In an interview with Marc Maron, former bandmate David Lee Roth revealed just how painful the experience was for the late artist, who was of Indonesian and Dutch descent.
By Kimmy Yam
Music fans around the world are mourning the loss of iconic Van Halen rock star Eddie Van Halen. And while many today honor his legacy as one of the all-time greatest guitarists, fans are also highlighting past interviews describing his encounters with painful racism and discrimination because of his mixed race in his early years.
Van Halen, who died Tuesday of throat cancer at 65, was the son of Dutch and Indonesian immigrants and spent his childhood in the Netherlands. His former bandmate David Lee Roth, a fellow rock superstar, once revealed on the podcast “WTF with Marc Maron” just how painful the experience was for the young Van Halen and his brother, drummer Alex Van Halen.
In the 2019 interview, Roth described how poorly the Van Halens’ parents were treated because of their mixed-race relationship in the 1950s.