Former Genesis lead guitarist Steve Hackett gave an interview to Rock History Music and revealed whether he was the one who created guitar tapping, the technique popularized by Eddie Van Halen.
As you probably know, Eddie Van Halen has still been considered as one of the most talented guitar players of all time by both music critics and fans. Along with his many techniques, his most famous was tapping the guitar by using his two hands on the guitar neck.
Eddie Van Halen first introduced and popularized this technique in his instrumental rock guitar solo ‘Eruption’ in 1978. Although many people discovered the tapping technique with Eddie as it was his signature playing style, it was in fact first used by Genesis guitarist Steve Hackett in 1971.
In the interview, Hackett answered a fan question about whether he feels like he does not get the credit he deserves for creating the tapping style back in 1972. He said that he used it in 1971 but he can’t be sure whether he was the person who created it or not. The guitarist then stated it could have been used by a guitarist many years ago so it will remain obscure and unknown for everyone.
The host delivered a fan’s question saying:
“What he thinks about the popularity of guitar tapping techniques, popularized by players like Eddie Van Halen, that he was literally the first player to create it back in 1972? Does he feel he doesn’t get the credit he deserves for creating that style of playing?”
“Well, I was using it in ’71, I was doing that and I think it’s a matter of public record now that I was doing that in 1971.
I have no idea if I was the first to do it, or if there may have been a guy in 1872 who was doing the same thing, for all we know.
We will never know that the origins of music and techniques are obscure in the extreme.”
You can watch the full interview below.