Song of the day: Eddie Van Halen & friends – jam

December 1, 2012

This video is from a Les Paul tribute concert that was aired on TV in 1988. As far as I know, it’s never been released on any format anywhere. [Insert upside-down smiley face here.]

(Update: The concert, which was called Les Paul: He Changed The Music, was released on video and then on DVD. Unfortunately, according to this review the DVD is moderately dreadful, as it’s simply a copy of the VHS tape, and “no effort was made to improve the image quality”. So it’s not a proper DVD. It’s just a DVD of a VHS tape. Grrr.)

I recorded the concert on video when it was shown on Australian television, and I was very pleased to have it – until I changed from a VCR to a PVR and left all my old videos behind. (Ah well.)

The part of the concert I treasured the most – and watched repeatedly – was the following clip of Eddie Van Halen jamming with some heavy-duty musicians.

As much as I liked Eddie’s diddly-doodly-diddly-wah-wah-whee playing, the most exciting part of the jam for me was the presence and participation of Tony Levin, one of my all-time favourite bass players. He’s an amazingly good bassist who has played with a bewildering amount of artists (his discography is frighteningly huge). Although Tony has played with hundreds of musicians, he’s associated predominantly with two: Peter Gabriel (you can hear Tony’s bass work on “Sledgehammer“) and King Crimson (try “Sleepless” – and this post).

In case you’re interested, the other two musicians in the video were Jan Hammer on keytar and Rick Marotta on drums.

Here are some other videos from the concert: