In a recent interview with Tales from the Road, Steve Vai explained how he felt when he got a lot of criticism because of his music when grunge was on the rise.

Steve Vai secured his spot in the music industry by collaborating with big names such as Whitesnake, Alcatrazz, and David Lee Roth. Vai once explained in his interviews that working with them was a great inspiration for him. After spending many years with notable names, he learned how to play, perform, and what he wanted to do about his music.

In one of the previous interviews, Vai noted that he achieved his childhood dream of becoming a rock star by working with important names. However, he indicated that he knew that he would make his music from the beginning. Then, Vai eventually showed his music with ‘Passion and Warfare.’

The guitarist explained during a recent conversation that the rise of grunge music distressed him after the time he was enjoying the praises towards his music and awards he received with the release of ‘Passion and Warfare.’ Vai said that the criticism he got when ‘Sex and Religion’ came out was a painful process. He added that it was an alteration for him to think about his rising ego and mentality.

Vai said in the interview the following:

“And grunge came along, and I released ‘Sex and Religion.’ I would bet anybody $1 that they cannot find more negative, vicious criticism written about a guitar player in a three-year period than about me because the fashionable thing at the time was to attack anybody that knew how to play an instrument. And I was that flashy guy, so I was a great object of attack, and boy was I attacked, especially with ‘Sex and Religion’ because it was a totally different kind of a record.

So how did I deal with that criticism? It was the best thing that ever happened to me because it was so hurtful to my ego, which was good because it was like being crucified. And after being crucified, there was a rebirth, the crucifixion, and the resurrection, as they say. I didn’t deal with it well. There was a lot of mental suffering on my part.”

You can watch the whole interview below.