Sources: LA Weekly – Matt Wake| Edited By – All Things Michael


As any good music geek knows, YouTube is a treasure trove of isolated tracks — a single vocal or instrument lifted from a familiar song, sometimes from the master tapes, sometimes pulled out of the mix by an enterprising amateur sound engineer. It’s a fascinating, stark and entirely new context in which to hear a guitar solo, drum pattern or lead vocal that was heretofore as familiar as your couch. Sometimes the revelations are impressive. Sometimes less so.

A YouTube search for “isolated tracks” nets 35,700 results, including Sting’s “Message in a Bottle” bass, Adele’s “Rolling in the Deep” vocals, Notorious B.I.G.’s “Machine Gun Funk” rap and a surprising amount of Dream Theater. So curating a list of the best-ever isolated tracks is a vast and somewhat impossible task. And here goes!

Van Halen, “Somebody Get Me a Doctor” guitar

You can assemble a respectable isolated tracks best-of list from Eddie Van Halen guitar parts alone. The easy choice — which we considered — is Eddie’s wildfire solo from Michael Jackson’s 1982 number-one hit “Beat It,” perhaps The Gloved One’s greatest single of all time. But those 32 seconds are burned into the DNA of virtually everyone who’s ever heard them. Guitar geeks and otherwise will hear “Somebody Get Me a Doctor” with fresher ears. From the first three aircraft-carrier-sized chords, Eddie’s wicked tone and vastly underrated rhythm playing is at the forefront. About 0:33 in, he begins a helicopter-blade rhythm. At 1:15, EVH starts another patterned accented with volume swells, which have the effect of sounding like time is being reversed. And then Eddie literally makes the hair on the back of your neck stand up with the first licks of his solo at 1:26.

The Jackson 5, “ABC” vocals

Michael Jackson was only around 11 years old when he cut this jaw-dropping performance. Yeah, the pre-puberty thing helped hit those helium-high notes, but what made Jackson such a musical phenom was the natural, worldly feel — at least a decade beyond his years — he brought to his singing at such an early age.

Whitney Houston, “How Will I Know” vocals

This isolated vocal almost sounds better than the entire mixed 1985 track from which it’s taken, which is marred by gaudy ’80s production. Houston’s pre-debauchery upper-register sparkles like church stained glass. She reportedly sang her own background vocals on “How Will I Know,” a George Merrill and Shannon Rubicam composition originally intended for Janet Jackson, forming an all-Whitney choir. Her melisma curves without detouring into Diva City. And check out the cloud-piercing climb beginning at 2:49.


See the full list here

How To Play Eddie Van Halens’ ‘Beat It’ Guitar Solo – Lesson With Chris Zoupa

Sources: Ultimate Guitar – By Chris Zoupa | Edited By – All Things Michael

Eb Standard tuning: Eb Ab Db Gb Bb Eb

Difficulty: Advanced

This solo is diamond encrusted win. I remember hearing this solo as a wee tot and thinking “Hot diggity damn, that’s bogus!” Keep in mind it was the early ’90s and I would’ve been maybe 6. Now, an older gentleman, I put aside about 4 hours to nail and transcribe this solo properly and here we are.

The majority of this solo is a bit of whammy action and some tapping EVH style and if you’re familiar with Eddie‘s soloing style from other songs, you’ll probably see some motifs and themes of his you’ve seen in other songs and solos. As usual we’ll break the solo down into sections and look at anything that could be potentially problematic. I’ll also leave a link to YouTube and the tab at the bottom of the article.

Section 1 Tips

The opening to this solo is with the rising whammy. However the tapped and artificial harmonics are a little tricky (see excerpt below).


You’ll notice in the 3rd bar of this excerpt that there’s 2 artificial harmonics on the 14th fretof the 3rd string. Due to the tension changing between the 7th fret and the 9th fret the pitch changes as well as the technique. I found it easy to tap the first one and do an artificial pinch harmonic by gently brushing the 14th fret with my index finger on my picking hand and then plucking the string with my thumb. This is a very Eric Johnson way of getting harmonics smooth and less squealy harmonics. I’m not 100% whether Eddie taps both of them but it’s extremely difficult to get a clear tap harmonic the second time. If you listen to the John 5 cover of this song he plays a tap then the pinches like I do.

Section 2 Tips

The section deals with a pretty weird and complex legato lick that stretches from the 12th to19th fret. Let’s have a look at it as a 6 note shape (see diagram below).


I tried a 2 formations and pointer-middle-pinky finger worked the best for me. If you use the ring finger on such a massive stretch the pinky note can be especially hard to get to. Get as comfortable as you can with this shape and the fingering you with to use as the lick we have to put with it is pretty tough (see excerpt below).


Pay close attention to legato in this lick and be wary of questionably timed string changes. I dare say this little phrase nearly made me give up on the entire solo so be super patient with it guys.

Section 3 Tips

The tapping in the final section is a relatively simple idea played across 2 strings. There’s a bit of a stretch on the fretting hand but the tapping itself is pretty simple (see excerpt below).


The timing on this is pretty predictable and consistent. We’re basically working in semiquaver (or sixteenth note) triplets. It’s not ridiculously fast on the tapping hand so you have options as to whether you want to have 2 tapping fingers (one per string), or to just let one tapping finger do all the work.

Finally, I wanted to have a look at the epic and fist raising crescendo of the solo that uses an aggressively attacked tremolo picking phrase (see excerpt below).


Once again we’re ealing with semiquaver triplets. The timing on this is important. I listened to the solo countless times to nail the phrasing and to get the tremmed notes changing at the right time. If you can get your hands on a program to slow solos/songs down I would definitely recommend it for this phrase in particular.

Take care guys and happy shredding!

Download tab here.

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Eddie Van Halen And Michael Jackson On Stage

Source: 103. 7 The Loon | All Things Michael

Guitarist Van Halen Joins Pop Star Jackson To Perform 'Beat It'

We’ve all heard Eddie Van Halen‘s solo on Michael Jackson‘s ‘Beat It‘ more times than we can count. Only a select few, however, have heard it performed live.

In fact, it was only due to a lucky fluke of scheduling that Van Halen happened to be in town when Jackson — on the ‘Victory’ tour with his siblings as the Jacksons — arrived in Dallas for the group’s July 14, 1984 concert. It was a huge year for Jackson as well as Van Halen, with both acts riding high on the success of career-defining LPs; naturally, given that Eddie’s distinctive cameo had helped ‘Beat It’ hit No. 1 earlier in the spring, they couldn’t pass up the opportunity to recreate the magic in front of an audience.

You can watch it all go down in the video embedded above, starting with Jackson shouting “You got it, Eddie, Eddie, Eddie!” in the moments leading into Van Halen’s time in the spotlight. Of course, it’s just one of many outstanding solos in the legendary guitarist’s career, but his contribution to ‘Beat It’ remains a personal highlight for Eddie; as he revealed in a 2011 interview, it’s actually his favorite collaboration. “When I got there it took me 15 minutes to rearrange the song, and I played two solos and told them they could pick the one they liked best,” he recalled. “Then Michael walked in and said, ‘Wow! I really like that high, fast stuff you do.’ It was a lot of fun to do. It’s crazy that something could take such a short amount of time and can grow into something beyond anything you could ever imagine.”

Van Halen got a taste of its eventual impact while standing in line at a record store when ‘Beat It’ started playing. “The solo comes on, and I hear these kids in front of me going, ‘Listen to this guy trying to sound like Eddie Van Halen.’ I tapped him on the shoulder and said, ‘That is me!’ That was hilarious,” he laughed in a separate interview. “I have a lot of respect for Michael. He’s going to be sorely missed. I’d be curious as to what he’d be doing right now.”

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April 30, 1983: ‘Beat It’ Stays At Number One For Three Weeks On The US Singles Chart

Source: MTV India


If you’re a Michael Jackson fan, you must have definitely heard of his catchy track ‘Beat it’. The track was known best for its thumping beats and Michael’s groovy dance moves. However, on this day in music, his track started a three week run at No.1 on the U.S singles and solo chart. Here’s a little more information about the track.

The track was originally written and performed by Michael himself and produced by Quincy Jones. It is the third single from the singer’s sixth solo album, Thriller. Eddie Van Halen played the song’s distinctive overdriven guitar solo, but was prevented by his record label from appearing in the music video. He did appear on stage with Jackson in Dallas during the Jackson brothers “Victory Tour.” Following the successful chart performances of the Thriller singles “The Girl Is Mine” and “Billie Jean”, “Beat It” was released on the 3rd of February in 1983 as the album’s third single.

The song was also promoted with a short film that featured Jackson bringing two gangs together through the power of music and dance. It is one of the artist’s most recognizable tracks.

Because the track is such a great sound, it received the Grammy Awards for Record of the Year and Best Male Rock Vocal Performance, and not to forget, two American Music Awards. It was later inducted into the Music Video Producers Hall of Fame. “Beat It” (along with the song’s music video) propelled Thriller into becoming the best-selling album of all time. The single was certified platinum in the United States in 1989. Rolling Stone placed “Beat It” on the 344th spot of its list of “The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time.” “Beat It” was also ranked number 81 on Rolling Stone’s “100 Greatest Guitar Songs of All Time.”

Over the years, the track has also been experimented, covered, parodied and sampled by numerous artists including, Pierce the Veil, Fall Out Boy, Pomplamoose, Justin Bieber, Alvin and the Chipmunks, Fergie, and even Eminem! After reading the artists on this list, you can imagine how brilliant and successful the track was!



Gif sources: bushwickdaily & rachaelfoxton.tumblr

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Carvin Creates One-of-a-Kind, Michael Jackson-Inspired Guitar for Jason Becker – Video

Source: Guitar World – By Damien Fanelli


Below, check out a brand-new video that shows the story behind Jason Becker’s one-of-a-kind, Michael Jackson-inspired Carvin guitar.

“Even as I was trying to become a rock god, Michael Jackson was the ultimate magic rock star to me,” Becker said.

“I loved his music, his scene and style. He transcended musical categories.

“Everyone dug Michael, and I was no exception. I was inspired by his flash, uniqueness and kick-ass music. I wanted to be slick like him. It also didn’t hurt that he liked to rock and used Eddie Van Halen on ‘Beat It.’

“I’ve always wanted a guitar that reflects his style.”

See what Carvin came up with!

For more about Carvin, visit

P.S.: This video features a track called “Nate You Funky Mofo” from Becker’s Boy Meets Guitar album.


Video: Eddie Van Halen and Michael Jackson Perform “Beat It” Live in 1984

Source: Guitar World – By Damian Fanelli


Yes, we’ve all heard Michael Jackson’s 1983 mega-hit, “Beat It,” which features Eddie Van Halen on guitar. But have you seen Eddie perform the song live with Jackson and his band?

We hadn’t — until we stumbled upon this pro-shot video.

According to the information provided with the clip, this performance took place July 14, 1984, in Dallas, Texas. Eddie (and his guitar) happened to be in town that night, so he joined Jackson on stage.

We apologize for the poor sound and audio quality, but take note that Eddie’s guitar is front and center in the mix during the solo.

Jackson screams, “You got it, Eddie, Eddie, Eddie!” just as the solo kicks off. Enjoy!

In the all-new February 2014 issue of Guitar World, Eddie Van Halen looks back on Van Halen’s 1984 album and the creation of his home studio, 5150. For an excerpt of the new interview, head HERE. To check out the issue at the Guitar World Online Store, head HERE.

Michael Jackson? More Like Metal Jackson!

Source: Noise Creep

Cover songs can be really tasteful or an abject failure in paying tribute to one of a band’s favorite artists. Every now and then some peculiar covers pop up in metal where a band will play something entirely out of their realm. In this case, the band Raintime covers the Michael Jackson hit ‘Beat It.’

Eddie Van Halen played the guitar solo on the original tune, so ‘Beat It’ isn’t so far out of focus, but it’s still unexpected for a metal cover. Raintime go all out here, giving the song’s groovy upbeat feel some distortion with some soaring, gritty vocals. Gang chants dominate the chorus to help add some more metal flavor and it couldn’t be better!

Eddie Van Halen On Collaborating with Michael Jackson For Thriller

Source: Van Halen News Desk


Thirty one years ago, Michael Jackson’s colossal album, Thriller, was released. Eddie Van Halen collaborated with Jackson on the album’s third single,”Beat It,” and wrote and performed the guitar solo for the song.

Upon the song’s release on the radio, Eddie remembers standing in line at Tower Records when ‘Beat It’ started playing.

“The solo comes on, and I hear these kids in front of me going, ‘Listen to this guy trying to sound like Eddie Van Halen.’ I tapped him on the shoulder and said, ‘That is me!’ That was hilarious.”

Eddie reflects on his experience working with award-winning producer/songwriter Quincy Jones and Michael Jackson in the later half of 1982:

“Certain people in the band at that time didn’t like me doing things outside the group. But Roth happened to be in the Amazon or somewhere, and Mike was at Disneyland and Al was up in Canada or something, and I was home alone. So I thought, well, they’ll never know. Seriously: who’s going to know that I played on a black guy’s record? Michael said ‘I love that high fast stuff you do.’ So I played two solos over it and said, ‘You guys pick the one you want.’ It was 20 minutes out of my day. I did it for free and later everybody was telling me, you could have got a royalty point out of that record. But it didn’t matter because Quincy wrote me a letter thanking me, and he signed it ‘The Asshole’. I framed it. Classic.”

“Beat It” hit the charts on 3/12/83, lasting 15 weeks and reaching #1 in the U.S. on April 30th, 1983, and #3 in the U.K.