Alice Cooper's Guitarist Nita Strauss: I Learned Everything From UG When I Was a Kid

Nita says she directs people to UG all the time when they're learning new songs.

Ultimate Guitar
Alice Cooper's Guitarist Nita Strauss: I Learned Everything From UG When I Was a Kid

Nita Strauss, the guitarist of Alice Cooper and The Iron Maidens, revealed that UG played a crucial role in the beginning of her musical journey.

She told UG interviewer Justin Beckner: "I learned everything from Ultimate Guitar when I was a kid.

"I was all into Metallica and Megadeth. I never really had the right hand for it. I still don't. But I would go on UG and I would post on the forums and stuff.

"It's funny now. I looked at my account recently and the last activity was like in 2006. But I could see all the old messages asking people what they thought about, for example, the new Tube Screamer versus the reissue. It's fun to go back and look at that stuff. It's a trip."

Focusing on advice she has for all the aspiring guitarists out there, Nita added: "I'm not just saying this because of who I'm talking to, Ultimate Guitar is a great resource and I direct people there all the time when they're learning new songs.

"The other piece of advice would be to just have fun with it, especially if you're getting into technical playing. Don't get so bogged down with all the technical stuff. It's supposed to be PLAYING guitar. So play. Have fun with it. Don't let it turn into work.

"That's advice that I have to take too. I have to practice guitar because it is my job. But just like in a relationship, even after you've been with someone for a long time, you still have to go on dates. That's how you keep your relationship alive. It's the same thing with your instrument. You have to do stuff that's fun for you or it will become work."

Fun fact in case you didn't know it: Nita is actually a descendant of Austrian composer Johann Strauss. She noted during the interview:

"I come from a musical family. My dad was a musician and he played in bands. My musical ancestry goes back to the composer Johann Strauss. So there was always music around and there were always instruments in the house.

"But it wasn't until I saw the movie 'Crossroads' and that scene at the end with Vai. That's what sparked my love of the instrument and my desire to play like that. It's still what inspires me to this day."

21 comments sorted by best / new / date

    UG really is a goldmine for aspiring guitarists. Her second piece of advice is spot-on too, it's basically the same thing Steve Krenz said in his lesson series. Also, Alice Cooper is one of the best songwriters ever Wish more people would tab his songs apart from the hits.
    When she was a kid? How fucking old is UG?
    She might not have perfect technique, but it's miles ahead of mine, and when it comes to lead playing she can play circles around me. And I'm not a bad guitarist by any means.
    Yep, and assuming youdie's even listened to her play at all, she's only played other people's songs on a large scale - first Iron Maiden, then Alice Cooper - both of them have great, timeless guitar songs of which she delivers pretty good renditions. You can only judge a guitarist by their original material.
    Maybe she's more of a guitar player and less of a song writer? She can play the hell out of the guitar.
    Not really. you need to be a great guitar player to play a classical piece on the guitar for example. and you can't just play it fast, you gotta have a great sense of vibrato, dynamics and feel to make it sound good. and you cannot do that if you're not a good guitar player, no matter if you've never created a song or has been writing since kindergarden.
    You're right. I was mostly thinking along the lines of three-to-four chord songs when I wrote that.
    What is "perfect technique"?
    I was originally responding to somebody saying that she was a horrible guitarist. In reality, I don't think there really is such a thing as "perfect" technique, but some people's could definitely be better.
    In a World where girls need to show their butts to impressed people. Nita destroyed them all!!
    I used to teach guitar in my city for a few years and any of my students that progressed to a certain level, I would refer them to UG too. Where is my article? lol
    Ok, i'm gonna be 'that' guy. She's hot! And i'm sure very capable with a guitar
    oh she is.
    The reason why I'm so impressed with her performance is that she makes her playing look easy and natural unlike many female guitarists. I don't know what it is, but always when UG posts those old youtube clips (as news) of this or that girl playing Dragonforce or Satriani or whatever, they always look like they don't even enjoy doing it.