Al Pitrelli
Born: September 26, 1962, New York City
Genres: Hard Rock, Heavy Metal, Thrash Metal, Progressive Rock, Symphonic Metal
Occupation(s):  Musician, Songwriter
Instruments:  Guitar

Years Active: 1982 – Present
Associated Acts: Danger Danger, Hotshot, Alice Cooper, Asia , Joe Lynn Turner,

Place Called Rage, Savatage, Trans-Siberian, Orchestra, Megadeth, 0’2L, Widowmaker (U.S.), Sebastian Bach, Michael Bolton, T.M.Sevens, Vertex, Blue Oyster Cult, Expose

  Savatage - Wacken Open Air 2015-0982.jpg
Pitrelli Graduating Hicksville High 1980 & Performing in 2015

Early career (1982–1995)

Pitrelli attended the Berklee College of Music in Boston in the early 1980s (where keyboardist Derek Sherinian was his dorm roommate; they would later work together in the Alice Cooper band). While at Berklee, Al formed an original 1980s metal band with classmates that included Venom guitarist Mike Hickey. After dropping out of Berklee, Pitrelli worked as a session musician during his early days, and also taught guitar lessons in Manhattan. His first major label gig was performing with Michael Bolton, helping him support his single "Fool's Game". Pitrelli said of the single, "This was when Michael Bolton was still trying to be Sammy Hagar and not Engelbert Humperdinck."

In the late 1980's/early 1990's, Pitrelli joined forces with bassist Randy Coven and drummer John Reilly to release two Shrapnel Records-type albums titled "Sammy Says Ouch" and "CPR". [2] Pitrelli was Alice Cooper's guitarist and musical director from 1989 until 1991 on the Trashes The World tour. He then joined Dee Snider's band Widowmaker for two albums in the early/mid–1990s, and also briefly played with Stephen Pearcy (from the band Ratt) in a band called Vertex. Pitrelli also joined Asia, appearing on their albums Aqua (1992) and Aria (1994). He would go on to be featured on many New York sessions, including for Kathy Troccoli, Taylor Dayne, Randy Coven and Exposé. His songs have been covered by Y&T, Lita Ford and Derek Sherinian. For a month he substituted in Blue Öyster Cult. Widowmaker (w/ Dee Snider) albums "Blood & Bullets" (1994) & "Standby For Pain" (1995)

Savatage (1995–2000)

Al joined Savatage in 1995, joining at the same time as Chris Caffery returned to the band; Caffery had previously been part of the band around the release of Gutter Ballet in 1989. Pitrelli played guitar on the albums Dead Winter Dead (1995) and The Wake of Magellan (1997), and performed some lead guitar work on Poets and Madmen (2001), despite being a member of Megadeth at the time. On that album, Pitrelli was responsible for the outro of "Stay with Me a While", the main solos of "Morphine Child" and "The Rumor", the first part of the main solo in "Commissar" and its outro.[3] During his time with Savatage, he was asked by their producer Paul O'Neill if he was interested in joining his side project, the Trans-Siberian Orchestra. Pitrelli agreed and has played a role in all of their albums to date.

Trans Siberian Orchestra (1995–present)

Pitrelli has been a core member of the group since their first album. As well as being the main lead guitarist, he is also the live musical director. TSO's 2007 tour program credits his "edgy playing and vast musical lexicon" with making him a perfect fit for the band's constant boundary-pushing progressive rock stylings. Pitrelli's leads are notable on "Tracers" and the instrumental "Toccatta – Carpimus Nocten",[4] the latter being a piece he co-wrote. Both songs form part of the group's fifth rock opera, on their 2009 album Night Castle.[5]

Megadeth (2000–02)

Pitrelli was a member of Megadeth from 2000–02, replacing Marty Friedman. Megadeth bandleader Dave Mustaine asked him to join after hearing good reviews from their then-current drummer Jimmy DeGrasso, with whom Pitrelli played during his days with Alice Cooper in the early 1990s. Pitrelli joined the band after an impromptu "audition" in front of a live crowd in Vancouver on January 16, 2000. Two nights after Friedman played his last show with Megadeth, Pitrelli was asked to play fifteen minutes before the show and was shocked by the prospect as they never rehearsed. He was present during the recording of Rude Awakening, a live CD/DVD that was released in 2002, and also performed on their 2001 album The World Needs a Hero, which has 2 songs co-written by Pitrelli. When Megadeth entered hiatus after Mustaine injured his arm, Pitrelli rejoined Savatage on April 9, 2002, but did not tour with the band. He also continued his work with TSO, which he's still a member of today.

Recent work (2002–present)

In 1998, Pitrelli was featured on the video game album Sonic Adventure Remix, where he played guitar on a remix of the game's theme song "Open Your Heart".

Personal life

1st wife Donna Pitrelli (Jesse and Jamie) and 2nd wife Jane Mangini. Pitrelli is married to his 3rd wife Nicole Pitrelli. He is the father of five children: Jesse, Jamie, Zak, Olivia and Layla.