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Sammy Hagar: Eddie Van Halen recorded the Right Now solo in "pajamas and slippers"

Sammy Hagar (left) and Eddie Van Halen perform at the Target Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota on July 30, 1995
(Image credit: Jim Steinfeldt/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)

Right Now is often regarded as one of the defining songs from Sammy Hagar's decade-plus tenure as Van Halen's frontman. 

In a recent interview with Guitar Player, Hagar was asked about how the song – which was featured on the band's chart-topping 1991 album, For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge – came to be.

Always an entertaining storyteller, Hagar went in depth on the trials and tribulations of the recording sessions for the song, which Eddie Van Halen had been developing since before Hagar even joined the band. 

Hagar said that, once he finally fit lyrics to Eddie's long-gestating piano part, Right Now "came together like magic," with the guitar solo in particular coming to Eddie spontaneously.

“Usually, Eddie had solos pretty locked down before we started recording,” Hagar said, “but on this song he winged it. He came out of the house in pajamas and slippers, went into the studio and played whatever came out. And as you might expect, it was pretty damn great.”

By Hagar's recollection, Eddie took two passes at the solo, which both “sounded awesome, because as everybody knows, Eddie never played a bad solo.” The end result was a comp of the two takes.

While we have no reason to doubt the veracity of Hagar's overall story, his point that Eddie usually "had solos pretty locked down" before recording, and that Right Now was a bit of an exception to this general rule, doesn't quite stand up to scrutiny.

In a 2012 interview with Guitar World, Eddie told us – when discussing the solo to the A Different Kind of Truth track She’s the Woman – "You know me. I’m the kind of guy who likes to wing it. I don’t plan out my solos. The one solo that I had to plan out [for A Different Kind of Truth] was on She’s the Woman."

Later on in the same interview, Eddie said – in regards to his solos – "The only thing I ever really planned before was the solo in Runnin’ with the Devil. Other than that, nothing else was planned or written out in advance."

It's not the first time a former Van Halen frontman has stretched the truth when discussing the legendary guitarist and his game-changing solos. In 2019, David Lee Roth claimed – rather preposterously – that he "structured" the guitar solos on Van Halen’s debut album.

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Jackson is an Associate Editor at GuitarWorld.com. He’s been writing and editing stories about new gear, technique and guitar-driven music both old and new since 2014, and has also written extensively on the same topics for Guitar Player. Elsewhere, his album reviews and essays have appeared in Louder and Unrecorded. Though open to music of all kinds, his greatest love has always been indie, and everything that falls under its massive umbrella. To that end, you can find him on Twitter crowing about whatever great new guitar band you need to drop everything to hear right now.