Demand for Van Halen gear surges following guitar icon’s death
Edward Van Halen was not just one of the most influential guitar players of all time, but also one of the instrument’s most important gear innovators, and in the wake of his tragic passing in October 2020, interest in the equipment associated with Van Halen throughout his career has surged.
According to data gathered by the world’s largest online gear marketplace, Reverb, searches for certain gear associated with EVH spiked by as much as 80 per cent in the aftermath of his death.
“Eddie Van Halen’s passing created a massive surge in searches for gear associated with the iconic guitarist, which has been really inspiring to see,” Cyril Nigg, Reverb’s Director of Analytics told Guitar.com. “Reverb saw four times more searches for terms like “EVH” compared to the same period the previous year. Two guitar brands that saw significant search spikes were Kramer and EVH. Searches for Kramer, which made the first Frankenstrat replicas that Eddie endorsed, were up 80 per cent compared to the same time the previous year.”
Given that some of Van Halen’s most iconic and famous guitar moments involved innovative use of effects – such as the timeless intro to Ain’t Talkin’ Bout Love – it’s perhaps unsurprising that EVH-related effects proved the most popular thing players were searching for in a quest to capture some of his magic.
“Pedals are the easiest and most cost-effective way for most guitarists to sound like Eddie, so it’s no surprise that many of the effects that helped define his tone are popular,” Nigg explained. “The MXR Phase 90 and MXR EVH Flanger were two of the most popular pedals last year. Searches for ‘phase’ pedals were up 75 per cent compared to the same period last year.”
While a surge in interest in the immediate wake of a legend’s passing is perhaps to be expected, it’s a testament to the enduring legacy of Edward Van Halen that nearly four months after his death, guitarists are still searching for gear that’s associated with him – reflecting not just the esteem in which he’s held, but the buoyant nature of the guitar industry as a whole, as Cyril explains:
“We’re seeing continued interest for Van Halen-related gear, and ‘EVH’ remains one of our top search terms,” he adds. “Based on what we saw on Reverb last year, it’s clear that the guitar is alive and well. Orders and searches for guitars have been up significantly, as well as searches for music gear that you pair with your guitar – amps, guitar straps, effects pedals, and more. It’s inspiring to see that Eddie’s influence and legacy will live on and continue to inspire future generations of players.”
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