Country Throwback: Watch Van Halen’s Little-Known Cameo in This Hank Williams Jr. Music Video

by Jennifer Shea
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Most people probably don’t know that Eddie Van Halen was into country music.

The famous rock guitarist made a cameo in a 1986 Hank Williams Jr. music video, along with the rest of Van Halen. In the video, “My Name is Bocephus,” the members of the band hang out in the background of a bar, wearing sunglasses and fake beards.

According to a Facebook post earlier this year by Van Halen lead singer Sammy Hagar, they all had a good time on the set.

“It was a cool tune and a crazy scene,” Hagar reminisced. “Alex had just shaved his head, me and Mikey were shooting it like a cue ball – we all had a blast!”

As Taste of Country explains, Van Halen liked to party hard around the time that Hagar first joined the band. And they called that partying “Bocephus mode” in a nod to Williams, whose parties were the stuff of legend.

When Williams heard about Van Halen’s “Bocephus” homage, he was tickled. And so he invited them to join his music video.

Williams became known for his trademark look: a beard and sunglasses. He began wearing them to cover the scars left over from a mountain climbing accident in 1975. In the video, Van Halen can be seen imitating Williams’s look. Williams was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame this August.

Eddie Van Halen died this week at age 65 after a long battle with throat cancer. He had survived an earlier bout of tongue cancer. Van Halen released 12 studio albums and received three Grammy Award nominations over the years, winning once, in 1995.

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