Wednesday, June 20, 2012

The monster that is Eddie Van Halen

For all of you who thought Eddie Van Halen was a gimmicky player. Check this out. It is a one on one interview with Steve Rosen. Eddie on a little practice amp - mostly clean and turned way down. MAN could he alternate pick! Scary. This is a really cool interview.

Eddie Van Halen hit me like a freight train the first time I heard him. I was 8 or 9 years old the first time I heard the sound of  "Eruption" as it blared from the open window of a teenager-filled car. What hit me was the intensity of the sound, the grinding now famous "brown-sound" (combination of a cranked Marshall with a Flanger). Man that was cool .... they were cool .... HE was cool.

The thing that should be noticed by y'all is that you can hear that sound in this interview. Clearly this SOUNDS like Eddie. But wait a minute? Where is the Marshall and all the pedals? There are none! The sound lives in how he attacks the strings. The tone is IN his hands.

So the next time you think your tone sucks and you head off in search of another new amp. Remember this clip. A player like this could make the worst gear sound simply fantastic. Because he is just that - fantastic.


  1. yep,the tone is in his hands BUT he ALWAYS USES very light strings AND tune the guitar half step down. These are things that make easier to do Van Halen stuff.

  2. Sure his strings were a part of his sound .... But he is using a very standard gauge of string. Same as a lot of other guitarists yet they don't sound like Eddie. Same with the tuning (he didn't always tune down BTW, many early VH tunes are in A440). Those things all play roles, as does humbucker pickups and a Marshall in his early days. Spanish Fly"

  3. Sorry got cut off there for whatever reason?

    Spanish Fly - the acoustic piece - sounds as much like Eddie as any of his electric work. So it really isn't in the gear.