RIP Eddie Van Halen

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The world lost Eddie Van Halen, another great musician, on October 6, 2020.

When I hear the name Eddie Van Halen, the few things that come to mind are an astounding guitar virtuoso, his band Van Halen, the songs “Eruption” and “Jump”, Back to the Future and Michael Jackson’s Beat It. I have to admit, I am not much of a Van Halen fan. But I admire Eddie Van Halen’s guitar playing style.

The very first time I heard the name Van Halen was in the film Back to the Future. This is when Marty McFly (played by Michael J. Fox) accidentally travelled back in time to 1955. Marty wanted to scare his then-teenage father, George, to listen to him. With a spacesuit on and headphones on sleeping George, Marty then put in a cassette tape labelled “Edward Van Halen” into his walkman and played it. The screaming and wailing of the guitar woke and frightened George 1.

And the guitar solo on Michael Jackson’s “Beat It”, that was Eddie Van Halen. He not only recorded it, he also re-arranged the song 2.

I have always thought of Eddie Van Halen as one of the guitar greats who popularised guitar tapping, creating those incredible harmonics. But little did I know that he is also an innovator. He built the Frankenstrat, whereby he combined the body of a Fender Stratocaster with the Gibson’s humbucking bridge pickup. You can learn more about this side of Eddie Van Halen in the video below of an interview he did on “Is Rock ‘n’ Roll All About Reinvention”.

Thank you for everything, Eddie. RIP.

More About Van Halen


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