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TONECHASER by STEVE ROSEN

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Understanding Edward:

My 26-Year Journey with

Edward Van Halen

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Tonechaser is not your typical biography. Rather, it is a strikingly personal account of Steven Rosen’s twenty-plus year odyssey with Eddie Van Halen, one of the greatest and most enigmatic musicians of the 20th century. What was it like to call Ed a friend? Rosen tells all in this fascinating and unique memoir.

– Brad Tolinski, author of Eruption: Conversations With Eddie Van Halen, former editor-in-chief of Guitar World Magazine.

I love this book because it details in Eddie's own words how much he loved and cared about making great music with his guitar.

- Joe Satriani

An unparalleled collection of early and essential EVH interviews. Passionate, unfiltered, and uncensored, this is the real Eddie, confiding to his friend.

- Jas Obrecht, Talking Guitar

Steve was an insider during Edward's most mythical days. It's certainly a pleasure to join them vicariously for adventures musical and otherwise.

- Paul Gilbert

This book is awesome! Makes you feel like you are right there in the room with Edward. Steve is such a honest author and writer. He really details the vibes that were going down in his view but also leaves room for our interpretation. Great read!

- Doug Aldrich

Steve Rosen is a professional music journalist with a career spanning 50 years. During this period, he has published well over 1,000 articles in major periodicals originating from around the globe. Rosen was the West Coast correspondent for Guitar World magazine for four years during the seminal mid-‘80s, when he wrote eight cover stories—including three lead features on Edward Van Halen recognized as pivotal pieces on the legendary guitarist. 

 

As a contributor to Guitar Player magazine, Rosen also wrote a prodigious 16 covers in a six-year span. A recognized authority on the eclectic world of Rock, Rosen has been tapped seven times to write books on several high-profile musicians, including Jeff Beck, Prince, Bruce Springsteen, Black Sabbath, Free/Bad Company and Randy Rhoads. 

 

The traveling troubadour’s work has taken him to distant vistas in search of mysterious stories and elusive sagas—hand-selected to accompany numerous bands as a traveling wordsmith for the likes of Led Zeppelin, The Who, Deep Purple, Jethro Tull, Loggins & Messina, ZZ Top, Aerosmith, Lenny Kravitz, Alice Cooper, The Firm, Van Halen, and others. 

 

Recently, Rosen’s main focus has been organizing his incredibly extensive and rare collection of audio interviews dating back to 1973. The entire library represents well over 1,500 hours of content, with hundreds and hundreds of classic rock’s most-engaging, enraging and entrancing characters, including Edward Van Halen. This archival process led to the unearthing of what Rosen called “The Twilight Tapes”—50 interviews representing hours of late-night phone calls with the Van Halen guitarist, who happened to become a very close friend over the years. “The Twilight Tapes” sparked the idea to sit down to write TONECHASER in 2020 and the rest, as they say, is rock and roll history.


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I am working with distributors in Australia and Europe and “Tonechaser” is available through them.

For Australian buyers, contact Adam Roach and for European buyers, please reach out to Michel Schinkel

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I did my first interview in 1972 in London with Joe Cocker. Not knowing what I was doing or how long I might be interviewing rock and roll musicians, I recorded over the cassette. Thus began a career that would continue for virtually 50 years. I was lucky...I was very lucky. I arrived at a time when music magazines were being born and those magazines had pages that needed to be filled. I began writing for an assortment of mags that included the Los Angeles Free Press, Creem, Circus, Circus Raves, and Musician. Eventually, I placed three stories in Rolling Stone and branched out to writing for musician-centric publications such as Guitar Player and Guitar World

 

This was a heady, beautiful time. Record labels and management companies couldn't do enough to entice rock journalists into writing about their clients so I was routinely flown around the country, put up in chi chi hotels, barraged with a ton of cool rock swag (read: t-shirts, records, concert tickets) and given access to the greatest musicians in the universe.

 

There are too many to name but I had my favorites: Jeff Beck, Jimmy Page, Paul Kossoff, Peter Frampton, Steve Winwood, Brian Wilson, Pete Townshend, Keith Moon, John Entwistle, Jack Bruce, Supertramp, Bad Company, Billy Gibbons, Ritchie Blackmore, Dave Davies, Rory Gallagher and hundreds of others. And Edward, of course.

 

I met these legends; I spent time with them. I hung out in their dressing rooms and went on the road with them. I wrote stories about them and saw those stories printed in mags around the world and all bearing my name.

 

I was lucky...very lucky. But I worked hard at it. Very, very hard.

I was given an up-close, personal and penetrating look into the lives of these amazing people. On top of all of that, I was paid for the privilege.

Hell, I would have done it for free.

All photos taken by Neil Zlozower, Glen La Ferman, Neal Preston, Ross Marino and an assortment of unknown photographers. Thank you to all these amazing professionals for supporting the book.