Jeff Beck Hid His Real Personality In Public, His Former Bandmate Explains

The thing about Jeff Beck is that even though he’s not here to bless us with his guitar riffs anymore, his legacy continues to live on through his music and the close bond he shared with family, friends, and bandmates. Talking about bandmates, Tal Wilkenfeld, who’s been playing with Jeff for two years, recently chatted with Spin, recalling fond memories with the guitarist and how he hid his real personality from the public.

So, after an especially troubling flight from New York to England two years ago, where Wilkenfeld learned not to trust the airport pizzas, she finally landed, made her way to Kent, and joined a rehearsal with Beck. The rest was history as the young bassist clicked with the band and started touring and getting into the studio with them.

In the few months she was in England, Wilkenfeld stayed in Jeff and his wife Sandra’s home, who hosted her until she found a place to stay and treated her like a daughter. So, she had the chance to get to know Jeff and his family personally and witness the guitarist’s real personality, hidden from the public.

“He was goofy with us,” said Tal as she recalled Beck’s close relationship with his bandmates. “And that’s not a side he showed a lot of people. He was publicly very quiet, but with the ones he was very close with, he was incredibly goofy and silly. I think that’s what kept him so… fresh.”

Jeff wasn’t as serious as he looked when he was in public, as the guitarist knew how to embrace his child-like enthusiasm towards music, loved to make a few jokes, and laugh off anything. The bassist recalled, “He had that child-like sensibility with music and with life, to just kind of laugh anything off and just make a joke of everything.”

So, the guitarist’s close relationship with his friends and bandmates, the jokester side of his personality as a musician and a friend, made him someone hard to forget. Tal had the pleasure of meeting him, working with him, playing alongside him, and living with him and his wife for a while, so it’s no doubt that Jeff will live on through her memories.