Edward Lodewijk "Eddie" Van Halen (born January 26, 1955) is a Dutch-American guitarist, keyboardist, songwriter and producer, best known as the lead guitarist and co-founder of the heavy metal/hard rock band Van Halen, inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2007 . Eddie Van Halen is widely known for his innovative performing and recording styles in shredding, tapping, scratching solos and high frequency feedback; he is also known for energetic and acrobatic stage performances. The All Music Guide has described him as "undoubtedly one of the most influential, original, and talented rock guitarists of the 20th century."
Born in The Netherlands, Edward Lodewijk Van Halen is a son of guitarist father Jan Van Halen and mother Eugenia (née Van Beers). Eugenia Van Halen was originally from Indonesia. Edward's middle name was derived from composer Ludwig van Beethoven. (Lodewijk is the Dutch version of Ludwig.) Edward continued this naming tradition by naming his son Wolfgang Van Halen after composer Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. Shortly after Edward was born in Amsterdam, the family moved to the city of Nijmegen. In 1962, at the age of seven, Edward moved with his family to the United States, settling in Pasadena, California.
Eddie learned to play the piano as a child and has won many different talent shows. His older brother Alex also played the piano. However, playing the piano did not prove sufficiently challenging or interesting to him — he once said in an interview, "Who wants to sit in front of the piano? That's boring." Consequently, while Alex began playing the guitar, Eddie bought a drum kit and began practicing drumming along with Arty Gomez in Lincoln Heights.They would practice for hours day after day. After Eddie heard Alex's performance of the The Surfaris' drum solo in the song "Wipe Out", he grew annoyed that his brother had overtaken his ability and decided to switch and begin learning how to play the electric guitar.