Steve Vai and Orianthi shred in Highly Strung video

New shred goddess Orianthi in a head-cutting duel with the the devil's guitarist, Jack Butler? What's this, a scene from Crossroads II? Actually, it's Orianthi ripping it up gleefully with her idol Steve Vai in the video to the song Highly Strung.

Vai played on the track, featured on Orianthi's new album, Believe, and for the Australian-born Orianthi, who came to international fame last year when she was picked to be Michael Jackson's guitarist for what would have been his London concert residency, the chance to play with one of her six, er, seven-string heroes still has her pinching herself.

"I've known [Vai] since I was 15," she tells Spinner. "My first support was opening for him at this club in Adelaide, Australia and I was so nervous because it was my first support, let alone opening for one of the best guitar players in the world.

"I just respect him immensely and look up to him and you never stop learning off guitar players like Steve Vai and Santana - they're my two favorite guitar players."

As evidenced in the 'making of' clip below, Orianthi and Vai have certainly established a mutual admiration society. Rather than the usual growly 'rock faces' we've come to know, the two can't seem to stop smiling and goofing around.

"Getting to do a song with Steve for the record was just awesome and making a video with him was really cool," she says. "It has a real sort of '80s feel to it and was really simple, but it really focuses on my playing."

Joe Bosso

Joe is a freelance journalist who has, over the past few decades, interviewed hundreds of guitarists for Guitar WorldGuitar PlayerMusicRadar and Classic Rock. He is also a former editor of Guitar World, contributing writer for Guitar Aficionado and VP of A&R for Island Records. He’s an enthusiastic guitarist, but he’s nowhere near the likes of the people he interviews. Surprisingly, his skills are more suited to the drums. If you need a drummer for your Beatles tribute band, look him up.