Count Black Stone Cherry’s Chris Robertson among those who would never have even picked up a guitar if not for Eddie Van Halen.
“I never got to meet him or see [Van Halen] play live, but I can say without Eddie, I would never have become a lead guitar player,” BSC’s lead vocalist/guitarist told Robert Cavuoto of Myglobalmind, adding that Eddie “rewrote the guitar handbook” with his signature instrumental “Eruption”.
Robertson also talked about Eddie’s approach to solos:
“When I was playing guitar, I always wanted to learn how to solo. There were always so many notes to learn on a big fretboard and how to use a whammy bar. I learned how to play guitar using an Epiphone Telecaster. I was listening to Van Halen starting with ‘Runnin’ with the Devil,’ then ‘Eruption,’ then ‘You Really Got Me.’ After that, you have ‘Ain’t Talkin’ ‘Bout Love,’ and I was floored because of his solo in that song. I could pick out the notes he was playing. He rewrote the guitar handbook with that solo for three decades with ‘Eruption.'”
“When [Van Halen] came out, everybody tried to be Eddie Van Halen,” he continued. “[‘Ain’t Talkin’ Bout Love’ has] the most melodic solo. It made me think, you don’t have to do blazing solos all the time. You can learn at your own pace and put these things in as you feel comfortable. Eddie could have easily put the most blistering solo of all time in ‘Ain’t Talkin’ ‘Bout Love’ or in ‘Running with the Devil.’ The guy played complimentary solos to the song, and that defined him as one of the greatest. Even though he could do ‘Eruption,’ and it was his forte, he could play melodically and captivate you with just a hand full of notes. I’m a guitar player, and we can be the vainest group of people; we dictated that we are going to take a few extra minutes in a song to showcase what I can do. [Laughing] I’m that guy as well as the lead singer. Guitar solos have always just been a thing in our band. I’m glad they are because I honestly love them.”
You can read Robertson’s entire interview HERE.
Black Stone Cherry formed in 2001 in Edmonton, Kentucky, United States. Here is “Again” from their latest album ‘The Human Condition’: