Eddie Van Halen is featured on two songs on hip hop legend LL Cool J‘s upcoming album, “Authentic”, due out on April 30.
The guitarist can be heard on the tracks “We’re The Greatest” and “Not Leaving You Tonight”.
In a recent interview with CBS Local, LL Cool J said: “I just really wanted to work with the best, work with people that I respect, people that I look up to, people that impress me, people that I believe are truly super talented. I feel like Eddie falls in that category.”
He added: “I am in no way trying to put myself on the level of VAN HALEN or say that … I don’t want VAN HALEN fans to get the wrong impression like I don’t respect their legacy or who they are. I do. I just wanted to do something with Eddie that I think is cool. And I think we accomplished something great. I hope they dig it.”
A 90-second audio sample of “We’re The Greatest” can be streamed in the YouTube clip below.
“Authentic” is LL‘s 13th studio album and first in five years.
Among other guests appearing on the CD is RAGE AGAINST THE MACHINE guitarist Tom Morello, who can be heard on the song “Whaddup”.
Eddie Van Halen famously made a guest appeance on Michael Jackson‘s masterpiece album, “Thriller”. He was a surprise guest on “Beat It”, the LP’s third single. According to CNN, 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!” Eddie recalled in a 2012 interview with CNN. “Big-time wrong. It ended up being Record Of The Year.”
VAN HALEN will close out the annual Rock USA festival, scheduled for July 17 through July 20 in Oshkosh, Wisconsin.