Joe "Satch" Satriani is an instrumental rock guitarist. His success is notable in a genre typically unfriendly to instrumental musicians. Satriani has received 13 Grammy nominations, and he has sold more than 7 million albums worldwide. It is notable that while his non-musician fans tend to call him "Satch", other guitarists more typically call him "Saint Joe"; there are numerous t-shirts to this effect. Satriani is recognized as one of the most technically proficient guitarists in rock. He has mastered nearly every performance technique on his instrument, including two-handed tapping, sweep picking, volume swells, tap harmonics, etc.
He is also a renowned guitar teacher, whose students have included Steve Vai, David Bryson (Counting Crows), Kirk Hammett (Metallica), Larry LaLonde (Primus), and Charlie Hunter, among others. Joe Satriani was born on July 15, 1956, in Carle Place, New York. He was inspired to play guitar at age 14, after hearing Jimi Hendrix. During the 1970s, Satriani moved to Berkeley, California to pursue a music career.
When his friend and former student Steve Vai gained fame playing with David Lee Roth in 1986, Vai raved about Satriani in several interviews with guitar magazines. Word spread quickly, and Satriani was soon counted among rock's most talented guitarists.
In 1989, Satriani's song "One Big Rush" (originally released on Flying in a Blue Dream) was featured on the soundtrack to Say Anything. In 1994, Satriani joined the band Deep Purple to replace guitarist Ritchie Blackmore during the band's tour. In 1996, Satriani formed G3, a concert tour featuring three instrumental rock guitarists -- originally Satriani, Steve Vai, and Eric Johnson.
Satriani has often been criticized for the "sterility" of his music. The virtually flawless precision of his techniques as a guitarist have sometimes been described as "robotic" -- however this must be considered alongside the fact that few others in the world can match his technique, and that he has delved into many of the simpler styles with considerable success, such as blues and rock and roll. In relation to contemporary virtuoso guitarists however, such as Yngwie Malmsteen and John Petrucci, Satriani is often praised as a more lyrical, soulful guitarist. Satriani has maintained a large fan base throughout the world during his career. Satriani has endorsed Ibanezs JS Series guitars, and Peaveys JSX amplifier. Both lines were designed specifically as signature products for Satriani.