The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame honored Eddie Van Halen during their 2020 induction ceremony aired earlier tonight on HBO.
Guitarists Slash, Kirk Hammett and Tom Morello all gave tributes. Below are each of their comments:
Eddie Van Halen was a tremendously gifted musician. His style and his sound were completely unique to him. He had a massive impact on guitar playing. I don’t think there’s anybody that’s picked up the guitar since 1978 that hasn’t been touched in some way by Eddie Van Halen’s influence. I’m going to miss his playing and I’m going to miss him as a friend.
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 the most simplest thing – a harmonic on his string – and brought it into this realm of technique that no-one even thought was possible. He was from a different planet.
Eddie Van Halen was the Mozart of our generation. He had the kind of talent that maybe comes around once a century. Eddie Van Halen inspired me to play 20,000 hours, to try to get within 100 miles of his inspired mastery of the electric guitar.
Archival footage of Eddie was shown on screen while all three guitarists spoke.
The 2020 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony event was originally scheduled to take place in May, but was postponed due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Instead, a virtual event featuring pre-recorded segments was broadcast as part of an HBO special.
Below is the tribute segment uploaded to YouTube by Mike Visconti: