TONECHASER – Understanding Edward: My 26-Year Journey with Edward Van Halen

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This topic has 9 voices, contains 48 replies, and was last updated by  unchainedheart 6 days ago.

October 1, 2022 at 8:26 am Quote #65816

wjamflan
(1061)

Now that these books have been shipped to some, what do you all think of the actual book (not the package)?

The reason I ask is because Steven was supposed to write Ed’s biography in the 80′s. He worked on interviewing him and others for years before Ed pulled out of their arrangement and they had a falling out.

Is the book about Ed’s life, or just Steven’s interactions with him? Is there anything new ABOUT ED in the book? Is it worth buying a copy?

Descriptions like the following seem more Steven-centric:

“The author writes about spending time with Edward; jamming with him (unbelievably!); introducing him to Ritchie Blackmore, Billy Gibbons and Les Paul; attending NAMM Shows with him; buying him a set of guitar strings; and sharing moments with the guitarist that were both dark and ebullient.”

What do those of you who bought one think?


“This hamburger don’t need no helper.” – DLR 5/17/15


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October 6, 2022 at 4:06 pm Quote #65831

wjamflan
(1061)

Since no one replied, I took a chance and ordered my own copy. It arrived today. So, if anyone would still like to order one and is wondering about the turnaround time, it came pretty quickly.


“This hamburger don’t need no helper.” – DLR 5/17/15


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December 5, 2022 at 4:22 pm Quote #66022

wjamflan
(1061)

I was planning on writing a review when I finished the book, but I thought I would share the following since no one is talking about the book here.

In Chapter 33, Steve Rosen writes about his taped conversation with Ed on July 14, 1985. In it, he reveals that Ed talked about the possibility of Sammy Hagar joining Van Halen for the first time. Here are some tidbits from that conversation that I found fascinating.

EVH: “I just said, ‘Look, I can’t stand your music,” Edward said at the outset of the tape, referring to Hagar, “but would you be willing to come down and sit and try to sing to my stuff?’ He said, ‘Sure, when?’ and I said, ‘See ya tomorrow.’ ”

After a discussion about plane tickets, cocaine, and Kramer, Ed says:

EVH: “Sammy, God. I picked up a couple tapes of his… whew, shit.”

Steve Rosen: “Good, huh?”

EVH: “No, bad.”

SR: Oh, his songs.

EVH: “Yeah, but he can sing. You by chance have an old Montrose tape?”

After Steve fails to produce a tape (he had records), and they talk about Ed’s preference for Bon Scott and how he tried to get Sammy (and Mike) to sing like Scott on Good Enough, Ed offers the following:

EVH: “Yeah, OK. Bon Scott could sing. Powerage? He was one of the few singers that I would listen to the lyrics and know the words…. Sammy tends to get a little spacey, but he’s into that kind of stuff like aliens and that kind of shit… Sam likes to wing it in a funny way. The way he writes tunes is…”

SR: “Really? It’s so weird. I can’t imagine.”

EVH: “Well, shit tunes like 55 or whatever. The arrangement is so weird. There’s no solid… there’s nothing you can get a handle on really except for the (sings the tag line) ‘I can’t drive 55.’ ”

Following a discussion about Live Aid, Ed says:

EVH: “Sammy’s coming down tomorrow. That’s all the news there is.”

And then they talk about who will play what instruments and Ed’s desire to just have fun.

This exchange gives you a window into some of the new information released in the book, at least it was new to me. While Sammy is out there talking about poles etc., I think it’s interesting to finally learn what Ed thought of his prospective singer and his career, especially the solo career, to that day in 1985.

For me personally, it also makes me happy to learn that Ed was not oblivious to Sammy’s faults, even while he recognized a uniqueness in his voice and vocal approach. Too often, he is portrayed as a drunken idiot who only thought about what notes his fingers played, if he thought at all. It’s nice to see that he had his own preferences, and it’s also nice to consider that even though he hated Hagar’s solo work, he never criticized it publicly, even after Hagar criticized everything about the man. Ed just never found his Bon Scott.

And for what it is worth, there are similar discussions about Michael Anthony as well.

Hope this provides some insight where there was none.


“This hamburger don’t need no helper.” – DLR 5/17/15


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December 6, 2022 at 11:59 am Quote #66024

vhrob
(1665)

Wow I haven’t made it that far in the book yet but I need to check that out. Thats some cool info… interesting to note that Ed thought Sam’s music sucked hahaha…

I remember some interview years ago where Ed and Al were talking about 3 lock box and how much it sucked hahaha Cant remember what interview that was but I remember reading it in a mag years ago…. doesnt surprise me they didnt like his music. They certainly gave an awesome spin to One Way To Rock and 55 when they played it in, 86 and 88 and a little in 91 – 95…

Rob


vhtrading member since 2000


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December 6, 2022 at 4:46 pm Quote #66025

wjamflan
(1061)

vhrob: I remember some interview years ago where Ed and Al were talking about 3 lock box and how much it sucked hahaha Cant remember what interview that was but I remember reading it in a mag years ago…. doesnt surprise me they didnt like his music.
Rob

Rob, if I remember right, the Three Lock Box quote was Ed trying to give props to Sammy for having a deeper meaning to the song, even when it appeared to be shallow on the surface. I’ll look and see if I can find it.

