To clarify the title:
I grew up admiring many well known players like Yngwie, Zakk Wylde, Paul Gilbert, Alexi Laiho etc.
As I got a better guitarist myself, I started to notice the finer nuances of their playstyle. And what struck me the most at some point with almost all of them is the fact that they got sloppy in their live performances, played “weird” stuff in their solos, seemed to hit not even 50% of the notes they should actually play and so on.
I mean, why is this? Didn’t they care about proper practice anymore at some point? Or years of drug (which includes alcohol for me) abuse?
I can not imagine that their age is the problem, because first I don’t think that your hands are all of a sudden not capable of doing these movements if you are 50 years or older, and second, Paul Gilbert is an excellent counterexample (although he decreased the shredding part a little bit, but he still seems to be capable of doing so).
In the case of Alexi Laiho, which is or was my biggest influence at some point, I believe it is the fault of many years of drug abuse and of course several broken arms. It is always kind of painful for me to see this guy play live because I admired him so much years ago.
Let me know what you think!