QUEEN guitarist Brian May yesterday led the rock world’s tributes to ‘original and dazzling’ Eddie Van Halen following his death at the age of 65.
The man described as ‘Mozart for guitar’ died on Tuesday from cancer.
In an Instagram post, May said he was ‘always full of joy, always modest — and those truly magical fingers opened a door to a new kind of playing’. He added: ‘What a talent — what a legacy.’
The sad news was revealed by Eddie’s son, Van Halen bass player Wolfgang, who wrote on social media: ‘My father, Edward Lodewijk Van Halen, has lost his long and arduous battle with cancer.’
AC/DC’s lead guitarist Angus Young tweeted: ‘He leaves a big hole in a lot of hearts. To the Van Halen family my heartfelt sympathies.’
Kiss bassist Gene Simmons told the BBC of the ‘wonder of Eddie Van Halen and the band’, while Lenny Kravitz said: ‘Heaven will be electric tonight.’
Amsterdam-born Van Halen emigrated with his family to California in 1962. In 2015, Rolling Stone put him eighth in a list of the 100 greatest guitar players.