Impossible to overstate the loss today of Eddie Van Halen. A day we hoped would never come. It was so hard to know what was really going on with EVH the last few years. So many conflicting messages. Sadly turns out he was as sick as was rumored. I learned of the news while live on air doing my SiriusXM show and stayed on an extra hour till 5P ET on 106. I will once again stay on an extra hour live tomorrow 2-5P ET on Volume. Many guests will no doubt join. Sebastian Bach and Mike McCready have already said they will call in. Many fan calls as well. It’s been a hell of a day to say the least. Incredibly tragic. I only interviewed Eddie once and met him once. But I will always know I grew up with VH and saw many shows, so I will cherish that for sure. Join me on the radio this week as we celebrate him with you the fans. Eddie Van Halen was needless to say a guitar icon, but also a brilliant songwriter, musician and innovator of music. I’m grateful to be able to say I saw his magic on stage many times and his music has been a part of every one of my radio shows since I started back in 1983. I got the first Van Halen album when it first came out and I’ll never forget the impact it had on me. RIP Eddie and condolences to his fans, friends and family.

PS: The VH Trunk Top 20 is replaying now till Mid on 106 Volume. More soon.

25 Responses

  1. Ed smoked.
    Frank Zappa smoked.
    Neil Peart smoked.
    Lemmy smoked.
    Dio smoked.
    Frankie Banali smoked.

    Everyone I know that has ever had cancer has smoked. No exceptions. My friend started chemo last month. He’s been smoking since the late 70s. How many people do you know first-hand that have had cancer had never smoked?

    1. Raymond,

      I will NEVER defend smoking, and there is no question if you smoke (cigarettes, cigars, pipes, marijuana) drink, or abuse substances, your chances of getting cancer, cardiovascular disease, pancreatitis, cirrhosis, etc. goes up exponentially, especially with smoking.

      But, my grandpa smoked and died of cancer, my great uncle (his brother) smoked a pipe and died of cancer, but my great Aunt (their sister) smoked, died at age 92, after quitting cigarettes in her 80s and only had a touch of emphysema, never got cancer, nor had heart issues. Additionally, a friend of my mother’s, her niece’s husband’s grandfather, smoked cigars and drank whiskey everyday since his teens, never had a health problem in his life and died of natural causes at 92.

      I am sure those tend to be the exceptions, as opposed to the rule, but it does happen. As I stated below, it is a combination of genetics, life-style and LUCK.

      That being said, I do not like cigarettes, and cancer is a horrible disease which should be eradicated from the earth. I keep hoping some brilliant geneticists would find a way to help our bodies kill off the cells without taking horrible treatments and damaging healthy tissue and cells. If we can send people to space, we should be able to find the cure cancer.

    2. I know quite a few people who have developed and died from cancer who never smoked anything in their life, including my cousin, who was only in her mid 40’s. My grandmother smoked (on average) 2 packs of cigarettes a day since she was a teenager, she lived to 88. My parents weren’t that fortunate, my mother was only 57, and my father was only 62 when they passed away from cancer.
      You just never know. As far as drinking goes, I think it depends on what you drink, and how much you drink. Fact is red wine can be very beneficial to one’s health, as long as it isn’t abused, and believe it or not, same goes for beer! Many experts actually believe beer is good for your health, especially your heart, again though, in moderation. 1 day you hear coffee can be very good for you, and then all of a sudden, it’s not. I mean hell, even certain foods have been known to cause cancer, what are we going to do? What are we supposed to do? Stop eating? Not me! As a matter of fact, I’m about to have a Jimmy Dean meat lover’s breakfast bowl with 23g of protein! Delicious! 😉 Everything we do in life is a gamble, but you have to live, that’s what life is for.

