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Eddie Van Halen was honored during the 2020 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction special by three of the biggest guitar icons in rock today: Slash, Kirk Hammett and Tom Morello.

Slash paid tribute saying, “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.”

Hammett followed saying, “Not since Jimi Hendrix had there been a guitar player that had so much impact, and was so inspiring to me…He was just, like, from a different planet.”

Morello drove it all home with one of the best quotes in the entire special: “Eddie Van Halen was the Mozart of our generation.” He added, “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.”


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Erica Banas is a rock/classic rock news blogger who's well versed in etiquette and extraordinarily nice.