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Okay, as long as someone got the Jimmy Page vs. Jimi Hendrix debate going, let's solve the Jimmy Page vs. Eddie Van Halen argument once and for all.

Edward Lodewijk Van Halen: Definitely the better lead player. The more innovative guitarist, especially considering he came along just when everyone thought it had all been done. If you think tapping is all there was to him, you need to hear some of the bootlegs when Van Halen was playing in high school gyms and small bars. His playing was at its unbelievable peak then, when he was using just a Les Paul, Jr. -- no vibrato bar -- into a Marshall. Also, the Nashville 1978 makeup show with Black Sabbath: what an incredible ovation to an incredible solo!

James Patrick Page: Despite Edward's superior dexterity and imagination around the guitar and guitar solo itself, there's no comparing the two as songwriters, however much I love "In a Simple Rhyme" or "Hang `em High." Jimmy's songs, like "Tangerine" or "What Is and What Should Never Be," resonate with me on a much deeper level than anything Ed has done. Also as a producer, who's done anything as good, much less better, than Led Zeppelin I? Possibly the best-produced album ever. (I don't discount JPJ had a LOT to do with all of this.)

Let me hear Ed rip a big solo in his heyday, but if I'm going to listen to one guy's of albums all day, let it be those by Jimmy Page.

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Okay, as long as someone got the Jimmy Page vs. Jimi Hendrix debate going, let's solve the Jimmy Page vs. Eddie Van Halen argument once and for all.

Edward Lodewijk Van Halen: Definitely the better lead player. The more innovative guitarist, especially considering he came along just when everyone thought it had all been done. If you think tapping is all there was to him, you need to hear some of the bootlegs when Van Halen was playing in high school gyms and small bars. His playing was at its unbelievable peak then, when he was using just a Les Paul, Jr. -- no vibrato bar -- into a Marshall. Also, the Nashville 1978 makeup show with Black Sabbath: what an incredible ovation to an incredible solo!

James Patrick Page: Despite Edward's superior dexterity and imagination around the guitar and guitar solo itself, there's no comparing the two as songwriters, however much I love "In a Simple Rhyme" or "Hang `em High." Jimmy's songs, like "Tangerine" or "What Is and What Should Never Be," resonate with me on a much deeper level than anything Ed has done. Also as a producer, who's done anything as good, much less better, than Led Zeppelin I? Possibly the best-produced album ever. (I don't discount JPJ had a LOT to do with all of this.)

Let me hear Ed rip a big solo in his heyday, but if I'm going to listen to one guy's of albums all day, let it be those by Jimmy Page.

Bullshit. Tapping and wang bars proved to be an evolutionary dead end in music, but the innovations of Page still make up the backbone of hard rock. So that refutes the innovation claim. EVH may have speed and cleanliness to his playing, but in terms of improvisational composition Page is better than EVH. Dexterity, you might have a point, but imagination around the guitar and the guitar solo itself? Bullshit. Once you've heard Eruption you've heard all of Eddie's tricks really. Compared to Page, EVH has a grey withered husk of an imagination.

When Franz List and Chopin played together, List had more complex technique, but Chopin moved the audience to tears. Emotion and idiosyncracy count at least as much as speed, and they are why Page will ALWAYS trump EVH. Shred rock guitarists with no grounding in roots music went out with acid washed jeans; but Page never goes out.

What's more, with a single well placed gig in London, Page's one concert reunion upstaged EVH's whole reunion tour. What does that tell you?

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Bullshit. Tapping and wang bars proved to be an evolutionary dead end in music, but the innovations of Page still make up the backbone of hard rock. So that refutes the innovation claim. EVH may have speed and cleanliness to his playing, but in terms of improvisational composition Page is better than EVH. Dexterity, you might have a point, but imagination around the guitar and the guitar solo itself? Bullshit. Once you've heard Eruption you've heard all of Eddie's tricks really. Compared to Page, EVH has a grey withered husk of an imagination.

When Franz List and Chopin played together, List had more complex technique, but Chopin moved the audience to tears. Emotion and idiosyncracy count at least as much as speed, and they are why Page will ALWAYS trump EVH. Shred rock guitarists with no grounding in roots music went out with acid washed jeans; but Page never goes out.

What's more, with a single well placed gig in London, Page's one concert reunion upstaged EVH's whole reunion tour. What does that tell you?

Right on and well put! EVH never grew as a guitarist and never did anything innovative after their first album, while JP was the complete opposite. EVH inspired so much horrendous music. Basically all the hair bands of the 80's. While Zep did inspire some bad music, when bands just take the obvious elements of their music. They influenced quite a bit of good bands as well. The whole Seattle scene of the 90's, White Stripes as well as any guitar driven band that came after Zep. The list is endless.

