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Looking through Twitter and Instagram this afternoon, seems there was one thing most of the world still all agreed on, and that was Eddie Van Halen. It’s hard not getting choked up seeing how many different kinds of musicians and just people loved the guy. 

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Felt the need to scribble this off last night: *** In 1979, I was at a very impressionable stage of my life. I was 12, and my family had moved to a home a couple blocks away from Fiddler’s,

EVH is blasting loud in the shop tonight.    My brother never knew how often I would sneak in and play a bootlegged Van Halen tape that he had gotten ahold of, once I figured out how to work his

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I first saw Van Halen perform for the 1st time in my hometown on November 22, 1978.

They opened for Black Sabbath.

I already had been listening to the 1st album for a few months before this concert.

Nothing had prepared me for the amazing energy that Eddie and the rest of the band had on stage.

Up until THIS concert I'd NEVER EVER seen ANY guitar player jump and run onstage the entire set while play mind boggling leads.

When Eddie performed Eruption, I though there had to be some type of guitar magic going on.

I was also lucky enough that night to be about 2-3 rows back in the middle of the stage.

I was able to snag one of his guitar pics that he flung out that night.

I've had it put away and will hold on to it for the rest of my life.

Eventually it'll be handed down to my guitar playing son, who hopefully will hand it down to his (guitar playing son (hoping).

Here's a pic of Eddie's pick:

RIP EDDIE !!!!

 

24920025387_0ec5a10002_b.jpg

 

Edited by Texsunburst59
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I‘m shocked. In recent weeks I had been listening to Van Halen DLR phase up and down. It‘s if I had an idea...

That is really terrible news. He might join Jimmy in guitar heaven for a jam now.

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I'll refer you all to my avatar.

I was the same age as the kids in the Hot For Teacher video when it came out, and it blasted me like a atomic bomb. Changed my world. I wanted to be that kid version of Eddie.  

This is big one for me. I don't think I'm even comprehending it yet.

Speechless. 

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This is very, very sad news!

Back in the late 70's, when Punk and New Wave rarely served guitar gourmet dishes, there were two guitar players that gave me hope: Eddie and Mark Knopfler. Guitarland has been robbed of one of it's brightest knights. Rest in peace, Eddie and rock on in that heavenly all-star-band!

 

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Just heard this morning while having my first cup. Everybody has pretty much covered everything there is to say, but I’ll still add my 2c...

I bought the first album when it first came out, on 8-track. Andy (the guy who owned Stardrive Records in the Dodge City mall), had just gotten it in and had it on the turntable, cranked. I was like ‘WTF’? Anyway, I literally wore that 8-track out cruising around in my 63 Impala. Great memories.

IMO he did more for guitar than JH, although we wouldn’t have had EVH without Jimi, so there you go. I knew he had been in bad shape for quite a while, and this shouldn’t come as a shock, but it still hits hard. Fuck.

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6 hours ago, gorch said:

I‘m shocked. In recent weeks I had been listening to Van Halen DLR phase up and down. It‘s if I had an idea...

That is really terrible news. He might join Jimmy in guitar heaven for a jam now.

My side, I had started to fantasize about a new collaboration EVH/Brian May, given Brian had mentioned Van Halen when he received the award from Total Guitar. Now it won’t happen. 😞

And yes, Eddie was an innovator and a fabulous musician, plus one of the three most influential rock guitarists of all times —the other two are Hendrix and Malmsteen. A great one is gone and it’s certainly sad news. 😞

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Felt the need to scribble this off last night:

***

In 1979, I was at a very impressionable stage of my life. I was 12, and my family had moved to a home a couple blocks away from Fiddler’s, a music store on Detroit’s far northeast side. I was starting to broaden my rock appreciation horizons beyond the Beatles and Kiss, and in September of that year, I successfully convinced my dad to buy me a guitar. It was a nylon-string Yamaha classical, which made my Spanish mother very happy. Me, not so much. I wanted an electric. Dad said I could have one if I took lessons and stuck with it for a year.

