The first time I heard the instrumental titled “Eruption,” I looked at my friend and asked if the record player was at the wrong speed. Nobody I’ve ever heard played that fast and all over the guitar fretboard. After a long study of the song introduced the song, “You Really Got Me,” I found a new guitar god.
Van Halen’s first single started as a warm-up exercise Eddie used. The band’s producer, Ted Templeman, thought it would make a great addition to the album, so they included it. Eddie Van Halen insisted there is a mistake in this song near the beginning. “Whenever I hear it, I always think, Man, I could’ve played it better,” he has said. “Eruption” upped the game for every guitar player. The technique of tapping the fingerboard had been around for a while. He never invented it, just perfected it. Eddie brought finger tapping into rock ‘n’ roll’s arena. To this day, it is the best two minutes of rock history.
Eddie’s son Wolfgang sits on a massive collection of tapes from the 5150 home recording studio that still haven’t been gone through after his father’s passing. Wolfgang says when the right time comes around and he has the time they will go over 1,000’s tapes from the vault. I wonder if any will see the light of day. Not for a Van Halen extra but just a collection of Eddie’s fantastic playing.