Regardless, Ed was showing grace and trying to be nice, despite having clear feelings about Sammy’s lyric writing. I don’t think it was an accident that they called Desmond Child to help in that area in the 90′s, not that he was Bob Dylan either. But I digress….


“This hamburger don’t need no helper.” – DLR 5/17/15


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December 6, 2022 at 5:20 pm Quote #66028

wjamflan
(1061)

Found it.

Guitar World – July 1988 – Ed, Eddie, Edward Interview with Bud Scoppa

BS: “Do you know where they come from, the ideas? Do they just kind of pop into your head? Or do they pop into your fingers first?”

EVH: “A lot of times, yeah. Sammy has this theory – his three-lock-box theory – where spiritually, mentally, and physically, you gotta be together in order for anything creative to really happen. He has a song called ‘Three Lock Box’, which a lot of people thought was about… [runs his right index finger in and out of his left fist] you know? It ain’t – it’s a pretty heavy thing. Actually, I agree with it. You can have an idea in your head, but if you can’t execute it, what’s the use? You got to have the technical shit down. That’s what I mean when I say that it comes from your fingers sometimes. You’ll be playing and, all of a sudden, you’ll have an idea in your head and your fingers will just go with it. And the more you do that, and the more you listen to other things, something’s bound to filter through and come out.”

That being said, I never loved this interview, not because of this quote, but because I thought Bud Scoppa was an irritating interviewer. Whatever…. Clearly, Ed was trying to align with his best friend at the time, regardless of what he actually thought of the lyrics.


“This hamburger don’t need no helper.” – DLR 5/17/15


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December 7, 2022 at 10:07 am Quote #66029

vhrob
(1665)

wjamflan: Found it.

Guitar World – July 1988 – Ed, Eddie, Edward Interview with Bud Scoppa

BS: “Do you know where they come from, the ideas? Do they just kind of pop into your head? Or do they pop into your fingers first?”

EVH: “A lot of times, yeah. Sammy has this theory – his three-lock-box theory – where spiritually, mentally, and physically, you gotta be together in order for anything creative to really happen. He has a song called ‘Three Lock Box’, which a lot of people thought was about… [runs his right index finger in and out of his left fist] you know? It ain’t – it’s a pretty heavy thing. Actually, I agree with it. You can have an idea in your head, but if you can’t execute it, what’s the use? You got to have the technical shit down. That’s what I mean when I say that it comes from your fingers sometimes. You’ll be playing and, all of a sudden, you’ll have an idea in your head and your fingers will just go with it. And the more you do that, and the more you listen to other things, something’s bound to filter through and come out.”

That being said, I never loved this interview, not because of this quote, but because I thought Bud Scoppa was an irritating interviewer. Whatever…. Clearly, Ed was trying to align with his best friend at the time, regardless of what he actually thought of the lyrics.

awesome man yup thats one of them… but there is another one somewhere I remember reading where Al and Ed are talking about it and I think it was Al says something like, “the lyrics arent like that 3 lock box crap or that Heavy Metal crap”…. I think it was mid 90s or something… hahaha

Rob


vhtrading member since 2000


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December 7, 2022 at 2:50 pm Quote #66030

unchainedheart
(1815)

Is there someone who lives in Canada who bought this book?


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December 7, 2022 at 4:27 pm Quote #66031

wjamflan
(1061)

unchainedheart: Is there someone who lives in Canada who bought this book?

I’m in the US


“This hamburger don’t need no helper.” – DLR 5/17/15


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December 7, 2022 at 4:29 pm Quote #66032

wjamflan
(1061)

vhrob: awesome man yup thats one of them… but there is another one somewhere I remember reading where Al and Ed are talking about it and I think it was Al says something like, “the lyrics arent like that 3 lock box crap or that Heavy Metal crap”….I think it was mid 90s or something… hahaha

Rob

I’ll have to see if I have that one. Maybe it’s from when Gary was with them? I’ll look.


“This hamburger don’t need no helper.” – DLR 5/17/15


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December 7, 2022 at 5:13 pm Quote #66033

unchainedheart
(1815)

wjamflan: I’ll have to see if I have that one. Maybe it’s from when Gary was with them? I’ll look.

