Country star Keith Urban has paid tribute to Van Halen’s Eddie Van Halen following the news of the legendary rocker’s death at the age of 65 after a long battle with throat cancer.

Taking to social media and posting a black and white image of Van Halen, Urban admitted in the lengthy tribute that the guitar icon’s death had “hit him hard.”

“This hit me hard. There are lots of great guitar players in the world, but very VERY few true innovators,” the country crooner began.

“Players who seem to have arrived from a far distant planet, and who bring a completely new colour to the rainbow. Eddie Van Halen was this and so much more. Even without the finger-tapping, you had a player with extraordinary touch, tone, and a rhythmic pocket and bounce that floated like Ali in the ring.”

Urban continued, “He was a master of complex solos that spoke to non-musicians…THAT IS HARD TO DO. The reason was the exquisite melody in his heart and the joy in his soul of playing FOR people — and it came through like a ray of sun we ALL felt.”

Among other celebrity tributes to Eddie came from RHCP’s Flea, Lenny Kravitz, Tommy Iommi and more.

Eddie Van Halen died at the age of 65 following a battle with cancer, with the guitarist’s son, Wolfgang Van Halen, sharing the sad news on Twitter on Tuesday afternoon.

“I can’t believe I’m having to write this, but my father, Edward Lodewijk Van Halen, has lost his long and arduous battle with cancer this morning,” Wolfgang began.

“He was the best father I could ever ask for. Every moment I’ve shared with him on and off stage was a gift.”

“My heart is broken and I don’t think I’ll ever fully recover from this loss,” he added.

“I love you so much, Pop.”

Eddie Van Halen’s long-term battle with throat cancer was been covered regularly over the past decade, with the late star reportedly undergoing surgery in 2019 due to another bout of the disease.

Our thoughts are with his family during this time.

Check out ‘Eruption’ by Eddie Van Halen:

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