Eddie Van Halen, the pioneering guitarist behind the hard-rock band Van Halen passed away from throat cancer at the age of 65.
Musicians and music listeners around the world are playing his timeless music and videos during this Rocktober. You can bet there are millions of people blowing the dust off their Van Halen albums, Singles, Tape Cassettes, CDs, MP3s, and not to mention running the batteries out of phones and Bluetooth speakers around the world.
Born Edward Lodewijk Van Halen in Amsterdam, the guitarist was raised by a Dutch father and Indonesian mother. In 1962, when he was 7 years old, the family moved to America. Eddie Van Halen’s father, Jan, was a classically trained clarinet and saxophone player, “and passed his obsession onto his sons.”
Eddie and his brother Alex Van Halen formed their own band in Pasadena, California in 1972, finding bassist Michael Anthony and vocalist David Lee Roth. Using a notable name of Van Halen, the quartet gained recognition in the Los Angeles area during the mid 70s, and released its self-titled 1978 debut album, “Van Halen.”
The debut album sold 10 million copies, and included singles like Runnin’ with the Devil, You Really Got Me and Jamie’s Cryin.’ The band’s next five albums all went multi-platinum, with the pinnacle tune in 1984 with the band’s lone number one single, Jump.
We’ll miss you Eddie Van Halen, and thank you for everything you made for the rest of us to enjoy, forever.