Eddie Van Halen's passing is rough on the world of music, but us as a duo as well.

It seems just about everyone I've talked to yesterday and today has a time they saw Van Halen locally. Turns out they did come to the area quite a few times. I imagine one of the coolest of all these appearances was their first in the area; The Mississippi River Jam at Credit Island in Davenport in 1978.

Van Halen opened the show, followed by Journey, the Atlanta Rhythm Section, and the headliner was The Doobie Brothers.

All of their appearances in the area included:

  • July 16, 1978 - Credit Island, Davenport
  • August 3, 1982 - MetroCentre, Rockford
  • June 29, 1984 - Peoria Civic Center, Peoria
  • July 1, 1984 - MetroCentre, Rockford
  • April 24, 1986 - MetroCentre, Rockford
  • April 30, 1986 - Five Seasons Center, Cedar Rapids
  • October 31, 1988 - Five Seasons Center, Cedar Rapids
  • November 7, 1988 - Peoria Civic Center, Peoria
  • April 10, 1992 - Five Seasons Center, Cedar Rapids
  • April 11, 1992 -  Peoria Civic Center, Peoria
  • September 24, 1995 - Mark of the Quad Cities, Moline
  • September 20, 2004 - Mark of the Quad Cities, Moline

We actually were able to track down some photos of a couple times they came to town, specifically of Eddie:

There was a time around 2004-05 when Eddie Van Halen wasn't speaking to anyone in the media. Somehow we got the phone number to Eddie's 5150 Studios, and we'd call him early in the morning. Since it was 5 a.m. here, it was 3 a.m. there and Eddie was still up.

After warming up to us, he actually started talking to us. Imagine that, Eddie Van Halen talking to us!! These recordings have become known to us as the EVH Tapes. Word got around in the old Van Halen chat rooms about the phone calls. And like I said, Eddie wasn't talking to ANYONE. He had become a little bit of a recluse and we didn't realize at the time how special these conversations were.

We're even mentioned in the book, Edward Van Halen: A Definitive Biography by Kevin Dodds, mentioning our conversations with Eddie.

Just before Thanksgiving, a morning radio duo out of Davenport, Iowa - Dwyer & Michaels (Greg Dwyer and Bill Michaels of Q106.5) - somehow got ahold of Ed's phone number and called him up at random. They were surprised that he actually answered, even though Eddie was quite agitated upon first receiving their call. However, as the conversation progressed, Ed warmed up to the pair and let his guard down. Eventually, Ed would welcome their calls with grace and good humor. The radio duo became Edward's principal speaking outlet between 2003 and 2006; he spoke to them on six different occasions.

 

MTV's Matt Pinfield gave us a call today to tell his favorite stories about his friend Eddie:

Of course we can't forget some of the better pop culture uses of Van Halen's music:

Family Guy:

South Park:

Two and a Half Men:



 


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