5 Things You May Not Have Known About Eddie Van Halen

Friday, January 26, 2018
5 Things You May Not Have Known About Eddie Van Halen

When he was in 4th grade at Hamilton Elementary School in Pasadena, Eddie teamed with Alex and three other students to form a band called The Broken Combs. They performed during lunchtime, and while we have no confirmation as to whether or not they were the talk of the school, we do know from Eddie’s own remarks that it was playing with these guys inspired his first desire to become a professional musician.

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3. He contributed guest guitar to the Nicolette Larson song “Can’t Get Away From You.”

It seems likely that Eddie found his way onto the song because of the Ted Templeman connection, since Templeman was producing both Larson and Van Halen at the time, but since both artists were on Warner Brothers at the time, one can’t help but wonder why Eddie was only credited as “?” on Larson’s album. (Whatever his reasons, it’s still pretty funny.)

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4. He teamed up with Brian May of Queen for an EP called STAR FLEET PROJECT.

The title track, “Star Fleet,” was actually the theme to a Japanese sci-fi TV series about alien invaders that was being broadcast in the UK. “The heroes pilot space vehicles which can assemble into a giant robot for land battles (and) the aliens fly fantastic insect-like craft which spawn smaller fighting machines; all intent on possession of the secret of F Zero One,” explained May at the time. “Having been introduced to all this by my small boy, I became equally obsessed by it, and formed the idea of making a hard rock version of the title theme.” And so he did, with a crew of musicians which – in addition to Eddie – also featured drummer Alan Gratzer, bassist Phil Chen, and keyboardist Fred Mandel, with May’s Queen cohort Roger Taylor on backing vocals.

5. He donated 75 guitars to The Mr. Holland’s Opus Foundation.

You’ll be able to see this interview in its entirety if you click below, but Eddie has said that he had an excess of guitars but couldn’t find anyone who’d take them. This seems mildly implausible, since we’d bet that literally every single person reading the previous sentence thought, “Hell, I’ll take one right now,” but we’ll allow it, mainly because The Mr. Holland’s Opus Foundation is a great cause.

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