Former WHITE LION Guitarist VITO BRATTA Reflects On Meeting EDDIE VAN HALEN - "Eddie Said A Lot Of Nice Things To Me That Day, And I'll Take Them To My Grave; I Was Touched"
May 10, 2023, 9 months ago
In an excerpt from an exclusive Guitar World interview published on May 9th, former White Lion guitarist Vito Bratta reflected on meeting Eddie Van Halen in 1991 during the recording sessions for White Lion's Mane Attraction album. Following is an excerpt from the story.
Bratta: "Once I became established with White Lion in the ‘80s, I got a lot of shit from people who said I was aping his (Eddie Van Halen's) style. That was all bullshit. It got to the point where I met Eddie once, and I asked him, 'Does it freak you out that I play like you?' I thought that because it had been drilled into my head by magazines and stuff.
Now, I’m not the type to use Eddie’s name for whatever – especially since he passed away – but I will say that Eddie complimented me, and that he didn’t agree. What I will say is that when I talked to Eddie, he didn’t agree. I got to meet him once when he came into the studio during the recording of Mane Attraction. He came in, and he was sitting on my 5150 amp. I was blown away. Here I am, standing in the studio, watching Eddie Van Halen sitting on my amp, jamming out on guitar.
Eddie said a lot of nice things to me that day, and I’ll take them to my grave, but I’ll tell you this, I was touched enough to where I had to leave the room, go to the bathroom, and cry. That might make me sound like a dick, but after being told I sounded like him, that I was copying him, and all this shit, it meant a lot to hear that he liked what I did, and that he respected it."
Read more here, and watch for the complete Guitar World interview over the coming days.
White Lion released four albums before calling it quits: Fight To Survive (1985), Pride (1987), Big Game (1989) and Mane Attraction (1991). Bratta dropped out of sightin 1992, having left the music business entirely. Although he has not released any music since 1992, many musicians, both singers and guitar players, have continued to praise his songwriting skills and technical ability.