Following the death of Eddie Van Halen on Tuesday (October 6th), the Van Halen guitarist received near universal acclaim in tributes from his musical peers. However, one fellow music icon didn’t see fit to sing the rock legend’s praises. David Crosby dismissed Van Halen with a “meh,” and it has fans and musicians fuming.

Like Eddie Van Halen, Crosby is a Rock & Roll Hall of Famer, thanks to his work in The Byrds and Crosby, Stills & Nash. He was asked Saturday (October 10th) by a fan on Twitter about his opinion on the late guitarist, which he answered with a blunt “Meh.”

When another fan responded, “Wow, that was rude, unkind, and totally lacking empathy,” Crosby continued to dig himself into messy hole: “Sorry … just meant he does not move me much.”


It only got worse from there, when yet another Twitter follower wrote, “Yeah, the guy only CHANGED THE WORLD OF GUITAR. geeezzz dave.” To that one, Crosby wrote, “Hendrix changed the world of guitar. Nobody else really … look I get it … many of you loved Van Halen …. and the one time I met he was nice … and he was talented … meh to me means I don’t care that much … and I don’t … doesn’t mean he wasn’t good, he was but not for me.”

As Testament guitarist Alex Skolnick pointed out, Crosby could have phrased his answer in a more respectful way: “I appreciate @thedavidcrosby too much for this to get in the way, but a much better answer would have been: ‘I know he meant a lot to so many but his sound & style just weren’t my thing.'” Skolnick went on to point out that while it doesn’t seem that Patti Smith would be a big Van Halen fan, she took the time to pen a beautiful poem in honor of the guitarist.

L.A. Guns guitarist Tracii Guns took his criticism of Crosby even further, writing, “Wrong answer as f**k and rude as f**k!!! There are better ways to say you don’t care for someone’s music. That was very disrespectful. And yes straight out f**k you and your smug answer.”


Twisted Sister’s Dee Snider shared Tracii Guns’ tweet and added, “Agreed. That said, I’ve always hated @thedavidcrosby AND his mustache.”

Crosby is no stranger to stirring up controversy with his words. Several years ago, he caused a rift with his Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young bandmate Neil Young, when he called the latter’s then girlfriend and now-wife, Daryl Hannah, a “purely poisonous predator.” He went on to apologize profusely, but the damage was already done.

As mentioned, beyond Crosby, the tributes to Eddie Van Halen have been tremendous. Fellow guitar greats like Jimmy Page, Angus Young, and Tony Iommi have lauded Van Halen as one of the greatest guitarists ever, as have so many other musicians.


See the string of aforementioned tweets by Crosby and the responses below.