During a recent conversation with Spin magazine, Black Sabbath’s iconic guitarist Tony Iommi talked about his relationship with the late guitar legend and cancer warrior Eddie Van Halen and revealed that although they played a lot together, he was never able to do Eddie’s guitar tricks.
As you may recall, on October 6, 2020, the whole rock world mourned the passing of Van Halen’s co-founder and legendary guitarist Eddie. He was well-known for his amazing guitar skills, energetic stage performances, and great kindness towards his friends, fellow musicians, and fans.
Just some weeks ago, Tony Iommi had talked about his close relationship with Eddie Van Halen to Eddie Trunk and had said that it started in 1978 at the ‘Never Say Die’ tour and lasted until his passing. He had also disclosed that Eddie was very supportive during Iommi’s illness and that he too tried to do his best when Eddie was battling cancer.
In his recent interview, after talking about his close friendship with Eddie and how much they enjoyed jamming together, Iommi was asked about whether he ever managed to do Eddie’s crazy tricks on the guitar. To this, Iommi responded by saying that Eddie was incredibly good and that that he genuinely ‘couldn’t actually do it.’
He started laughing and said that it wasn’t really his style anyway but that what he did was definitely brilliant. He praised the late rockstar for his immense talent didn’t shy away from saying that he couldn’t do Eddie’s crazy ‘hammer-ons’ even though he tried.
Here’s what the interviewer asked:
“Did you ever try the hammer-ons and all the crazy things Eddie was doing on the guitar?”
To which Tony Iommi responded:
“No. In a word! [Laughs]. I mean, he was so good. And he got absolutely amazing at that stuff. Oh, man, I couldn’t do it. I had tried. But again, when somebody’s done it, to me, I don’t want to be going around doing it; ‘oh Eddie Van Halen already does it.’
But I couldn’t actually do it. To be honest, it just wasn’t my style of playing. What he did was just brilliant.”
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