Regarding the Prince solo at the end of “While My Guitar…” at the posthumous induction of George Harrison at the Rock n Roll Hall of Fame, in a New York Times article from April 28, 2016, Craig Inciardi (Curator at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Museum) says “I’ve seen every induction performance from ’92 to the present, so that’s like 24 shows. On a purely musical level, a technical level as far as musicianship, that performance seems like the most impressive one.”
During the rehearsals the night before, Jeff Lynne’s guitar player, who was also playing the song, essentially takes the lead ahead of Prince at every opportunity, but places it straight, note for note, as George had done it. Prince says nothing and just plays rhythm, so no one really gets to hear what’s he’s going to do. He later comments to the producer not to worry, during the actual performance, he just says nonchalantly, I’ll step in at the end. So basically no rehearsal.
Tom Ferrone, drummer for Tom Petty, says just before the actual performance: “Tom sort of went over to him (Prince) and said, “Just cut loose and don’t feel sort of inhibited to copy anything that we have, just play your thing, just have a good time.”
It was a hell of a guitar solo, and a hell of a show he actually put on for the band. When he fell back into the audience, everybody in the band freaked out, like, “Oh my God, he’s falling off the stage!” And then that whole thing with the guitar going up in the air. I didn’t even see who caught it. I just saw it go up, and I was astonished that it didn’t come back down again. Everybody wonders where that guitar went, and I gotta tell you, I was on the stage, and I wonder where it went, too.”