Edited by SuperDave
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I never personally liked Eddie or his music. He's always voted one of the best guitarist around and i never saw it along with Jeff Beck. But if I had to make a list of Guitarist who don't sing. Page will be no.1 and Beck and Van Halen (not Van Hagar) will be in my top 5. The reason i say this because i think Hendrix and Clapton get to much credit as a guitarist who sings and write songs.

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Edward Lodewijk Van Halen: If you think tapping is all there was to him, you need to hear some of the bootlegs when Van Halen was playing in high school gyms and small bars.

Here is the flaw in your argument that EVH is more imaginative than Page.

Van Halen got the idea for his finger tapping technique from the Page solo on Heartbreaker. Thus without Page, there would have been no finger tapping. Thus Page wins.

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What's up with these "vs" threads? Hendrix, Page, Van Halen are all incredible in their own right. When you get as good as these guys were/are, it's just a matter of opinion, and that's it.

Edited by Deezer
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unless i'm mistaken eddie wasn't two hand tapping until late '77 or so. he got the idea from ace frehley. ace used to tap with his left hand fingers and right hand with his pick. ace in turn was inspired by jimmy's heartbreaker.

as far as comparing the two. eddie is a lamborghini jimmy is a saturn v rocket...

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jimmy for sure. i never thought "technical" playing was all that impressive. anyone can learn to play really fast if they try hard enough. all these guitar players that i hear being labeled "technical" players really seem to do is play really fast and loud, where's the sense in that? wow, you can play really fast, can you play something melodic? something that makes sense? something that sounds different than every solo you've ever done? technical can be impressive and all, but without emotion it's just a kid with a guitar who thinks he can play music.

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jimmy for sure. i never thought "technical" playing was all that impressive. anyone can learn to play really fast if they try hard enough. all these guitar players that i hear being labeled "technical" players really seem to do is play really fast and loud, where's the sense in that? wow, you can play really fast, can you play something melodic? something that makes sense? something that sounds different than every solo you've ever done? technical can be impressive and all, but without emotion it's just a kid with a guitar who thinks he can play music.

Well said.

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Just wanted to let everyone know that Eddy and Jimmy were not the ones who invented tapping. I've seen old footage of Les Paul who was tapping the strings......way before Eddy and Jimmy were born.

Jimmy covered more ground on the guitar than Eddy. I've listened to alot of Eddy and there's really only one cd that he and his mates did anything worth listenning as far as guitar. The F.U.C.K cd.

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I have seen videos of Jimmy play live and I have seen Van Halen live. Jimmy is an amazing guitar player. In my opinion, I say he's God. (plus its an inside joke with my friends).

Eddie is amazing, coming out with the tapping and pitch harmonics but he can't do inprov like Page and change the beat up in a song. I have seen VH live, amazing but not the same as Page. Going from "and the Cradle Will Rock" to "smoke on the Water" wasn't as smooth as going from "Dazed and Confused" to "San Fransisco."

as Magic Sam said, "...Once you've heard Eruption you've heard all of Eddie's tricks really."

If they were in a guitar contest, Jimmy would win becuase he has many more tunings he can use, more experience, different tones and tricks.

Eddie can only use the same ones.

overall, Jimmy Page is God and EVH is his disciple.

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van halen was talented but never really put himself on the top shelf. quick notes and a band with dance moves really doesnt compare to page, hendrix, garcia, or anastasio even. i also think van halen's notes weren't as nearly soulful as just basically entertaining (no way he could pull off a SIBLY or villanova junction...i mean common he did 'bad', and that STILL sounded like a routine van halen solo)

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van halen was talented but never really put himself on the top shelf. quick notes and a band with dance moves really doesnt compare to page, hendrix, garcia, or anastasio even. i also think van halen's notes weren't as nearly soulful as just basically entertaining (no way he could pull off a SIBLY or villanova junction...i mean common he did 'bad', and that STILL sounded like a routine van halen solo)

YES! someone else giving Trey some recognition :D

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Eddie is a technically amazing guitarist, but IMO he comes up short in the musical ideas department, in the sense that he doesn't communicate anything melodically - it's all flash.

Did Jeff Beck really say he never "got" EVH? Interesting.

P.S. I thought Eddie got the tapping thing from Allan Holdsworth.

Edited by FireOpal
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I never personally liked Eddie or his music. He's always voted one of the best guitarist around and i never saw it along with Jeff Beck. But if I had to make a list of Guitarist who don't sing. Page will be no.1 and Beck and Van Halen (not Van Hagar) will be in my top 5. The reason i say this because i think Hendrix and Clapton get to much credit as a guitarist who sings and write songs.