I just talk with Steve Rosen and everything is fine,thanks everyone


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December 8, 2022 at 10:25 am Quote #66036

unchainedheart
(1815)

Hi guys,i have bought Eruption: Conversations with Eddie Van Halen which to me is the best book i’ve read on Edward.Is the Tonechaser worth it because it looks good but Mr.Rosen is charging me 50$ for shipping to Montreal which is way overprice,i ship and buy stuff on a regular base and never paid that much for a book that size.So i want to know how well written it is,i know it’s an interview bundle like the Eruption book wich has a nice feel to it.thanks


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December 8, 2022 at 3:55 pm Quote #66037

wjamflan
(1061)

unchainedheart: Hi guys,i have bought Eruption: Conversations with Eddie Van Halen which to me is the best book i’ve read on Edward.Is the Tonechaser worth it because it looks good but Mr.Rosen is charging me 50$ for shipping to Montreal which is way overprice,i ship and buy stuff on a regular base and never paid that much for a book that size.So i want to know how well written it is,i know it’s an interview bundle like the Eruption book wich has a nice feel to it.thanks

Honestly, that’s pretty steep. As I said the other day, I was going to review the book when I finished reading it – I have another 100 pages to go – but I’ll offer a brief review now.

I would not say it is exceptionally well written, but it’s not badly written.

If the Tolinksi book is the only one you have, then I would say that you are missing out on a great deal of available information about EVH. The lion’s share of that information is from interviews that Rosen submitted for publication in Guitar World etc. Do you have to buy this book to get most of it? The simple answer to that is no.

For example, if you have Guitar World Presents Eddie Van Halen, then you have almost all of the essential information from the first 300 pages of this book.

There are occasional tidbits of information or anecdotes that are new, and the occasional extended interview that is illuminating (regarding Mike and Ted, for ex). In addition, there are times when Steve provides context for the interviews that is helpful, but most are not. In summary, there is not that much essential information in the first 3/5 of the book to warrant paying a $50 shipping charge, especially if you have all of the magazines or the GW Presents book.

The latter part of the book seems to be where most of the new information is located. In the interest of full disclosure, I am not done with it yet. See my post above for an example of the seemingly new information to be found. If you are looking for more information about what took place in the summer of 1985 and beyond, then maybe this book will be an essential purchase for you. If not, then seek out the GW Presents book. We can get it in The US from WalMart for $15.

As an EVH fan, it was an essential purchase for me, but truth be told, I bought it without much real information and did not pay $50 for shipping. The official description is woefully inadequate, and no one answered when I asked here, so I hope this brief overview helps you make a more informed decision about purchasing. Good luck.


“This hamburger don’t need no helper.” – DLR 5/17/15


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December 8, 2022 at 5:28 pm Quote #66038

unchainedheart
(1815)

wjamflan: Honestly, that’s pretty steep. As I said the other day, I was going to review the book when I finished reading it – I have another 100 pages to go – but I’ll offer a brief review now.

I would not say it is exceptionally well written, but it’s not badly written.

If the Tolinksi book is the only one you have, then I would say that you are missing out on a great deal of available information about EVH. The lion’s share of that information is from interviews that Rosen submitted for publication in Guitar World etc. Do you have to buy this book to get most of it? The simple answer to that is no.

For example, if you have Guitar World Presents Eddie Van Halen, then you have almost all of the essential information from the first 300 pages of this book.

There are occasional tidbits of information or anecdotes that are new, and the occasional extended interview that is illuminating (regarding Mike and Ted, for ex). In addition, there are times when Steve provides context for the interviews that is helpful, but most are not. In summary, there is not that much essential information in the first 3/5 of the book to warrant paying a $50 shipping charge, especially if you have all of the magazines or the GW Presents book.

The latter part of the book seems to be where most of the new information is located. In the interest of full disclosure, I am not done with it yet. See my post above for an example of the seemingly new information to be found. If you are looking for more information about what took place in the summer of 1985 and beyond, then maybe this book will be an essential purchase for you. If not, then seek out the GW Presents book. We can get it in The US from WalMart for $15.

As an EVH fan, it was an essential purchase for me, but truth be told, I bought it without much real information and did not pay $50 for shipping. The official description is woefully inadequate, and no one answered when I asked here, so I hope this brief overview helps you make a more informed decision about purchasing. Good luck.

Thanks a lot,i truly appreciate the review.Being a die hard fan for over 40 years my thirst for new V-H knowledge is still there especially about Edward but the thing about getting older is more of knowing what i truly need and what i don’t so thanks again my friend for your answer,i will definitely buy the Guitar world book that you point in your above post.


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December 15, 2022 at 11:14 am Quote #66045

ron
(10985)

Book signing for Tonechaser on January 9th at Book Soup. Steve will be talking a bit about the book, taking some questions and signing books beginning at 7:00 p.m.
Book Soup is located at 8818 Sunset Boulevard, West Hollywood, CA 90069.
Here is the link: https://www.booksoup.com/event/steven-rosen


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