Enlarge Nancy Wilson photo credit: David Lawrence via Flickr. Eddie Van Halen photo credit: Carl Lender via Wikimedia Commons.

Nancy Wilson (Heart) Releases New Song Dedicated to Eddie Van Halen, “4 Edward”


What was your dawn-of-the-pandemic quarantine album? Back when the world was truly shut down, everything was topsy turvy, and every day — every hour — was a full emotional rollercoaster. Our psyches are primed for emotional connection during intense periods in our lives, and this one was no exception.

Mine was Heart’s Little Queen. I’d never fully explored Heart before, only knew the hits, and I decided to dive in. On one of many drives I’d take down to New York City and back to pick up clothes and other supplies from our hastily vacated apartment I put on Little Queen… and then I listened to it again. And again. Three times in a row on that drive. And three more on the way back up to Woodstock, plus who knows how many more in the ensuing days and weeks. Those songs will forever remind me of that time, seared into my brain. What incredible talents the Wilson sisters were (and still are)! Just breathtaking vocal performances, technical guitar work, a masterclass in songwriting, and immaculate production.

That hasn’t got much to do with today’s news, but thank you for reading anyway. Nancy Wilson, who publicly grieved for Eddie Van Halen when he died last October, has released a new solo track dedicated to him called “4 Edward.” It was written and performed solely on acoustic guitar because she once gifted the man his first non-electric axe. “When Heart toured with Van Halen I asked Eddie why he never played acoustic guitar, his response ‘I don’t have one,’” she explained. “I gave Eddie one of mine and he immediately wrote a song on it that stole my heart. After he passed, it hit me so hard I felt it was time to pay tribute to him.” The song is less than two minutes long, but I can completely feel Eddie’s spirit in it; the guitar work is absolutely gorgeous, full of nuance, dynamic and feel. It kinda brings me back to that first pandemic car ride I mentioned above even though it was written more than 40 years later. Love it.

Check out “4 Edward” below. It will appear on Wilson’s first ever solo album, You and Me, coming out on May 7; pre-order here.

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