On his upcoming album, God Told Me To, guitarist John 5 covers Michael Jackson’s Beat It – and does a spot-on rendition of Eddie Van Halen’s famous solo. “It’s one of the most incredible leads ever,” he admits. “For me to play it any other way would have been wrong somehow. A solo like that, you have to do it perfectly.” (Want to hear how he does? Check it out below.)
As it turns out, John 5 has ties to Van Halen – he wrote and recorded with David Lee Roth in the late ’90s – and on the subject of the band’s new album, A Different Kind Of Truth, he’s quick to sing its praises. “It’s amazing!” he enthuses.
“I love the new Van Halen record,” the guitarist says. “Let me rephrase that: I love, love, love the new Van Halen record. It’s heavy. If you really sit down and listen to it, it’s totally heavy. The band isn’t playing it safe at all, and that’s what’s so great about it.”
When the album’s first song, Tattoo, was released, many folks were less than impressed. John 5, however, quickly chalked it up as a winner. “It’s a wonderful song,” he chips. “I remember everybody going, ‘Ahhh, I don’t know about this Tattoo.’ But I’ll tell you, by the second or third time I heard it, it was in my head. And that’s the mark of any great song – it stays with you.”
John 5’s God Told Me To will be released on 8 May. MusicRadar will have more with him soon.