It's easy to assume that at this point, Satriani has everything down pat – he's been at it for decades, and has inspired countless players with his virtuosity. As he recently shared, though, the same physical wear and tear that affects us mere mortals affects him as well.
Soon after a recent performance, Satch took to Instagram to share a photo of the fingers on his fretting hand and... oof... We can feel those bends.
We advise you to perhaps look away if you're on the squeamish side...
"Getting worse," Satriani writes of the wear and tear on his fretting hand, "but making me look for new ways to play.
"Ever since I started playing guitar I’ve had a problem maintaining fingertip calluses. Superglue is awesome when things get ugly but it doesn’t last very long. And, the show must go on! Are there other products that could help?"
The crowdsourced recommendations were, as you might expect, numerous and varied – coconut oil before bed, a collagen supplement and extra vitamin C and A, and, of course, changing the gauges of his electric guitar strings.
Satriani, for his part, has been open about struggling with pain in his fretting hand in the past, telling Guitarist in a 2022 interview that he had been struggling with tension in his left pinky, and that the title track to his 2015 album, Shockwave Supernova, was the culprit.
"When I was writing it [Shockwave Supernova]," Satriani said, "I figured out all the different places to play it and came up with one version that sounded unique – but my hand didn’t want to do it live. It started to really hurt.
"That tour, I had to rewrite so many fingerings. I’d sit down before a show and figure out, like, which notes had to be legato or could I pick three of them instead?"
As Satriani said, though, "the show must go on," and indeed, the guitarist has a number of live shows in Europe – plus a smattering of dates in America – scheduled for the rest of May, June, and early July.
For more info on – and tickets to – Satriani's forthcoming shows, visit the guitarist's website.