Eddie Van Halen has been one of the most influential guitarists ever since Van Halen released their iconic self-titled debut album in 1978.
News of his death at the age of 65 spread quickly as did countless tributes to the late guitar god. Here is just a selection of guitarists and other rockers paying their respects to EVH.
My heart is broken. Eddie was not only a Guitar God, but a genuinely beautiful soul. Rest in peace, Eddie! ...Eddie Van Halen Dead at 65 from Cancer https://t.co/gITtcndQVv
Oh NO! Speechless. A trailblazer and someone who always gave everything to his music. A good soul. I remember first seeing him playing at the Starwood in 1976 and he WAS Eddie Van Halen. So shocked and sad. My condolences to Wolfie and the family. https://t.co/ExAWzFAEYJ
We are enormously saddened to hear about the untimely passing of Eddie Van Halen. We considered him an inspiration, an idol, and after spending a summer together on the road in '88, a friend. Sending love to Alex, @wolfvanhalen & everyone in the greater VH family.???? @RossHalfin pic.twitter.com/wZ9ZKNmK0q
@EddieVanHalen was one of the nicest guys I ever worked with and we shared so many laughs together. His influence on music and especially the guitar has been immeasurable. He was an absolute legend. Eddie, I'll see you on the other side, my friend. Love, Ozzy.
The world lost an icon, innovator, showman, virtuoso, master songwriter and perhaps one of the biggest inspirations ever to learn how to play guitar. Heartbroken to hear of Eddie Van Halen's passing. Our love, condolences and best wishes to his his family, friends and fans. #RIP pic.twitter.com/pGhPUXRzyb
I just heard about Eddie Van Halen and I feel terrible about it. Eddie was such a great guitarist and I remember how big Van Halen was, especially here in L.A. Love and Mercy to Eddie's family & friends. pic.twitter.com/PY8fyrx1Lu
I'm just devastated to hear the news of the passing of my dear friend Eddie Van Halen. He fought a long and hard battle with his cancer right to the very end. Eddie was one of a very special kind of person, a really great friend.
Rest In Peace to a Eddie Van Halen, Rock God. Favorite riff: Eruption. What's yours? pic.twitter.com/uP1k196Vw8
Crushed. So fucking crushed. RIP Eddie Van Halen. You changed our world. You were the Mozart of rock guitar. Travel safe rockstar.
Legendary guitar and musical innovator Edward Van Halen. 1955-2020. Heaven will be electric tonight. pic.twitter.com/hdLd7atI74
Rest in peace guitar legend Eddie Van Halen. ???? We will miss you. #fuckcancer @eddievanhalen #eddievanhalen pic.twitter.com/S4vnN3tyWc
Oh man, bless his beautiful creative heart. I love you Eddie Van Halen, an LA boy, a true rocker. I hope you jam with Jimi tonight. Break through to the other side my brother. ❤️❤️❤️ https://t.co/XpcTlPJq9A
Just when I thought 2020 couldn't get any worse, I hear Eddie Van Halen has passed. So shocking- One of the nicest, down to Earth men I have ever met and toured with. A true gent and true genius. RIP. So sad.Thoughts go out to his brother Alex, and his family.
https://t.co/QjAj45KED8 Apex talent. An unparalleled titan in the annals of rock n roll. One of the greatest musicians in the history of mankind. Rest In Peace, King Edward
Our son was 6 yrs old the first time he heard Eddie Van Halen.He looked at Savannah & me and asked..."Does he need two picks to play like that?"There are great guitarists... & there are innovators that change everything.Condolences to his family. #RIPEddieVanHalen ???? pic.twitter.com/qnhg3b1xxY
When you're a step up from being the greatest guitar player of all time, your name is @eddievanhalen. Thank you for the riffs Eddie, the solos, the good times, the energy, the attitude, the amazing live shows and that smile...oh that "I'm bringing whiskey to the party tonight and I don't need a glass, because it already comes in a bottle," type smile! God bless you #EdwardVanHalen, your work with @vanhalen and your music has done more to make the world a happier place than you'll ever know. And one more thing....after taking #NeilPeart, @kobebryant and now #EVH from us, 2020, will you kindly just FUCK OFF already?
