“I heard the guitar the way you hear it today. I knew where guitar was going twenty years before it got there.” This quote comes from Gary James of ClassicBnds.com when he interviewed Harvey Mandel.
“I just knew in my head that guitar players were trying back then to play more like horns or like a piano or a violin that was more fluid. So, I always had that style in the back of my mind. I knew the Heavy Metal thing was just in the infancy stages back then. That wasn’t my bag, but I knew there was going to be a whole style of guitar that was built on what I called gymnastic guitar which is a lot of these weird positions and scales these guys learned. Young kids today are playing a million notes a second, but to me it don’t mean anything ’cause they’re not licks. They’re not melodies. They’re not sounds. The guys that I respect are of the super class like Eric Johnson, Steve Vai, (Joe) Satriani. Those are guys that can play a million notes, but they play magic melodies. They play licks. That’s where I’m coming from. I’m not worried about showing how fast I can play. I’m trying to show how melodic and how magic I can come up with the style of my own, which fortunately you can’t really plan on it, but I do it. I have a complete Harvey Mandel style, thank God. That’s what I do. It came naturally. I just had to work on my playing and learning guitar, theory, technique and all that stuff. It’s all come to a great point in my playing right now where my stuff has really come together.”
Unfortunately, Harvey hasn’t been out to play, he’s fighting for his life again, the cancer has come back. And he’s racking up huge medical debt and needs our help to raise money to pay for a series of surgeries. We’ve set up a Help Harvey Beat Cancer GoFundMe page and invite you to come, check on his condition, and of course, contribute whatever you can. It’ll mean the world to Harvey.