So, I signed up at Fiddler’s. My first teacher was a man named Tom Neme, who was a member of the Bob Seger System in the ’60s. He taught me songs that were appropriate for the instrument I had, songs like Seger’s “Beautiful Loser” and “Sandman” by America. But I was more intrigued by what I heard coming out of the other lesson rooms: Ted Nugent, AC/DC, and an intoxicating riff I first heard on a TV commercial for the Detroit rock radio station WABX.

It was the riff from “Outta Love Again” by Van Halen.

Their second album was my first introduction to the band; their self-titled debut had eluded me somehow. But I was changed forever by the combination of that WABX commercial, hearing Van Halen songs incessantly at Fiddler’s, and a deep dive into Van Halen II on cassette while hanging out with a friend on the roof of his family’s garage (to this day I have no idea why we were up there with a boom box). I was alive when Jimi Hendrix dropped “Are You Experienced” on Earth from another planet, but much too young to be aware of his influence. Except for having to backtrack to Van Halen I a year after its release, I was on board for Eddie Van Halen’s entire trajectory in real time. His playing spoke for itself, but the man exuded energy, excitement, swagger, and absolute reckless abandon. Those are the things I always admired most about him.

Buying “Fair Warning” the day it came out on vinyl and hearing the faint pops and crackles as the intro to “Mean Street” faded in is something I remember like it was yesterday. I also remember buying the “Star Licks: In the Style of Van Halen” instructional kit and trying to learn the solo to “Push Comes to Shove” (yes, I stuck with my lessons and eventually got that electric guitar). It wasn’t long before I realized that even if I achieved the impossible and learned all the notes, I would never cop the style and feel. So, for better or worse, at that moment I knew I had to do my own thing on the guitar, if for no other reason than it was easier. Yes, Eddie Van Halen convinced me to be myself as a musician. He gave me the kind of inspiration that’s unattainable but still fuels you. What a gift from someone who was so much larger than life.

Never was he more so than the summer night in July 1982 when I saw my first concert, Van Halen at Cobo Arena on the Diver Down tour. The house lights going off, then two spotlights shining on Eddie as he tapped the intro to “Romeo Delight” is a moment I’ll never forget. I still get chills thinking about it. Anyone in that venue who didn’t want to be a rock star at that moment was either too stoned or too oblivious to understand.

Beginning in earnest around 1988, I made my own run at becoming a famous rock guitarist. Much like my attempt at the “Push Comes to Shove” solo, I came up short. Maybe in both cases I quit before reaching the ultimate goal. But for a brief period in my own life, I experienced a sampling of the aforementioned energy, excitement, swagger, and abandon that Eddie embodied. Things he inspired me to go after in life. Again, what a gift.

Of course, the best gift of all came during the apex of my music career in the ’90s. A bunch of rock stars, Eddie Van Halen among them, were in Chicago for a Jason Becker benefit concert at the Aragon Ballroom. There was a party for them the night before at the Hard Rock Cafe, which was my “day job” at the time. Toward the end of the night, as Eddie was leaving, I got the opportunity to meet him in one of the back offices. Me, the manager on duty, and him. It was surreal, and I misted up in his presence. I had a copy of my band’s CD with me and I gave it to him, saying something along the lines of “you can listen to it or set your drink on it, I don’t care. I just want to say thanks for everything you’ve given me.” He flashed his trademark grin and said, “I think I’ll listen to it.” And then, Eddie Van Halen left the building.

On October 6, 2020, he left the building again, this time for good. Oddly, I’m less emotional than I was on the days Stevie Ray Vaughan, Prince, and even George Michael died. I don’t know why, as Eddie Van Halen had a much more significant impact on me than all of those others combined. I guess I’m just stunned, like I was when I heard him play “Outta Love Again” and watched him play “Romeo Delight.” Or it could be that there was never any sadness in his music, only joy. All I know is, I’ve lost two people to cancer this year. One was a best friend since high school, the other was a man I only met once. But they both gave me so much more than I could ever give back in a million lifetimes.

