to a different part to a slower section to a weird fusion section before it goes into a drum solo, you know what I mean?

RoughEdge.com: Exactly.

Dave Weiner: So I can't remember the last time I've listened when there's a drum solo in the first song! I wanted to keep people on their toes pretty much for that song, wondering what was going to be coming next and kind of set the tone for the rest of the album in the aspect of these songs being not necessarily what you think they are! 

RoughEdge.com: Yeah. What's clever is that "Andonova" uses the drum machine at the end, which kind of leads into the live drum on "Long Run." 

Dave Weiner: Oh yeah! I love using sequence drums when they're in taste, and sequence drums to me, I want them to sound fake, you know what I mean?

RoughEdge.com: (laughs)

Dave Weiner: I haven't heard sampled drums that sound real enough for me to use in place of real drums yet, so I go the opposite direction and if I'm using fake drums, I want them to sound pretty damn fake, and that contrast between the fake drums and then going into the real drums is pretty black and white and that's the way I want it to be. I want it to be a really good contrast. 

RoughEdge.com: Cool, man. Now, I understand there's a really good story behind "The Ghost of Denmark Street," from when you lived in London?

Dave Weiner: (laughs) Yeah! There's a street called Denmark Street in London filled with guitar shops and when I was going to school there almost every single day after class I would go there just to sit down and play some stuff and get away from school for a little while. I became friends with one of the guys in one of the stores. I'd go in and I was just dabbling on this one riff, this droning, bending riff that's in "The Ghost of Denmark Street," and I would play it almost every time I'd sit down and pick up a different guitar, whatever. I wasn't in there one day and I went back and my friend asked me if I was in there the day before and I said no, and he said "I could've sworn I heard you playing the same riff you always play!" I said "Well, it must've been a ghost!" 

RoughEdge.com: (laughs)

Dave Weiner: So it just stuck with me and I kind of went with it. 

RoughEdge.com: Right on, man. Now, there's obviously so many people with sheer talent who give up, thinking the connections aren't there, the public interest isn't there, or if it is, they're not good enough to roll with the big dogs. As a writer, I've felt that more times than I can count, but my eye is always on the prize, which is internal happiness through my work. Are these emotions that you've gone through yourself and if so, how do you cope with them to stay focused on your own proverbial prize?

Dave Weiner: I definitely have felt all the emotions that you listed, especially when I was making my record because this was the first time I was doing anything like this. I wasn't getting paid at all, so it's kind of hard when you sit down and you work on something every single day, all day, and you don't get any paycheck at the end of the week. It's like, 'Why am I doing this again? Is it going to go anywhere? Are people going to like this? Am I going to like this? How's it going to sound when it comes out?' That was actually a really hard time because of those kinds of feelings, but I just had to say 'Just do it!' You've got to see what happens, you've got to at least try and see what happens when it's finished. So that's one side of it. That's my personal side of it with my own music. There's always the fact that first and foremost I have to say to myself 'Am I going to like this?' You know what I mean?

RoughEdge.com: Absolutely.

Dave Weiner: Because the music I write is for me. If people like it, that's awesome, and I'm glad a lot of people do like it, but I have to love it before I put it out. I have to live with it; it's a recorded media, it's never going to go away, so it's a snapshot of my life and playing at that time. I have to enjoy it before I put it out. 

RoughEdge.com: No doubt.

Dave Weiner: So that's one part of it. Another part of it is the live playing and the playing with musicians like Steve and these kinds of guys. Music and any instrument to me is never a competition and I'll never think of it as a competition, so I'll never think of it as 'Oh, I'll never be as good as Steve or Tony MacAlpine. Those guys play their way and why don't I play that way?' That's silly to think like that, because I don't want to play that way! They have their style and that's awesome. I don't want to play that way; the world doesn't need another Steve Vai! It doesn't need another Tony MacAlpine! There's already one and that's awesome! 

RoughEdge.com: Cool.

Dave Weiner: So those feelings I never really care about. I know I can hold my own. I've been in Steve's band for six years.

RoughEdge.com: You're doing something right!

Dave Weiner: Yeah! (laughs) I'm doing something right! I am just happy with my playing and I'm always trying to evolve it. To me, your music and your playing has to evolve because life evolves and my music is pretty much a reflection of my life at the time and if it's not evolving, then there's something wrong with my life! You know what I mean?

RoughEdge.com: Yeah.

Dave Weiner: So I keep trying to experience new things and take more opportunities that'll change my life as they come up and as a result, that'll change my writing and the end result will be my next album, and the album after that and the one after that. You know, I often get asked 'You need to play faster, so how can you do that?' Why do you have to play faster? They'll say 'Well, John Petrucci plays fast and he's clean.' Okay, yeah, but do you want to be just like that or … you know? It's good to have the facility to have that skill in your trick bag in case you want to use it, of course, but I often tell people you shouldn't emulate your playing off of what you see somebody else doing because you've got try and be as original as possible. 

RoughEdge.com: No doubt! There's already 6,000 shredders out there!

Dave Weiner: Of course, of course! There's a million players who are more technically proficient than me, but it just shows you that that's not what it's about. 

RoughEdge.com: It's about doing your own thing.

Dave Weiner: Yep.

RoughEdge.com: What was your first guitar and do you still have it?

Dave Weiner: I do still have it! It was an Ibanez Roadstar 2. You know, a Strat copy, three single coils, 21 frets, rosewood neck and I still have it, you know, I never got rid of it because it always played and sounded amazing! To this day it still plays and sounds amazing! 

RoughEdge.com: Beautiful, man! Now, to summarize our conversation, you give the credo of achieving the impossible. Is there anything impossible to you at this point that you've got your targets set on?

Dave Weiner: That's a very interesting question. That's a very good question. Along the lines of my instrumental career, I don't think so. To me, the impossible was putting out one record and actually liking it, and if it sold one copy, that was satisfaction enough, but it's gone so much farther than I could ever imagine that I'm completely ecstatic with what has happened. If the next one does the same thing or it sells one copy, I'm going to be completely fine with it. What I may deem impossible is what I'd also like to do, which is putting a band together with a lead singer. In going that route as well as the instrumental route … I'll always put out instrument records, I can do that by myself … I've collected a good fanbase from touring with Steve, people know my name and they know where to get it and they seem to like the record, so I think I'll always do instrumental records, but I would like to try the band route with a vocalist for awhile. It's just finding that singer, which to me, is almost impossible. 

RoughEdge.com: Right.

Dave Weiner: I think a lot of people are having the same problems, finding a good singer, because when you're in that situation, the voice of the band is the singer. 

RoughEdge.com: Right, right.

Dave Weiner: The whole sound of the band basically leads down to the singer. So I'm always on the lookout and still trying to find a good singer to work with and just try that route, see what happens with that as well as the instrumental stuff. So I don't think anything is impossible, but if I would say one thing is very difficult, it's finding the right singer for a band.

RoughEdge.com: What you have to ride out is all of this hardcore throat scorching and these retro Rob Halford wannabes. (laughs)

Dave Weiner: Exactly, exactly.

RoughEdge.com: Yep. Dave, thank you very much for your time! It's been real!

Dave Weiner: Thank you very much, brother! Take care!


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