Van Halen was one of the biggest Hard Rock bands of all time and in an interview with Guitar World back in 2014, guitarist Eddie Van Halen said that one song of the band was inspired by another legendary Hard Rock band: AC/DC.
When the interviewer praised “Drop Dead Legs” from the 1984 album, the musician recalled that when he wrote the tune, he was inspired by AC/DC’s “Back In Black”.
Eddie Van Halen said about “Drop Dead Legs” being was inspired by AC/DC’s “Back In Black”:
“That was inspired by AC/DC’s Back in Black. I was grooving on that beat, although I think that Drop Dead Legs is slower. Whatever I listen to somehow is filtered through me and comes out differently. So Drop Dead Legs is almost a jazz version of Back in Black. The descending progression is similar, but I put a lot more notes in there.”
The solos almost always go into a different place than the rest of the song. Sometimes you even change keys, like on Jump, Top Jimmy and Panama.
“I view solos as a song within a song. From day one that is just the way that I write things. I always start with some intro or theme and establish a riff. Then after the solo there’s some kind of breakdown section, that’s there in almost every song, or else it returns to the intro.”
AC/DC’s Angus Young talked about Eddie Van Halen’s death
The late Van Halen guitarist Eddie Van Halen died in October 2020 at the age of 65, victim of throat cancer and all the rock and roll community paid tribute, including AC/DC guitarist Angus Young that said: “Eddie was a guitar wonder, his playing pure wizardry. To the world of music he was a special gift. To those of us fortunate enough to have met him, a very special person. He leaves a big hole in a lot of hearts. To the Van Halen family my heartfelt sympathies.”
— AC/DC (@acdc) October 7, 2020
Early in his career, Eddie played the drums and the keyboard and Alex played the guitar and studied the keyboard. Over time Alex got better than Eddie on drums, and Eddie started to train the guitar, overcoming him.
Eddie is one of the most acclaimed guitarists in history. Eventually he received several honors and mentions from the most varied magazines specializing in the subject. Besides, he ranks 8th on the list of the 100 greatest guitarists of all time by Rolling Stone magazine. Also is the 7th on the Gibson list of the 50 best guitarists of all time.