Have you ever saw Clapton live? He is awesome. Jimmy is still my number 1 and always will be .I like Eddie but he is down the list a little ways.His verry early stuff is his best and i have heard a few of the early boots and there cool .Saw him live in 78 (3) times also saw him a couple of years ago not much has changed he has remained stagnant while Jimmy has steadily climbed the stairway to well you know.

We will never know if Hendrix would have reached the same status but he was damn good in his day.

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:D

I've never heard Edward play any real soulful blues except for that Bluesbreaker project he did with Brian May and that was more shredding than real blues. I'll take emotion over technique any day.

now thats the most intelligent statement i have read on this forum. (aint no levy in Van land)

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I used to love Van Halen but Eddie, once a great technical innovator, is now a washed up, finished, gone, burnt meth casualty. His tone is terrible now, and his playing is souless, lost, and out of tune. Check out this clip from a few weeks back, not a good sign when you've been on tour for 4 months and you're still this bad. Note: this is not one of those fake audio overdubbed youtube clips, IT IS THE REAL EVH (other clips from the same show show the same thing). Sad. EVH used to be great, but never as good as Jimmy, especially not now. Jimmy has more soul in his small toe, always has, and Page has way more range, and is a far better improviser, songwriter, and producer. Van Halen was cool and fun in it's day, but let's face it, hammer-ons and that played-out overused horse noise on every solo only goes so far. Jimmy at the O2 puts him to shame, even at 64 years old.

Here another sad clip from this new Halen "reunion" tour, eddie should've had another tuned guitar in his hands within 20 seconds max, no excuse for this shoddiness when people are paying $250 for tickets. Not to mention David Lee Roth now acts like a gay Vegas parody of his former self, and Wolfie, a black hole of charisma, was brought in by Ed to replace the vocal backbone, solid team player and only cool guy in the band Mikey Anthony, just for the sake of having his kid in the band..

Edited by Tea41
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Ah this old chestnut <_< , OK lets have my take on things, yes Eddie could play faster and make some great noises out of his guitar, but Page was an innovator for using the guitar as a voice to create a sound scape where as Ed used it to create jaw dropping guitar stuff !!

Both fabulous in their own way, but to me the most important thing is Phrasing, when learning an instrument, you can learn to play easy/hard chords, learn to play slow and learn to shred but when it comes to phrasing that the hard part and for me its hard to learn some of Eddies fast playing and Even more stunning to me his rhythm playing which gets overlooked.

With jimmy Page you get phrasing even from the most simple of things and to get that right takes class !! Ed's fast runs are pretty straight forward and not to much emphasise on phrasing is going on a bit like a lot of the metal guitarists of today, lots of shred but not alot of phrasing going on, but every now and then like say Joe satriani he can shred but also has feel/taste and above all his phrasing on simple bits like the opening of Always with me and Always with you is wonderful (soz to go off topic).

So for me Jim gets it for me for overall musician but Ed for coming along and showing us guitarists that there is more ways to skin a cat !!!

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I used to love Van Halen but Eddie, once a great technical innovator, is now a washed up, finished, gone, burnt meth casualty. His tone is terrible now, and his playing is souless, lost, and out of tune. Check out this clip from a few weeks back, not a good sign when you've been on tour for 4 months and you're still this bad. Note: this is not one of those fake audio overdubbed youtube clips, IT IS THE REAL EVH (other clips from the same show show the same thing). Sad. EVH used to be great, but never as good as Jimmy, especially not now. Jimmy has more soul in his small toe, always has, and Page has way more range, and is a far better improviser, songwriter, and producer. Van Halen was cool and fun in it's day, but let's face it, hammer-ons and that played-out overused horse noise on every solo only goes so far. Jimmy at the O2 puts him to shame.

White Summer/ Black Mountain Side owns that solo. I saw VH play, the solo Eddie played that night was good though.

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definitely love me some trey. ta boot ta boot does zeppelin even have free streaming internet radio yet? :blink:

most certainly not. and I don't see a lovely stream of high quality official live releases either.

though i don't recall Trey ever whipping out the old violin bow either, so Jimmy's got that on him at least ;)

Edited by Zephyrus
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What's up with these "vs" threads? Hendrix, Page, Van Halen are all incredible in their own right. When you get as good as these guys were/are, it's just a matter of opinion, and that's it.

it gives us something to argue about.. there's not much zep news to speculate on that hasnt been debated..

come september though.. it'll be all led zep reunion gossip

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