Jack White paid tribute to Eddie Van Halen during his “Saturday Night Live” musical appearance.
For a performance of his song “Lazaretto”, White used a cobalt blue model guitar designed by the legendary VAN HALEN axeman, who died on Tuesday (October 6) following a long battle with cancer.
Hours before his appearance, White announced that he would be honoring Eddie, writing on social media: “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 won’t 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.”
In 2018, White told Rolling Stone that he made his “Boarding House Reach” album using a Wolfgang Special guitar and a 5150 amp from Eddie Van Halen‘s signature brand. Jack said it was the result of reading an interview with Van Halen talking about the guitar. “He said, ‘I wanted something that doesn’t fight me,'” White recalled. “I was, like, ‘Those are the magic bad words that I completely disagree with. And that’s why I’m picking his guitar.'”
Eddie died at the age of 65 at St. John’s Hospital in Santa Monica, California. His wife, Janie, was by his side, along with his son, Wolfgang, and Alex, Eddie‘s brother and VAN HALEN drummer.
The iconic VAN HALEN axeman passed away from complications due to cancer, his son confirmed.
Rolling Stone magazine ranked Eddie Van Halen No. 8 in its list of the 100 greatest guitarists.