Steve Stevens Says Michael Jackson Once Impersonated David Lee Roth In Front Of Him
For an interview, Billy Idol guitarist Steve Stevens recently appeared on Ultimate Classic Rock. He shared a little-known memory with Michael Jackson when the King of Pop once impersonated David Lee Roth.
In 1988, Michael Jackson released his seventh studio album, ‘Bad,’ and Stevens contributed to one of the album’s songs called ‘Dirty Diana’ by playing its guitar solo.
As we all know, Michael Jackson asked Eddie Van Halen to add a guitar solo to ‘Beat It’ in 1982. The track peaked at number one on various music charts and received many awards after then. Encouraged by the massive success of his collaboration with a rock guitarist, Jackson thought that Steve Stevens might also have something to contribute. Hence, the two came together at the studio.
Stevens recalled his conversation with the King of Pop at the studio. Jackson asked him whether he knew Eddie Van Halen played on ‘Beat It.’ Of course, there was no way Steve didn’t know about that. Then, Michael Jackson started to impersonate David Lee Roth in front of him. The guitarist revealed that he felt very lucky at that moment to witness something no one would probably ever see. Indeed, he will never forget this moment as he was super shocked by what he just saw.
Here is how Steve Stevens recalled his special moment with Michael Jackson:
“At one point, he asked me, ‘Oh, do you know Eddie?’ I go, ‘Yeah, I know Eddie.’ And he goes, ‘Yeah, he played on ‘Beat It.” Like who doesn’t know that? I go, ‘Yes, Michael. I know that’s Eddie Van Halen on ‘Beat It.” He goes, ‘Do you like Van Halen? I like Van Halen. And he proceeded to do — now if you can imagine this, this is Michael Jackson, doing an impression of David Lee Roth.
Now, that is something that probably I saw, and no one else on the planet. He did the whole, ‘Look at all the people here!’ Great, man. That was the moment that I said, you know, I’m like pinching myself. I go, ‘Am I watching Michael Jackson impersonate David Lee Roth? Is that really what I’m seeing?'”
You can listen to ‘Beat It’ and ‘Dirty Diana’ below.