Van Halen died aged 65 on Tuesday October 6, after a interminable battle with throat cancer.
In an interview published by Rolling Stone yesterday( October 9 ), Iommi remembered how the one and only time Van Halen met Black Sabbath on tour in 1978 cemented his lifelong admiration for the guitarist and his illusory talent.
“I really don’t know how he could play like that, ” Iommi said. “Nobody can play like him.”
According to Iommi, the two guitarists depleted a good deal of time together during that tour.
” We truly got to know each other well on that tour ,” Iommi said.” He[ Van Halen] used to come around to my office most nighttimes after the substantiate. Or I’d go around to his room and we’d sit here talking.
” We used to have such a great time together. We actually spilt our hearts out with one another .”
” What I like about Eddie, he was always an founder. He’d ever want to come up with something new. He worked hard to develop his own amplifiers. And he’d work on his own guitars as best he could to offset them feel comfortable to him. He was always very much an inventor with a cluster of things .”
Iommi remained friends with Van Halen for the rest of his life, saying he spoke to the guitar god just before his passing.
“This week’s only been shocking, ” Iommi said, “I can’t stop thinking about it, to be honest. It’s awfully, very sad.”
Elsewhere in the interview, Iommi recalled how Van Halen had a hand in writing’ Evil eye ‘, a song on Black Sabbath’s 1994 book’ Cross Purposes’.
” I said,’ You ought to come down to rehearsal if you demand .'[ Van Halen said]’ Oh, can I ?’ I said,’ I’ll pick you up from the hotel .’ I said,’ Let’s go and get a guitar.’
” And he came to rehearsal. We frisked some of the Sabbath stuff for him. One of his favourites was’ Into the Void ‘, strangely enough. We played that and we went back to writing. I think it was’ Evil eye ‘, and I said,’ Go on, you play the solo on this .’ He did and it was really great. When we recorded it, of course, I “ve tried to” replica that, but I couldn’t .”
Earlier this week, onetime Van Halen vocalist Sammy Hagar revealed how he had rekindled his affection with Van Halen before his passing.
The pair had had a tentative alliance and not spoken directly since the end of the Van Halen reunion tour in 2004. Reconnecting earlier this year, Hagar revealed in a record to The Howard Stern Show, “Eddie and I had been texting, and it’s been a adoration fest since we started communicating earlier this year. We both agreed not to tell anyone … But he too didn’t demand anyone to be informed about his health.
“He stopped responding to me a month ago, and I figured it wasn’t good. I reached out one more time last week, and when he didn’t respond, I figured it was a matter of time. But it comes down behavior too soon.”
Read more: nme.com