Eddie Van Halen has done a little interview with Smithsonian Magazine over his donation of ‘Frank 2,’ a replica of his original Frankie, to the museum. I don’t think Eddie would hand over just any old $25,000 Frankie replica – I wonder if this one is from his personal stash? He used a few of them on the most recent Van Halen tour and I doubt he’d give a guitar with relatively little sentimental value to something as prestigious as the Smithsonian.

Anyway, the interview’s pretty brief and there’s not much new info there, but it’s always cool to hear from EVH. Here’s a little snippet:

What became of Frankenstein 1?
I retired it from regular use. It took so much abuse from endless touring and recording; I wanted to pay some respect to it and let it survive and not let it get destroyed completely. At the same time it became something so well known beyond my wildest dreams that it’s value made it a target for theft and I wanted to protect it. I still play it every now and then. It’s priceless to me.

What did you think of Frankenstein 2, the first time you played it?
I was blown away. We did a blindfold test and it took me a while to figure out which one was the original and which one was Frank 2. The aesthetic accuracy was astounding.

And how did the Replica Frank 2 compare to the original?
From a playability stand point Frank 2 was actually easier to play and fought me less than the original. Frank 1 was something I built around 1975, so it reflected my experience in building guitars at that time

Read more: http://www.smithsonianmag.com/arts-culture/Q-and-A-with-Eddie-Van-Halen.html#ixzz1NJxY5GTH

Van Halen are headlining Soundwave Revolution here in Oz later this year.