The former Van Halen frontman declared his feelings for the musician – who passed away in 2020 – while in conversation in the first episode of his new The Roth Show podcast.
Reflecting on the band's earlier days and his friendship with Eddie, he says: "Boy, I miss him. I had a ball with Ed. Walt Disney once said, 'You know what? My love affair with Mickey Mouse was better than any love affair with a woman I ever had'...
"I 'gotta tell ya: playing with Ed, writing songs with Ed, presenting those songs with Ed, was better than any love affair I ever had."
He continues, "And some of those songs, I think, might last forever – or until the last syllable of time, like Shakespeare said. They became anthems. Where are they playing Jump right now?".
Admitting that he wasn't initially keen on the 1984 glam metal hit Jump, Roth adds: "I remember when he played it on the keyboard downstairs. I said, 'No!''
"Well, we reflect the times, and the times at that time was guitars, guitars, guitars; and Jump was one of those hybrids."
Also in the episode, the musician discussed the Van Halen covers that he's been dropping in recent months as a solo artist, recorded by a live band in a studio to try harness the spirit of Van Halen's original sound. For the recording process, Roth explains how he's been using equipment developed in the EDM genre, which he believes sounds "a little bit fatter".
"Being from classic rock, there's not much that I'm gonna really change in the Van Halen issues," he explains.
"We went for the sonics; we went for the sounds; we went for the mix. Let's employ some of the EDM technology, record with the original instruments...and with those same amps and pickups and microphones and stuff, what can we bring that's new?".
Listen to the full episode below: