It occurred to me how weird it was that Joe Satriani has played live for a great many years always with sunglasses on. I would have thought that it would make it more difficult to play?
"The sunglasses thing happened as a joke. I surprised my band one tour by showing up with my head shaved. And they were so horrified that they said I had to wear a hat and glasses or they wouldn’t stop laughing on stage. Then I realized that having that curtain to hide behind allowed me to be more creative and feel less self-conscious. My buddy Sammy Hagar feels the same way. He says he can't go on stage without sunglasses because he's so embarrassed to be a singer. He's the last person you’d expect to think that way."
Slash is another wearer:
"I rarely look out at the crowd. It makes me very uncomfortable to look directly into the face of the crowd. I'm in my own little world, playing my guitar. I play from the heart - but it's very insular. I think it was just a hangover thing that turns into an everyday thing. Now, wherever you go, everybody's got camera phones, taking your picture, and you just end up never taking the shades off."
I don't play live myself, but I hate situations in life when I'm the centre of attention and people look at me (eg my wedding!), so I think if I ever played live I would have to get some sunglasses and get practicing with them!