What a gift.

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3 hours ago, zorrow said:

Malmsteen

???

What is the influence of Malmsteen, please?

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3 hours ago, zorrow said:

My side, I had started to fantasize about a new collaboration EVH/Brian May, given Brian had mentioned Van Halen when he received the award from Total Guitar.

That was a really nice fantasy actually. B)
Another StarFleet so to say.

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This is kind of long but here’s a cool interview with Craig gass. (The comedian who did dead on Gene Simmons impressions on Stern back in the day).    Really cool story about when he lived with Eddie.    
 

 

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From Warren Haynes:

Screen Shot 2020-10-07 at 12.53.06 PM.png

RIP Eddie Van Halen

There are a handful of people with any musical instrument that we can credit with actually changing the course of the instrument. Obviously Charlie Parker changed the alto saxophone. Coltrane changed the tenor saxophone. Jaco Pastorius changed the electric bass. John Bonham changed the world of rock drumming. I could go on but you get the point. It’s an amazing feat for any artist to have that kind of impact and influence on any instrument…..But let’s talk about the electric guitar. The advent of the electric guitar changed music, arguably, more than the the advent of any other instrument. The endless combinations of sounds and techniques allowed everyone to seek their own voice which opened up a whole new world of musical expression and possibilities. Maybe I’m biased but in my opinion the electric guitar saved modern music. So when we’re talking about a small pantheon of people who changed the electric guitar that’s a major feat. Monumental!

I still remember the first time I heard Van Halen. It was at a party in Asheville, my hometown. The first VH album had just come out and people were raving about the music and about Eddie’s guitar playing in particular. Never ready to add someone new to my list of who I consider to be great guitarists, I was a bit resistant but ready to give it a chance. At first listen, I can admit now, I was quite impressed but still not ready to give in to the hype. It was obvious that what he was doing was exceptional but he was using a lot of distortion so I wasn’t convinced that he was really pulling it off in a technical sense…. until I heard Eruption. Pretty damn precise! That’s when it hit me. It was a new day in Rock ’n’ Roll. It was a new day in electric guitar playing. Then later when I heard Spanish Fly (from VH2) GOD DAMN!!! He can play that shit on acoustic guitar.

Fast forward. No matter what your tastes, especially if you’re of a certain age, maybe VH’s music was not your thing but you had to admit it was the real deal! I personally never looked at EVH as being a major influence on my own playing as my style was fairly developed by the time I discovered his music but I was always a big fan of his virtuosity. Also I should point out that, as is the case with the emergence of any highly innovative, groundbreaking new music or new musician, it would soon follow that the airwaves would become inundated with a gazillion copycats, most of which paled in comparison to the trendsetter. This has happened in virtually every moment in history where someone changed the course of a genre or where someone changed the course of an instrument. It has also happened historically with songwriting. When someone comes along with a fresh innovative approach to writing songs suddenly copycats appear out of the woodwork. That’s the way it was with Van Halen, both with Eddie’s playing and with the music itself. This inundation left a bad taste in the mouths of a lot of avid music fans, myself included, but again Eddie was the catharsis for change- not to be blamed for what followed- and VH was the real deal.

I only got to see Van Halen, the band, perform twice- once in the early 80’s in Asheville and once a few years ago when they reformed the original band. All four members of Gov’t Mule happened to be in LA at the time and we were invited to the Forum to see what they called a “friends and family” dress rehearsal show. Being there watching Van Halen in a 20,000 seat arena with only 700 lucky attendees was quite an experience. Eddie played brilliantly. The whole band sounded great, as they did when I first saw them several decades earlier. It was something I'll always remember.

