How Did Eddie Van Halen Learn to Play Guitar? - Rolling Stone
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Hear Our New Podcast Tribute to Eddie Van Halen

Rolling Stone Music Now features an unheard Eddie Van Halen interview and much more on a new tribute episode

Eddie Van Halen of Van Halen performs at The Rosemont Horizion on April 22,1986. Credit: Gene Ambo / MediaPunch *NO FRANCE* *NO GERMANY* /IPX

Eddie Van Halen of Van Halen performs at The Rosemont Horizion on April 22,1986.

Gene Ambo/MediaPunch/IPx/AP

The new episode of Rolling Stone Music Now pays tribute to the late Eddie Van Halen, with never-before-heard audio from a 2008 interview with the guitarist that traces his early years as a musician and beyond. Why did the electric guitar last so long as rock’s defining instrument? “You can’t bend the strings of a piano,” Van Halen says.

The episode also includes a discussion between host Brian Hiatt and Van Halen scholar Greg Renoff (author of the revelatory book Van Halen Rising, on the group’s origins, as well as co-author of longtime producer Ted Templeman’s autobiography). In addition, we play clips of Gene Simmons, Steve Vai, and Tom Morello’s recent thoughts on Van Halen’s passing, courtesy of Rolling Stone‘s David Browne and Patrick Doyle.

To hear the entire episode, press play below, or download and subscribe on iTunes or Spotify.

Download and subscribe to our weekly podcast, Rolling Stone Music Now, hosted by Brian Hiatt, on iTunes or Spotify (or wherever you get your podcasts), and check out three years’ worth of episodes in the archive, including in-depth, career-spanning interviews with Bruce Springsteen, Halsey, Neil Young, the National, Questlove, Julian Casablancas, Sheryl Crow, Johnny Marr, Scott Weiland, Alice Cooper, Fleetwood Mac, Elvis Costello, Donald Fagen, Phil Collins, Alicia Keys, Stephen Malkmus, Sebastian Bach, Tom Petty, Kelly Clarkson, Pete Townshend, Bob Seger, the Zombies, Gary Clark Jr., and many more — plus dozens of episodes featuring genre-spanning discussions, debates, and explainers with Rolling Stone’s critics and reporters. Tune in every Friday at 1 p.m. ET to hear Rolling Stone Music Now broadcast on SiriusXM’s Volume, channel 106.

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