Steve Vai, Zakk Wylde and John 5 Join Benefit for Tony MacAlpine

by Guitar World Staff
Posted Nov 6, 2015 at 1:59pm

Steve Vai, Zakk Wylde and John 5, along with Mike Portnoy, Billy Sheehan and Derek Sherinian are joining forces to play a benefit concert for guitar and keyboard virtuoso Tony MacAlpine, who was recently diagnosed with colon cancer.

The Benefit for Tony MacAlpine will take place at the Wiltern Theater in Los Angeles 7 p.m. December 12. It will feature performances by John 5 and the Creatures; Zakk Wylde with Mike Portnoy, Billy Sheehan and Derek Sherinian; Steve Vai and his band, plus an all-star jam with house band Portnoy, Sheehan and Sherinian plus special guests. Eddie Trunk will serve as master of ceremonies.

In addition to this extraordinary musical event, Steve Vai, John 5, Paul Gilbert, Joe Bonamassa, Steve Lukather, Steve Stevens and Joe Satriani have donated their personal guitars to be auctioned during the event. Rudy Sarzo has offered private bass lessons as an auction item, and Simon Phillips has donated a signature snare drum. Tony’s gear manufacturers—Ibanez, Hughes & Kettner, EMG, Ernie Ball, Source Audio and Voodoo Lab—also have donated equipment to be raffled.

Tony’s cancer diagnosis comes on the heels of his wife’s diagnosis with breast cancer in June, making the situation even more trying for Tony and his family.

“Tony is a dear friend, an absolutely sweet human being and one of the most talented musicians I've ever worked with,” Portnoy says. “We are coming together to help raise money and awareness to help him fight his battle and come out on top!” Adds Vai: “It's a great privilege to take to the stage with my friends Zakk, John, Mike and Billy in support of our dear friend Tony. Tony has always been blessed with an exceptional talent and more so, he's an exceptionally cool guy. It's a great cause and will be a magical evening of guitar extravaganza.”

“Tony has been such an inspiration to me,” John 5 adds. “He's an incredible musician and an unbelievable talent. Please let's all come together and beat this.”

"Tony is our brother. We look forward to making a historical night, and raising a lot of money to help our friend in need,” Sherinian says.

MacAlpine is widely known as a guitar virtuoso who is just as skilled on the keys. Edge of Insanity, his classic debut album, was recently ranked by Guitar World as one of the Top 10 Shred Guitar Albums of all time. Aside from his solo work, Tony has been part of several rock supergroups including Planet X with Sherinian and Virgil Donati; PSMS (Portnoy/Sheehan/MacAlpine/Sherinian); as well as the Grammy-nominated CAB with bassist Bunny Brunel and drummer Dennis Chambers. MacAlpine also spent seven years playing guitar and keys in Vai‘s touring band, the Breed.

Tickets are on sale 10 a.m. PT November 7 through LiveNation.com, with all proceeds going to help Tony and his family. A GoFundMe campaign will be set up for fans who can’t make the show, but still want to contribute.

Doors will be at 7 p.m. with the show set to begin at 8 p.m. For tickets, visit LiveNation.com.


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