The third single from Michael Jackson’s sixth solo album, Thriller, “Beat It” received the Grammy Awards for Record of the Year and Best Male Rock Vocal Performance, as well as two American Music Awards. It was inducted into the Music Video Producers Hall of Fame.
Eddie Van Halen, lead guitarist of Van Halen, was asked to add a guitar solo. When initially contacted by Jones, Van Halen thought he was receiving a prank call. Having established that the call was genuine, Van Halen recorded his guitar solo free of any charge. “I did it as a favor”, the musician later said. “I was a complete fool, according to the rest of the band, our manager and everyone else. I was not used. I knew what I was doing – I don’t do something unless I want to do it.”