Wolfgang Van Halen paid tribute to his father, rock icon Eddie Van Halen, with a performance of his debut single “Distance.” During an appearance on “The Today Show” on Friday, Van Halen premiered his new song, that safe to say, left audiences in tears.
“Distance,” which serves as the single for his solo project, Mammoth WVH, acts as an homage to Eddie Van Halen. Van Halen died Oct. 6 after a long battle with cancer.
“Distance” includes emotional lyrics such as “No matter what the distance is, I will be with you.”
Opening up about the song during his appearance on the morning show, Van Halen said the lyrics hold significance not just for him but also for anyone who suffered a loss.
He said that lyric is “almost like a mantra for you when you lose someone, anyone, that plays a large role in your life.” For Van Halen, “that’s kind of my mantra when I think about my dad.”
Van Halen, who added, “basically every single thing you hear on the upcoming album is a bunch of me’s all playing at the same time,” also performed an acoustic version of the song.
“Distance” is the first solo piece from Van Halen, who played bass for his dad since 2007.
Eddie Van Halen’s Son Honors Late Father With Sentimental Music Video
Only a month after his father’s passing, he released the song alongside a music video that featured clips from home movies of the 29-year-old with his father.
At the time of the release, Van Halen opened up about crafting the song, saying it wasn’t meant to be his debut single, and added he “thought my father would be here to celebrate its release. This is for him.”
According to Wolfgang, “My pop continued to struggle with various health issues.” Which forced him to imagine “what my life would be like without him and how terribly I’d miss him.” As a result he sat down and created the tribute piece.
“It was tough, you know, a lot of crying,” he said of the song during an earlier appearance on “The Today Show.”
“He was still my dad — and he was incredibly loving — and he was my best friend in many ways… I’m gonna keep going. Because I know that’s what he wanted, just to keep going.”
Van Halen plans to drop the new album on June 11. According to Rolling Stone, the album opens with a song titled “Mr. Ed,” another nod to his father.
Proceeds from “Distance” will also support his Eddie Van Halen’s favorite charity, Mr. Holland’s Opus Foundation.