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May, 30

Johnny Depp appears in Sheffield at Jeff Beck gig ahead of defamation trial verdict

Johnny Depp made a surprise appearance on stage with rock guitarist Jeff Beck in Sheffield on Sunday night.

Singing and playing guitar, Depp performed covers of Jimi Hendrix’s Little Wing and Marvin Gaye’s What’s Going On, plus the John Lennon song Isolation, which he and Beck recorded a studio version of in 2020.

The performance comes amid his high-profile US court case against ex-wife Amber Heard, brought by Depp, who accuses Heard of defamation after she published an article in the Washington Post that referred to herself as a victim of domestic abuse. Heard has countersued.

For seven weeks, a jury listened to allegations of abuse from both parties towards the other, and will deliberate on a verdict after reconvening on 31 May.

Depp has long dabbled in rock music, including with his supergroup Hollywood Vampires alongside Alice Cooper and Aerosmith’s Joe Perry. In 2015, they recorded with Paul McCartney, and Depp appears in the video for McCartney’s song My Valentine, also playing guitar. Footage from that performance, part of McCartney’s live set since 2013, has been screened during McCartney’s US tour amid the Depp trial, though McCartney has not commented on the case.

On releasing their version of Isolation in 2020, Beck said: “Johnny and I have been working on music together for a while now and we recorded this track during our time in the studio last year … you’ll be hearing more from Johnny and me in a little while”. There have been no further releases since Isolation, however.

Photo: provided by The Guardian
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