ACE FREHLEY Says He ‘Probably’ Inspired EDDIE VAN HALEN To Start Tapping

Ace Frehley, the iconic guitarist, recently hinted at a potential influence on Eddie Van Halen’s groundbreaking tapping technique. Tapping, characterized by using both hands to hammer onto the fretboard for swift and fluid note runs, became synonymous with Van Halen’s distinctive sound. Frehley, reflecting on the past, suggests that he might have inadvertently ignited Van Halen’s interest in this innovative approach.

In a candid interview with Chris Shiflett from the FOO FIGHTERS on Premier Guitar’s Shred With Shifty, Frehley was probed about whether he believed Van Halen had drawn inspiration from the original Space Man’s technique. Frehley didn’t hold back, openly sharing his perspective on the matter.

Recalling the pre-fame days of Van Halen, Frehley noted Gene Simmons’ discovery of the band and then delved into memory at Madison Square Garden before Van Halen achieved widespread recognition. “When I was doing my guitar solo at Madison Square Garden before they became famous, Eddie was down in the pit watching every f**king move I made,” Frehley revealed.

Acknowledging a nuanced difference in their tapping styles, Frehley pointed out, “I did it with the pick, I didn’t go with my finger. Eddie probably got some ideas from me, just like I got ideas from other guitar players. But he perfected it. There’s no way I could play some of the solos that he pulled off.”

However, it’s worth noting that in a 2015 interview at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History, Van Halen clarified that his inspiration to tap originated from witnessing Jimmy Page of LED ZEPPELIN perform live at the LA Forum. In that interview, Van Halen even provided a demonstration, emphasizing the multifaceted web of influences that shaped the evolution of guitar techniques in the rock and metal genre.

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