More proof that the young generation isn’t hopeless! The Van Halen News Desk was recently tipped off to this young guitarist who’s done a lot of Van Halen covers on YouTube. Wow, is this kid good, and it sure looks like he’s having fun! Jacob Deraps is a 17-year-old Canadian who is, shall we say, very glad he discovered Van Halen. After we were blown away by his videos, we just had to talk to him. When we called, we happened to catch him playing guitar, naturally. But he took time out to talk to us…
“I really like all the great ’80s rock music, and years ago I started out playing the video game Guitar Hero. One day, when I was 12 years old, I decided to start playing the real guitar. I was instantly hooked by this instrument and I quickly improved.
“My favorite guitar player is easily Eddie Van Halen. I’ve always been blown away by that huge, wild and dirty guitar sound that Eddie produces from his hands, and also his feeling on the guitar. His sound is just incredible and has totally amazed me since the first time I heard him—it’s the best guitar sound ever!”
“I think my best Van Halen covers are “Mean Street”, “I’m the One”, “Hot For Teacher,” “Feel Your Love Tonight” and “Spanish Fly.”
To me, “Eruption” is the best guitar solo ever made, and it will remain so forever.”
Note: In the videos below, Jacob is playing along with the backing tracks that were extracted from the Guitar Hero, Van Halen video game. He’s playing along with just the vocals, bass and drums only. ALL the guitar you hear is Jacob’s.
We hope you dig watching Jacob jam these Van Halen tunes as much as we do! It’s great to see young kids who really “get” Van Halen. We wish him all the best with his playing!