Jimmy Page’s Contribution To Eddie Van Halen’s Tapping Technique

Eddie Van Halen was a musician who became prominent as the primary songwriter and guitarist of the band Van Halen. He co-founded the band back in 1972 along with his brother Alex Van Halen, Mark Stone, and David Lee Roth. Up until his tragic death in 2020, Eddie contributed to the band’s success with his talented guitar playing.

With his distinctive guitar playing style, Eddie became regarded as one of the greatest guitar players in rock music history. Moreover, his most popular musical effort is ‘Eruption’ which is an instrumental guitar solo released in 1978. ‘Eruption’ is widely known as one of the greatest guitar solos of all time and the musical effort which showcased the tapping technique.

Eddie Van Halen was credited as the one who popularized the tapping guitar solo technique. However, it seems that Led Zeppelin’s Jimmy Page was also an influence on Eddie’s tapping. Let’s learn what the iconic guitarist said about Page’s influence on him.

Eddie Van Halen Said He Got The Idea Of Tapping After Watching Jimmy Page

Tapping is a guitar-playing technique that allows guitarists to play rapid arpeggios using both hands on the fretboard. Although the standard playing technique is fretting with one hand and picking with the other, tapping is an extended technique that requires using two hands.

Van Halen’s 1978 instrumental track ‘Eruption’ is regarded among the greatest guitar solos of all time. On the other hand, the solo also presented Eddie Van Halen’s tapping technique. Although Eddie is the one who popularized this technique, he did not actually invent it. In fact, he was influenced by Genesis’ Steve Hackett who is credited with inventing tapping.

Apart from Hackett, Eddie Van Halen had also another influence on his playing technique. According to a previous interview with Guitar World, the iconic guitarist stated that Led Zeppelin’s Jimmy Page was an influence on him. Eddie then revealed he got the idea of tapping after watching Page perform his ‘Heartbreaker’ solo in 1971.

Eddie Van Halen told Guitar World that:

“I think I got the idea of tapping watching Jimmy Page do his ‘Heartbreaker’ solo back in 1971. He was doing a pull-off to an open string, and I thought wait a minute, open string … pull off. I can do that, but what if I use my finger as the nut and move it around? I just kind of took it and ran with it.”

Although Eddie Van Halen departed from this world on October 6, 2020, he is still among the greatest guitarists of all time. With his talented guitar playing and tapping technique as well as his musical achievements, Eddie’s legacy still continues to impress many musicians all around the world.

You can listen to Van Halen’s classic hit ‘Eruption’ and Led Zeppelin’s ‘Heartbreaker’ below.