Don’t shoot the messenger here but a Whitesnake guitarist says Eddie Van Halen once told him that Jimi Hendrix was just a bit ‘sloppy’.
So this sounds a little bit too ridiculous to comprehend so let’s just take this with a grain of salt: apparently Eddie Van Halen thought fellow guitar god Jimi Hendrix was a bit too “sloppy” for his taste.
At least that’s what former Whitesnake guitarist Adrian Vandenberg says.
During a chat with Kylie Olsson (via Ultimate Guitar), Vandenberg talked quite a bit about Eddie and anecdotes about hanging out with the legendary guitarist back in 1994 when he was recording Manic Eden’s debut (and only) album.
When asked what it was like playing with Eddie, Vandenberg says they “didn’t really play-play, we just were there with guitars on the left.” Instead, the pair ended up chatting about who their favourite guitar player was.
“I said, ‘Well, it’s Jimi Hendrix'” recalls the Whitesnake guitarist. “And [Eddie] thought Jimi Hendrix was too sloppy; his favorite was Eric Clapton.”
Interesting. Again, don’t shoot the messenger, we’re just passing on what Vandenberg said about what Eddie said about Jimi Hendrix.
While we’ll never really know if Eddie actually said that, what we do know is that the guitarist had a lot of respect for Hendrix, even though he was not a fan of comparisons between the two as he thought he was “nothing like Jimi Hendrix.”
Having said that though, he was a pretty big fan of covering Hendrix’s songs. Eddie has been known to perform some of Hendrix’s songs during gigs and he recently covered ‘If 6 Was 9‘, which was released posthumously.
So in short, Eddie may or may not have said he thought Hendrix was “sloppy,” but it looks like he sure did respect the hell out of his fellow guitar god.