Steve Vai pays tribute to Alexi Laiho as he recalls sharing a Guitar World cover with the late metal hero

Steve Vai pays tribute to Alexi Laiho
(Image credit: Olly Curtis/Future / Franceso Castaldo/Pacific Press/LightRocket via Getty Images)

Tributes have been pouring in for Children of Bodom electric guitar player Alexi Laiho, who passed away at his home in Helsinki, Finland at the age of 41 after suffering "long term health issues" in his final years.

Now, guitar great Steve Vai has added his voice to the mix, writing on Facebook:

“So sorry to hear of the passing of Alexi Laiho of Children of Bodom. With his band he was part of a powerful movement that ushered in hi octane, intense Metal at its most brutal and beautiful.”

Vai also recalled a Guitar World cover that the two shared with Zakk Wylde back in 2005, writing, “I had the good fortune of meeting him several times and being a part of this Guitar World story with him.

“He was always respectful, personable, quiet and unassuming, but then you'd hear him play and you realize that embodied in that delicate frame was a fiercely confident and monstrous guitar commander of the highest order. 

"Rock on young brother.”

Vai joins the likes of Nita Strauss in paying tribute to Laiho. The Alice Cooper guitarist dubbed Laiho one of her "biggest inspirations when I got serious about playing guitar".

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Richard Bienstock

Rich is the co-author of the best-selling Nöthin' But a Good Time: The Uncensored History of the '80s Hard Rock Explosion. He is also a recording and performing musician, and a former editor of Guitar World magazine and executive editor of Guitar Aficionado magazine. He has authored several additional books, among them Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck, the companion to the documentary of the same name.