I never knew Eddie- never had the opportunity to meet him- but as someone who has studied music since I first got the “bug” as a kid I am compelled to say that the loss of Eddie Van Halen today is monumental! The list of those who changed the trajectory of the electric guitar is a short one and many arguments can be made that I am leaving some out (which I don’t doubt) but in that regard Eddie is joined by the likes of Charlie Christian, Les Paul, and Jimi Hendrix and very few others. Eddie changed the electric guitar. Eddie changed Rock ’n’ Roll. Rock ’n’ Roll changed the world. Any questions?- WH

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I've been thinking of EVH on and off throughout the past day. I got Van Halen I on vinyl when it came out and played it multiple times a day for months! EVH had my attention in a big way as a guitar player and a listener! I was always a big fan of the band and of EVH's playing. When I first posted here yesterday, I didn't really know what to say aside from crap, what is a world without EVH? So I've since thought mostly about the things his playing brought to the table, and the effect he's had on music.

...but how did it affect me?

I really always enjoyed his lead playing, his leads were always fun and exciting! Did it affect or influence my playing? Honestly, not really. Yeah, I played in a few bands and we covered VH and I learned his leads, and damn, they were fun to play! But I never really incorporated his lead playing style into my playing. How did EVH influence me? @Jakeboy touched on it. His rhythm playing was head and shoulders above anything I'd ever heard in my life. His rhythm playing changed my guitar playing and my concept of what rhythm guitar was forever. His rhythm playing influenced me as a guitarist and changed my playing forever. His rhythm influence made me a better player, and gifted me with a level of fun and creativity in rhythm playing I'd never experienced before. For that I am forever grateful.

Edited by gtrdaddy
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As far as our era is concerned, in terms of rock guitar, Eddie was the MAN! When he first appeared on the scene no one sounded like him. A few yrs later, everyone did, or at least tried to... 

R.I.P. :(

Edited by hamerican gigolo
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I’m still reeling from this news. I didn’t know what to say yesterday, and I don’t really know what to say now. Never before has the passing of a stranger, someone I’ve never met, a “celebrity” had an affect on me to this degree, if at all.  Like many of you, I have my Van Halen stories, my inspirations and my good memories. 

I apologize in advance if I ramble, but you guys on this board have been a huge part of my life as well and I feel like you may be the group of people that “get it” when most in my personal life will not.

I was too young to remember Van Halen hitting the scene in the beginning, having been born in ‘78 when VH1 was released. But, having an older brother who liked rock and borrowing/stealing his cassettes and mix tapes got me into it. I have so many memories of listening to Van Halen’s music as a kid. 

The first album I ever spent my own money on was Van Halen F.U.C.K.

My first concert was Van Halen on the Balance tour, saw them twice that year in Chicago with my brother

I vividly remember the guitar magazine cover with Eddie on it after he cut his hair, frosted the tops and grew a goatee...  No clue why that one particular cover jumps out, but it was the one of many I can picture instantly in my mind right now  

I have one of Eddie’s guitar picks from the infamous reunion tour with Sammy Hagar in 2004. Caught them on the second night in St Louis and despite everyone saying Ed was awful the first night from drinking, I thought the show was fantastic. Saw them in 2012 with Roth and Wolfie on the next reunion tour at the United Center in Chicago (again with my brother - 3 out of 4 shows with him)

I still have the block letter 5150 half stack that my dad bought for me when I was 14 (28 years ago).  Just recently got it serviced after spending a few years on storage. Still sounds brutal. I didn’t get along with the Peavey USA Wolfgang I had 15-ish years ago, neck was too small for me...  Still have my EVH Phase 90 on my pedal board. 

I could keep going but the thing that still hits me the hardest was seeing Wolfgang’s post yesterday.  He had the best dad he could ask for and so did I.  It’ll be 3 years next month that I lost my dad at 70, also too young.  I can still feel what it was like standing at the visitation and for 4 hours straight, with no reprieve, the crowd that came to pay their respects lined up out the door and down the street.  Since then, i wished for myself (selfishly) to be able to make a difference in that many people’s lives. My son was only 9 months old when my dad passed so he’ll never get to know how great of a man he was.  

