Wednesday, October 7, 2020

Eddie Van Halen

Here we go again.


My hero Bob Gibson just passed. Prince, David Bowie, Glen Frey, Tom Petty, Luther Vandross,  Eddie Money, Maurice White, and too many more. And now Eddie Van Halen. 

It seems like it's relentless.

I was a deejay on WKTK in Baltimore when I first played them. Van Halen's first album...You Really Got Me, Jamie's Crying, Aint Talkin' About Love. I played them all. I missed Ice Cream Man. That mix was new to me, Heavy Metal Thunder on catchy pop tunes. 

As I moved on to other markets they came with me. I'd never heard that kind of guitar playing before and that's the point. A front man for the ages in David Lee Roth and Eddie's band on what seemed like every radio.

I first saw Van Halen in concert in Detroit. I mention that because I first found out about him on Facebook. A dear friend of mine, Mike Skill of The Romantics (from Detroit), had a post about Eddie's passing.

Van Halen is all over my iTunes, Eddie is all over my iTunes.

Legend has it that the instrumental only for Jump was played at a boardroom meeting of their record executives and they gave it a standing ovation. That's Eddie on keyboards as well as guitar. He, they, were always one of my go tos. Am I wrong saying his name with the great guitar players? Don't think so.

Okay, some history I'll bet you know...David Lee left Van Halen and their new lead singer was Sammy Hagar. I was on the radio in New York, WNEW-FM, when I heard his very first single with them, Why Can't This Be Love? I was impressed with it and said, on the air, it would go Top 5 on the charts. It went to #3 on the Billboard Hot 100. 

And don't get me going on Dreams. Great song.

Later I flew from Los Angeles to New York sitting next to Eddie. We talked the whole way. A sweet, nice, guy we had a grand old time. Not once was he like, do you know who I am? And yes, I knew exactly who he was.

Eddie Van Halen had more talent in his pinkie than most people have in their whole families. He was one of the great ones. Is there a guitar player out there who sounds like him? 

The last time I saw Van Halen in concert, here in Orlando, David Lee Roth was back in the band and Eddie's son, Wolfgang, was on the bass. Along with his brother, Alex, on drums it was David Lee with the Van Halens.

Suffice to say they tore the place up.

I'm getting weary of saying Rest In Peace. But.

Rest In Peace Eddie Van Halen.




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