Van Halen. We all drew the band logo on our book covers and notebooks in school. We laughed when we heard "Hot for Teacher" because either you were, or your teacher was WAY OLD and you weren't. We all played air guitar every time Eddie would shred on the striped guitar that he called Frankenstein, guitar pick in his mouth, lit cigarette stuck in the neck, and that classic, adorable Eddie smile on his face. He LOVED playing guitar. He LOVED music and the sound of the guitar. He LOVED writing and making songs with his brother Alex, who played drums. Seeing Van Halen perform live was glorious!
I clearly remember standing on Eddie's side of the stage at what it now the XL Center the second time I saw Van Halen play, my mouth agape at his prowess on the strings. They sang to him, and he knew exactly how to touch them to get the exact sound he wanted. Eddie made it look effortless. He inspired just about every person that has ever played guitar EVER! Brad Paisley, Keith Urban, Lindsay Ell, Clare Dunn.
He was MEANT to play. He was ONE with a guitar. He created more than a rock legacy. He created a rock empire that no one will ever be able to match. RIP Eddie Van Halen.