Thinking that Wolfgang will never be able to have his dad meet his spouse, child/children, etc just breaks my heart.  I know what it’s like to lose a parent and I don’t wish it on anyone.  Seeing the impact that Eddie had on so many people’s lives just brings up my own feelings and Wolfie is right, it’s a loss you don’t fully recover from.  
 

Thank you for all of the music you made, Eddie.  You made the world a better place for it. And thank you all here on this board for giving me a place to be me.

 

 

Edited by Travis
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King Edward!!! 2020 the worst yr ever.....

This is a nice story ...

A Message from VINNIE VINCENT I want to share my thoughts and feelings about the very sad and devastating loss of Eddie Van Halen. I know I am not on social media. It is not my platform and I'm not comfortable there so I am directing my thoughts to the members of Legion and Euphoria only. I crossed paths with Ed back in late 1980. I received a call from the owner of a recording studio in Pasadena where I had been rehearsing and recording who asked if i would be so kind to do a favor for someone rehearsing at his studio. The owner said that a guitar player and his brother were using the studio to try it out and wanted me to bring down my 1959 Les Paul sunburst and a few other of my vintage guitars. I was happy to oblige, The owner said it was Ed Van Halen and his brother Alex Van Halen guitar player and the drummer. And I remember saying I knew of Ed and his gaining reputation with his band. Keep in mind this is 1980 and I just moved to California a year earlier so I was relatively new and still finding my way around and hearing of all these new bands and Van Halen was one of the new bands. Interestingly, New Wave was the rage at that time in LA WITH BANDS LIKE THE KNACK. So that night I brought my Vintage guitars to the studio. it was just Ed, Alex and the studio owner. I was asked stay and make myself comfortable. Ed and Alex were in the studio playing just the two of them and it was an amazing Sterling Jam, Very exciting and Ed was on top of his game. They took a break and we said hello and Ed invited me into the studio. I took my guitars In and Ed began to to play each of my guitars to see how they sounded.. Funny enough it was one of those strange moments in time where reality actually beat fantasy in a race to the finish line but my 59 Les Paul which was so coveted amongst collector's and musicians and was the guitar Ed specifically wanted to try could not compete with the sound Ed got from his Charvel Strat.. one pickup Maple neck Strat body 1 knob. It was the moment that changed my life forever. So Ed played my 59 sunburst les paul...for a few minutes and gave it back to me and then picked up his own Charvel Strat again and plugged through his amp. It sounded amazing and i asked if i could try it....Ed took the guitar off, handed it to me and said sure...give it go.. It played like hot butter on warm bread and sounded amazing in my hands. I played for a few minutes and handed the guitar back to Ed and I said thank you so much.. That was the turning point in my guitar life because it was that fateful and fortuitous moment which fate led to KISS and to my long relationship with Jackson guitars during the 1980's. I thanked Ed for his hospitality ..and he said i was welcome to stay so I did and we hung out for the night at the studio until Ed and Alex were done. Ed and I walked out to the parking lot together and he helped me get my guitars into my car...and then said to me...hey Vinnie..come here!...as he got into his car... I walked over and Ed handed me a gift, and said..."thanks for bringing the guitars down" I thanked him back and we both waved at each other and drove away. I STILL HAVE HIS GIFT..TO THIS DAY. 40 YEARS LATER. Its a memory made of pure gold that i will never forget. Ed's passing hit me very hard. I was numb and felt disoriented as to the reality of what had happened. His passing will take a long time to heal. But thru Ed's gift, his music and all the lives he touched, I believe Ed will live in all of us forever, thru generations to come. I'm sending my love, respect and deepest condolences to Ed's family and loved ones. VINNIE VINCENT

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Our own ZENs Seymour Duncan vid for their EVH styled pup, this is excellent;

 

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3 hours ago, Brooks said:

Our own ZENs Seymour Duncan vid for their EVH styled pup, this is excellent;

 

I've always loved this demo, as per usual, the playing is spot on.  

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