‘SNL’ musical guest Jack White paid tribute to late music legend Eddie Van Halen, who passed away from throat cancer after a 20 year battle on Oct. 6.
Eddie Van Halen will never be forgotten. The incredibly talented guitarist was remembered with by Jack White, 45, on Saturday Night Live Oct. 10. During his first performance, The White Stripes musician placed a blue guitar donning Eddie’s initials and the first name of his son Wolfgang Van Halen,, 29, in the background as he played “Ball and Biscuit” and “Don’t Hurt Yourself.” Jack was a last minute replacement for country crooner Morgan Wallen, 27, who was dropped from the line-up after a maskless partying scandal.
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i thought it could be a nice gesture for me to use this blue eddie van halen model guitar for one of the songs tonight on SNL. the guitar was designed by eddie (with a few customizations i had added). eddie was very kind to me and saw to it that this guitar was made for me to my specs. i wont even insult the man’s talent by trying to play one of his songs tonight. thanks again eddie for this guitar and rest in peace sir.
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Jack also made note of the tribute on his own Instagram account. “I thought it could be a nice gesture for me to use this blue eddie van halen model guitar for one of the songs tonight on SNL,” he began an Instagram caption on a photo of the guitar, posted on Saturday, Oct. 10. “the guitar was designed by eddie (with a few customizations i had added). eddie was very kind to me and saw to it that this guitar was made for me to my specs. i wont even insult the man’s talent by trying to play one of his songs tonight. thanks again eddie for this guitar and rest in peace sir,” he added.
Notably, Eddie appeared as musical guest on Feb. 28, 1987 when then-wife Valerie Bertinelli, 60, hosted the show. The 65-year-old’s death was sadly confirmed by his son with Valerie, Wolfgang, 28, on social media. “I can’t believe I’m having to write this, but my father, Edward Lodeqik Van Halen, has lost his long and arduous battle with cancer this morning,” Wolfgang tweeted on Oct. 6. “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 the loss. I love you so much, Pop,” he added.
Eddie passed away at St. Johns Hospital in Santa Monica, with his wife Janie, ex-wife Valerie, and sons Wolfgang and Alex, by his side. The star battled throat cancer for 20 years, which he managed to keep out of the public eye for a decade. Like her son, Valerie also posted a deeply emotional tribute to her ex-husband, who she split from in 2007. “40 years ago my life changed forever when I met you,” she began.
“You gave me the one true light in my life, our son, Wolfgang. Through all your challenging treatments for lung cancer, you kept your gorgeous spirit and that impish grin,” the Hot In Cleveland star continued. “I’m so grateful Wolfie and I were able to hold you in your last moments. I will see you in our next life my love,” she concluded her post, shared to Instagram on Oct. 6. Valerie included a sweet black-and-white photo of the couple with then-baby Wolfgang, then just a few months old. “Love you ma,” Wolfgang commented on the post.