A little over a week ago, the hard rock world received the devastating news of Eddie Van Halen's passing...
It's extremely difficult when we find out someone we percieved as "immortal" , has infact crossed over to the other side, taken from all of us by a horrible disease... Cancer.
The big bad C... Eddie Van Halen, after fighting for so long, has lost this battle.
He was 65 years old.
What is more incredible is how, the loss of such a legend has reunited everyone in greif.
So many people usually fighting each other over politics, religion, race, ect... suddenly came together to cry for their hero.
I could go on and invite you on a journey down memory lane, go throught the whole biography of Eddie Van Halen, and the whole discography of Van Halen, but I much rather simply pay my respect to the artist, the guitar God, the man behind the star.
A few celebrities have paid their respects to Eddie Van Halen, and by doing so, shed a light on the other side of Eddie Van Halen, the "private"side, sharing about their friendship, their experiences and what it was like to meet and get to know him.
Nuno Bettencourt, guitarist of Extreme is one of them, and probably the one who's way of sharing his pain, of explaining what Eddie Van Halen has brought to him, particularly resonated to me... his words resonated to me because he spoke of a connection between the artist and the fan, and that's what it is all about in music...
Here's a few segments of what he has written.
"As a kid who’s life was forever altered when the needle dropped on the fade in of Running With The Devil.
I dreamed that one day I could earn my own stripes.
But those stripes are only and forever Edward’s.
Today, 40 years later, I can only mourn those stripes."
"Even as a God, he always made you feel important."
"It’s incredible how as a young player, your guitar chord, is the umbilical chord that initmately connects you to someone you may never meet, moreso than even someone in your own family.
At the drop of a needle or the touch of a space bar. They are there for you 24/7.
As Eddie was... and forever will be.
Thank you for shaping who I am today.
Love you, Edward.
You are the ONE."
Another person close to Eddie Van Halen , is Gary Cherone, singer of Extreme and ex singer of Van Halen, who released the VH3 album with the band in 1998. In a recent interview, he revealed how Eddie Van Halen made him feel welcome straight away.
Here's a link to the interview with rolling stones magazine:
I strongly advise you read it.
On his Twitter account, Gary Cherone simply wrote
"Whether you were blessed to have known him or not, He was a kind and gentle soul... His impact on ALL our lives was immeasurable! His music, eternal! My deepest sympathies to the Van Halen family... Love you Ed #LongLiveTheKing!"
Gene Simmons was also amongst those who shared their thoughts,
Here's what he said during an interview.
"Eddie was aware that he had this God-given talent, but I never saw him push that in anybody's face. At the core, Eddie just seems to be a happy guy. Every once in a while, God gets it right. He did a good job with Eddie Van Halen, I'll tell you that. He was a far better man than I'll ever be, that's the truth."
Everyone who has been blessed to know Eddie has painted the portrait of a genius, humble with a heart of gold.
And that's who Eddie Van Halen was.
We have lost yet another of our heroes but, his legacy will remain.
Music NEVER dies.
REST IN PEACE MR. VAN HALEN