Ahead of verdict in trial with Heard, Johnny Depp straps on a guitar with Jeff Beck

A man in a suit and sunglasses waves
Johnny Depp, seen in 2020, joined fellow musician Jeff Beck onstage over the weekend.
(Associated Press)

Former “Pirates of the Caribbean” star Johnny Depp has been locked in a protracted defamation trial with his ex-wife Amber Heard for the last several weeks.But it doesn’t mean he doesn’t have time for his other love, music.

Depp made a surprise appearance on stage with guitarist Jeff Beck not once but twice over the Memorial Day weekend while waiting for the verdict in his trial with Heard.

For the record:

5:36 p.m. May 31, 2022A previous version of this story attributed the song “E-Pro” to Jeff Beck. Beck Hansen, who performs under the name Beck, performed the song, which appears on his 2005 album, “Guero.”

Depp has dabbled in music primarily as a guitarist over the years — including in the supergroup rock band Hollywood Vampires, alongside Alice Cooper and Joe Perry of Aerosmith. Depp joined Beck onstage in the United Kingdom at the Sheffield City Hall on Sunday and made another surprise cameo Monday night at the Royal Albert Hall in London.


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Introducing his unbilled guest, Beck told the audience how the two met, according to video footage a fan posted to Twitter.

“He came knocking on my dressing room door about five years ago, and we haven’t stopped laughing since,” Beck said. “Kept it quiet, because [of] obvious reasons. Here he is, my good mate.”

Depp then walked onstage with his acoustic guitar as fans waved and cheered for the “Alice in Wonderland” actor.

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The BBC reported that, among other songs, the duo performed their rendition of John Lennon’s “Isolation,” which they recorded and released in 2020 with Beck on guitar and Depp on vocals and guitar.

“Jeff Beck and I recorded this song Isolation last year, as our take on a beautiful John Lennon tune. Lennon’s poetry – ‘We’re afraid of everyone. Afraid of the Sun!’ — seemed to Jeff and me especially profound right now, this song about isolation, fear, and existential risks to our world,” Depp said back then in a press release on Beck’s website.

Beck also hinted at future collaborations with Depp.

In his rebuttal on the witness stand Wednesday, Johnny Depp called ex-wife Amber Heard’s abuse allegations ‘humiliating ... and all false.’

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“You’ll be hearing more from Johnny and me in a little while but until then we hope you find some comfort and solidarity in our take on this Lennon classic,” Beck said in the same 2020 press release.


Depp has been spending the last six weeks in court fighting a $50-million defamation case against Heard after she wrote an op-ed in 2018 for the Washington Post where she referred to herself as “a public figure representing domestic abuse.” The “Aquaman” actor filed a $100-million countersuit against Depp, arguing it’s her right to tell her side of the story.

Closing arguments in the trial wrapped up Friday, and a verdict could come sometime this week.