Black Sabbath mastermind Tony Iommi recently shared his thoughts about Eddie Van Halen’s guitar skills.
MetalHeadZone.com reports on what Iommi said at Whitley Bay Film Festival. The Van Halen segment is below:
“I couldn’t do what he does. He’s very technical, he does all the tapping. But one time he came over and we got to play together. He wanted to play…
He said, ‘We used to play ‘Into the Void.” And we started playing ‘Into the Void.’ And I said ‘No, you’re playing it wrong.’ [Laughs]
And he said, ‘I’ve been playing it like this all these years. And, of course, I showed him how to play it. I didn’t ask him how he played any of his because I wouldn’t be able to do it. [Laughs]”
You know, these relationships we struck up from those tours lasted all these years. He’s one of my best friends. And Brian May, of course. So it was great touring together.
And basically they were new on the block, and they learned a lot from us. On the side of the stage every night, watching what to get the crowd going, drum solos and all that.
Towards the end of the tour, they were basically doing exactly the same as us. They were doing the guitar solos, then the drum solos. And one night I said to Eddie, ‘Hey Eddie, are you gonna play a couple of tracks off our new album tomorrow?’ [Laughs]
And I took him in my room and I said, ‘You can’t be doing the same sort of thing on the same show. When you do your own shows, do it.’ And we’ve been friends ever since then.”
It’s great to see a guitar god like Tony Iommi give props to Eddie Van Halen (which wasn’t the first time he did). But we’d like to point out that what Iommi must be remembering it wrong about Van Halen getting the idea to have guitar and drum solos in their live show from Black Sabbath.
Van Halen’s drum, bass, and guitar solos were live staples ever since their club days, from 1974-1977. And those solos carried over to every concert Van Halen ever performed, including the very first show of their first world tour, at the Aragon Ballroom in Chicago, IL, when they opened for Journey. It wasn’t until over two months later that they got the dream gig of opening for their idols, Black Sabbath.
You can watch the entire interview from below.