(hennemusic) The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame paid tribute to Eddie Van Halen during its 2020 induction ceremony on November 7. Slash, Kirk Hammett of Metallica and Tom Morello reflected on the legacy of the late rocker during a pre-taped event special that was broadcast on HBO and HBO Max and featured video of the guitarist in action.
"Eddie Van Halen was a truly gifted musician," said Slash. "His style and his sound were completely unique to him. He had a massive impact on guitar playing and I don't think there's anybody who has picked up a guitar since 1978 who hasn't been touched in some way by Eddie Van Halen's influence. I really miss his playing and I really miss him as a friend."
"Eddie Van Halen was amazing," added Hemmett. "Not since Jimi Hendrix had there been a guitar player that had so much impact and was so inspiring to me. He just explored the most simplest thing - a harmonic on a string - and brought it into a realm of technique that nobody even thought was possible. He was just like from a different planet."
"Eddie Van Halen was the Mozart of our generation," shared Morello. "He had the kind of talent that maybe comes around once a century. Eddie Van Halen inspired me to practice 20,000 hours to try to get within a hundred miles of his inspired mastery of the electric guitar."
Eddie passed away in a Santa Monica, CA hospital on October 6 at the age of 65 after a lengthy battle with cancer.
The Van Halen tribute was featured as part of the Rock Hall special's "In Memoriam" review, which also honored other rock and roll legends who have died over the past year and a half; that list includes Little Richard, Rush drummer Neil Peart, Ric Ocasek of The Cars, Cream drummer Ginger Baker and several others. Read more here.
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