THRILLER TURNS 30: Eddie Van Halen takes credit for improving ‘Beat It’

Originally posted on WTVR.com:

By Denise Quan

(CNN) — Eddie Van Halen sits on a sofa in his home studio, smoking an electronic cigarette and reminiscing about the 30th anniversary of Michael Jackson’s masterpiece album, “Thriller.”

“It seems like yesterday, doesn’t it,” he says softly. “It would have been fun to work with him again.”

Van Halen was a surprise guest on “Beat It,” the album’s third single. His blazing guitar solo lasted all of 20 seconds and took half an hour to record. He did it for free, as a favor to producer Quincy Jones, while the rest of his Van Halen bandmates were out of town.

“I said to myself, ‘Who is going to know that I played on this kid’s record, right? Nobody’s going to find out.’ Wrong!” he laughs. “Big-time wrong. It ended up being Record of the Year.”

The Rock and Roll Hall of Famer recently revealed to CNN…

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