Watch the Rock Hall of Fame’s all-star tribute to Eddie Van Halen

Publish Date
Tuesday, 10 November 2020, 3:44PM

In paying tribute to late-guitar icon Eddie Van Halen, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame enlisted three Van Halen disciples to try and put into words just how much Eddie changed the world.

The segment included clips of Slash, Metallica’s Kirk Hammett and Rage Against the Machine’s Tom Morello speaking of Eddie’s impact.

“Eddie Van Halen was a truly gifted musician,” said Slash. ‘His style and 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.”

Hammett added: “Eddie Van Halen was amazing. Not since Jimi Hendrix had there been a guitar player that had so much impact and was so inspiring to me. He just explored that 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.”

Morello then called Eddie the “Mozart of our generation. He had the kind of talent that maybe comes around once in 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 Van Halen died on October 6 at age 65 after a long battle with throat cancer.

The Rock Hall’s “In Memoriam” segment also included tributes to Ginger Baker, Charlie Daniels, Dr. John, Ric Ocasek, Neil Peart, John Prine, Little Richard, Kenny Rogers and Bill Withers.

The 2020 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony aired Saturday night, but the program is also available on HBO and HBO Max.

This year's inductees were Depeche Mode, Doobie Brothers, Whitney Houston, Nine Inch Nails, The Notorious B.I.G. and T-Rex.

This article was first published on and is republished here with permission