DEF LEPPARD's Joe Elliott and Vivian Campbell have paid tribute to Eddie Van Halen, who died earlier today (Tuesday, October 6) at the age of 65. The legendary VAN HALEN guitarist's death was confirmed by his son, and VAN HALEN bassist, Wolfgang Van Halen.
Elliott said in a statement: "I saw VAN HALEN destroy [BLACK] 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....l 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.."
Campbell added: "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."
According to TMZ, Eddie died at St. John's Hospital in Santa Monica, California. His wife, Janie, was by his side, along with Wolfgang, and Alex, Eddie's brother and VAN HALEN drummer.
The site reports that Eddie's ongoing health battle went massively downhill in the last 72 hours, with doctors discovering his cancer had moved to his brain as well as other organs.
There have been a lot of rumors regarding the VAN HALEN guitarist's supposedly worsening health, with TMZ reporting recently that Van Halen has been traveling between the U.S. and Germany for cancer treatment going on several years now.
Last November, TMZ reported that Eddie spent several days in a hospital due to complications from his cancer treatment. Sources close to the legendary guitarist told the site he was admitted to the hospital with intestinal issues and abdominal pain, both the result of a bad reaction to the drugs Eddie was reportedly taking to battle throat cancer.
?: @markweissguy #EddieVanHalen @VanHalen pic.twitter.com/x4J6nfxOqY
— Def Leppard (@DefLeppard) October 6, 2020
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