  2. So tired of all the talk about the “first 4 albums,” like “Diver Down” and “1984” don’t even exist, and what about the Van Hagar era?? Of course those first 4 albums are great, they have that raw, powerful sound to them, and even though DD has a different sound and vibe to it, and not as heavy as the first 4, there’s still some really great stuff on that album! As there is on 1984!! Oh my God, 2 songs have keyboards, so f–king what!! How many bands WEREN’T using keyboards (even minimally) in 1984?? Give me a break already. Fact is “Jump” and “I’ll Wait” are GREAT songs!! 2 of my faves actually! And yes, EVH changed things up big time starting with “5150,” but what didn’t change is the creative greatness that was, is, and will always be of Eddie Van Halen!

    1. the first SIX albums was the *REAL* Van Halen. The album 1984 was good but the cracks were showing. I just never got into the Sammy Hagar-era VH. I listened to it once or twice and tried giving it a chance but it just wasn’t my cup of tea at all. The DLR-era VH destroys the Sammy-era VH. And I’ll bet that 90% would agree.

    2. It’s not a competition, most of the “Sammy-era” was all either written, or directed by the maestro, the king – Eddie Van Halen. I will agree, “5150” and “OU812” were radically different musically than what we were used to from VH, but that doesn’t mean it still wasn’t great. If I had to choose, I too would listen to the first 6 VH albums over all the others, but that doesn’t mean I don’t love all of Van Halen’s music, and I wouldn’t say Roth’s era “destroys” Hagar’s era at all. You can’t blame Sammy for the changes in VH, remember, Eddie was always the captain of the Van Halen ship. And not for anything, let’s look at the difference in sound between “Eat ‘Em And Smile,” and “Skyscraper,” Roth himself went from hard rock to power pop! It was the 80’s, everybody was “experimenting,” remember JP’s “Turbo?” (Ducking) Sorry, Dana! 😉 And look at Def Leppard, I love “Hysteria,” albeit a very different sound and vibe from the first 3 albums. We can go on and on…

    3. – 1 more example, even a band as heavy as Iron Maiden, remember “Somewhere In Time?” Synthesizers? Different sound for Maiden, but still a great album! And not for anything, I don’t recall Maiden recieving any backlash for their “experiment,” and if they did, it was very little.

  3. I know this is an old topic by now, and I haven’t posted here in a long time, but I’m catching up on a bunch of stuff and felt compelled to respond.

    With regard to cancer – no matter what it sucks. While smoking certainly has to increase the risk, sadly there’s no guarantees. My wife was diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer earlier this year and she’s never smoked a day in her life. She has not been exposed to second hand smoke beyond marginal levels during her life either, doesn’t drink, she’s about as vice-free as you can get. This came out of nowhere and was an unbelievable shock to us, like… really? Lung cancer? Hers is a genetic mutation that isn’t hereditary, and you have higher odds of winning the lottery AND getting struck by lightning than getting the specific cancer she has (her oncologist said she’s one of perhaps 10 in the world). Anyway, point is it happens to people no matter how clean and healthy you try to live. Not fair but it’s real. 2020 just keeps on being 2020.

    And losing EVH – unquestionably one of the “Mount Rushmore” of guitarists (Mount Rockmore?). The DLR vs Sammy argument has been happening since they announced Sammy joining the band, I guess some people can’t let it go, but I get it especially if you were a die hard fan when Dave left. I was too young to get on the VH train when they first hit the scene and 1984 was my first VH album (I was 10 – my mom didn’t like the album cover). I already liked Sammy when DLR split, so I was fine with Van Hagar. Different band, obviously more towards “pop”, but as I recall at the time Eddie said Sammy’s capabilities allowed him to do more of what he really wanted to that Dave just wouldn’t work with. If pushed, yeah now I prefer the early albums just because there’s more big riff guitar driven songs but I still happily spin the Hagar stuff – I just skip more songs. Ask my wife though and she’d answer the exact opposite, and I have friends who hands-down prefer the Sammy era. That was also when we were teenagers and moved into our 20’s, and the version of the band whose concerts we went to, so that played a part.

    One thing I do say to myself every time I listen to VH with Sammy though – he is a WAY better singer than Dave ever was. Doesn’t mean the songs are always better, but damn that guy can sing.

    Anyway, this is about Eddie. RIP King Edward, as big of an icon there ever was, I’ll turn the volume up just a little more every time I listen to Van Halen.

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