The City Council of Pasadena, California, is exploring ways to pay tribute to its most famous musical export, Van Halen, following the death earlier this month of the band's iconic guitarist and co-founder Eddie Van Halen.
City manager Steve Mermell reports his office has been flooded with requests in recent weeks for tributes to Eddie, and the city wants to respond by creating a lasting memorial to the 20th century music icon.
Suggestions so far have included erecting a statue of Eddie, renaming a city park after him and turning his and his brother Alex Van Halen's childhood home into a historic landmark. The idea of renaming a street after Eddie received pushback from residents who feared such an address would attract large crowds and cause traffic jams.
Mermell recommended forming a task force to consider all the options and create a plan for the city.
Born in Amsterdam in 1955 to a Dutch father and Indonesian-Dutch mother, Eddie and Alex Van Halen arrived in Pasadena in the early-'60s. The boys began taking classical piano lessons at a young age and eventually fell in love with rock and roll, switching from piano to guitar and drums.
In 1972, the brothers formed a band and began playing gigs locally in Southern California. Two years later they changed the band's name to Van Halen, and by 1978 they released their groundbreaking debut album, which was eventually certified Diamond by the RIAA for sales of over 10 million copies.
Van Halen is one of the biggest-selling rock bands in history and was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2007.
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