Eddie Van Halen of Van Halen was honored last night at the 2020 Billboard Music Awards in Los Angeles last night (October 14) held at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood without an audience in attendance and livestreamed to fans around. The show played a clip of Van Halen performing the smash hit “Panama” at the 2015 Billboard Music Awards, followed by a single shot of the world-famous and iconic Frankenstrat guitar on stage in the spotlight. Kelly Clarkson, who hosted the program, paid tribute to Eddie at the ceremony, saying: “Just a few days ago, a true giant was taken from us: Eddie Van Halen. He was a legendary guitarist, an amazing musician and an incredible songwriter.” After the performance of “Panama”, she added: “That moment is one that all who saw will always remember.”
The 1980s was a truly golden age for rock music. As a lot of the successful bands from 1970 transitioned to new era of music competing with heavier styles of rock, New Wave, Punk, Post-Punk and Pop music, many acts had to step up their game to stay alive. While some adapted to new sounds to stay a float and reach for ears and hits, others fell by the wayside. One band that managed to changed while keeping true to what made them great was Van Halen. As proved by their definitive work on 1984 (Warner Bros.), released thirty-five years ago on January 9th, 1984, the album would not only mark the final chapter (at the time) for the David Lee Roth led period of the group, but set a new bench mark for them at the same time.