Eddie Van Halen has died at the age of 65.
According to reports, Van Halen passed away surrounded by his family at St. Johns Hospital in Santa Monica, California following a long battle with throat cancer.
After moving from the Netherlands to California at a young age, Eddie Van Halen quickly developed into something of a musical prodigy, particularly excelling at the piano before the lure of rock and roll eventually brought him to the guitar by his teens.
On the shoulders of pioneers such as Jimi Hendrix, he would go on to lead a generation of rock musicians who took the electric guitar to hitherto unimagined places, becoming one of the most famous exponents of the shredding/tapping techniques in the process.
The news of his death was announced by his son Wolfgang, who wrote on social media:
“I can’t believe I’m having to write this, but my father, Edward Lodewijk Van Halen, has lost his long and arduous battle with cancer this morning. He was the best father I could ever ask for. Every moment I’ve shared with him on and off stage was a gift. My heart is broken and I don’t think I’ll ever fully recover from this loss. I love you so much, Pop.”