Very sad to hear about the passing of @eddievanhalen. You will be missed. #RIPEddieVanHalen "I saw Van Halen destroy Sabbath at the Sheffield City Hall in 1977 ... Eddie was a big part of that, having essentially reinvented guitar playing just like Jimi Hendrix had done a generation earlier .... I had the pleasure of being on the same bill as Van Halen 7 years ago when Kings Of Chaos were on the same bill at the Stone Music Festival in Australia. I'm happy to say that his playing that night was as good as it's ever been, he certainly shook things up when he came on the scene .... Rest In Peace Eddie" - Joe Elliott "I distinctly remember the first moment I heard Eddie play. A good friend, also a guitarist, had just bought the first Van Halen album and came by my house and told me that I urgently needed to hear this. He wasn't wrong; it was a moment that redefined everything that I thought was possible about playing the guitar. The goalposts had just been moved. I stayed up all that night trying to learn from Eddie. Many, many decades later, and I'm still learning from Eddie." - Vivian Campbell Photo Credit: @markweissguy #EddieVanHalen @vanhalen
Simply put, one of the most important and influential guitarists to ever live. He embodied the idea of a progressive and exciting musician - not only on recordings but especially as a live performer. The electric guitar just doesn't get too much more exciting and fun than Ed. When I was a kid...probably about 7 years old...I swiped the VH 1 cassette from my aunties collection. I was just really discovering my own music at this age - so it was a magical and exciting time of discovery for me. Anyway, I heard her playing this tape with friends as they partied at our house..and couldn't help myself - I had to give it a few more (thousand) listens. I didn't even know what the actual cover looked like for years as I just found an old Air Supply cassette - chucked the tape and used the box, fashioning and drawing my own cover (which was an attempt at a pointy guitar much like Ed's first Explorer style guitar). Listening to this album and hearing EVH effortlessly burn through all these songs ..it was nothing short of an epiphany for me. Literally like riding a roller coaster. Escapism at its finest. I probably listened to this record every day until I was 9! In an era of 100 unbelievable guitarists he was THE guitarist - and every single guitar player agrees...and we never agree on anything!.. but this - we do. So much more can be said - but I'm just gonna leave it there for now..and go throw on some Women and Children First. Eddie Van Halen...jeeze..what a contribution. Thank you very much for opening up the electric guitar and rock and roll as we now know it! Wow!!????????????❤️
One of the greatest guitarists of all time! Rest in peace Eddie Van Halen pic.twitter.com/T0unvRXYmf
We're saddened to hear of Eddie Van Halen's untimely passing today. Given the news today, we want to dedicate our album Van Weezer to Eddie as a thank you for all the incredible music that soundtracked our youth and inspired the record. RIP EVH. pic.twitter.com/plb9WIuo64
"So saddened to hear of Eddie Van Halen's passing. I stood in awe and complete wonderment of Eddie's immense talent and amazing guitar ability. One of the greatest rockers ever and I will miss him."-John Fogerty pic.twitter.com/TjdduUSlhL
We are stunned to hear about the passing of our friend Eddie Van Halen. Our deepest heartfelt condolences to his family, friends and fans. A true legend, one of the greatest musicians ever in rock. He left an indelible mark. We love you Eddie... R.I.P. pic.twitter.com/iUdj3Jht9c
Devastated to hear the news about the passing of Eddie Van Halen. "Genius", "Legend" and "Pioneer" get thrown around way too often but, EVH earned every single one of them. TY for sharing your gifts w/the world. Sending our love to the family, friends + VH fans everywhere. pic.twitter.com/X5hA0c99r4
"To hell with the rules. If it sounds right, then it is." Rest in Peace to the original rule breaker, Eddie Van Halen. You will be missed, but your music and influence will live forever. pic.twitter.com/JkkFF83GWG
GALLERY: A Look at 1978’s Best Rock Albums
Van Halen's self-titled debut helped set a new standard for budding guitarists and frontmen. Eddie Van Halen remains one of the biggest guitar heroes ever, and David Lee Roth is still cited as one of the greatest performers, and much of that is thanks to this iconic debut.
A fan-favorite among the AC/DC faithful, 'Powerage' features some of the band's best songs including "Rock and Roll Damnation" and "Sin City."
Blondie's classic album 'Parallel Line' stretched from early rock covers with Buddy Holly's "I'm Gonna Love You Too" to disco with their monster hit "Heart of Glass."
The follow-up to 1976's 'Night Moves,' 'Stranger in Town' would go on to be certified six-times platinum and features the hits "Hollywood Nights," "We've Got Tonight," "Still the Same" and "Old Time Rock and Roll."
One of the albums that defined rock radio, 'Double Vision' contains classics like "Hot Blooded," "Blue Morning, Blue Day" and the title track.
The Police's debut album 'Outlandos d'Amour' would help sow the seeds of a trio that would go on to be one of the biggest bands of the 1980's thanks to songs like "Roxanne" and "Can't Stand Losing You."
Fifteen years into their career, The Rolling Stones were still great, and they proved it with one of their best albums, 'Some Girls,' which topped the album charts and featured the #1 single "Miss You."
Only having four songs total, the title track of Rush's 'Hemispheres' took up all of side one on the record. Side two, meanwhile, featured the epic instrumental "La Villa Strangiato."
The Cars' sleek look and sound helped to define the new wave sounds of the 1980's, but songs like "Just Want I Needed" and "My Best Friend's Girl" had an instantly classic sound.
The Who's 'Who Are You' was the band's final album with powerhouse drummer Keith Moon, who would die less than a month after the album's release. The title track, which was the last song on the album, was a great final blast from the original lineup.