UGLY KID JOE’s WHITFIELD CRANE Remembers The Time EDDIE VAN HALEN Gave Him His Socks Right Off His Feet

During an appearance on the “Life In The Stocks” podcast, UGLY KID JOE singer Whitfield Crane reflected on the time legendary VAN HALEN guitarist Eddie Van Halen gave him a pair of his socks right off his feet. He said (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): “[We were on the road in Europe in 1995, and] the tour was awesome. It was soccer stadiums and it was mainly UGLY KID JOE, VAN HALEN and BON JOVI who was selling the tickets. And sometimes they would have THE PRETENDERS on it, sometimes Slash would be there. It was just a trippy, awesome tour. And we had a record out from 1995, it was called ‘Menace To Sobriety’, and we were that, and we were dangerous and fun. It was right before everything was gonna go bad; it was when it was still good. And we’re out there, and the tour is cool. Eddie Van Halen‘s the greatest. Those guys were so fucking cool. It was great. Ed was sober, but we weren’t. And during like Ed‘s solos — remember, I had posters of this dude on my wall plastered with Eddie Van Halen. And so during the shows, during Eddie‘s ripping leads, Michael Anthony would go like this, ‘Come here,’ be on the bass cab. And I don’t drink whiskey, ’cause it’s not a good idea, but Michael Anthony would be all [chugging it down], and I’d be all, ‘Right on.’ There’s the whole 80,000 people, but Eddie Van Halen would walk and look at you and go, [imitates guitar noodling], and do this rad shit. And I’d be, like, ‘Wow.’ And this was every day. I have no documentation of it — sadly — but it happened, and it was awesome.

“Now BON JOVI had this great woman named Spanky, I believe her name was, and she was the wardrobe gal,” he continued. “So if you could make friends with her, you could get clean clothes. That was my main mission. So I made friends with her, and she was super rad. I’m all, ‘Good. I’ve got some clean clothes.’ ‘Cause that’s the dream on tour. Just so you know, your dream on tour is clean socks, clean clothes and get going. On club tours, like just in normal club things, there’s a thing called a rider. You could get Skittles, you could get beers, you could get bread, you could get vegan food or you could get whatever you want. But one of the things I’ve gotten over the years, ’cause I was told by some of my friends that I consider smart — socks. Socks are an incredible thing to have. Because if you’re just feeling disgusting and you put on a nice pair of clean socks, you feel awesome. You’re, like, ‘All right. This is radical. I’m almost clean.’ No, but I’m serious. Socks are awesome. I like clean socks. Everybody does. Think about it…”

Crane added: “[Jon] Bon Jovi is a fucking super-cool dude. He took us on this great tour. We’re not gonna be able to do soccer stadiums [on our own]. Jesus Christ. It was awesome. But anyway, on the rider, I put ‘socks’. And guess what wasn’t on the rider when we got backstage. Socks. And I was, like, ‘Fuck, man. No socks.’ It’s not that big an ask. We’re not asking for like some crazy thing. We want socks. Nobody really wants socks but me, by the way. No one cares about it. They’re all, ‘Shut up with your sock shit.’ I’m, like, ‘These motherfuckers should give us socks.’ And everybody was, like, ‘Shut up.’ I’m all ‘socks, socks, socks.’ It’s true. I was insane. Anyway, on that tour, we played [Germany’s] Rock Am Ring and Rock Im Park [festivals], which there was a bunch of bands on those shows, but all the bands that we were friends with were there — VAN HALEN was there, BON JOVI was there, whatever. And Eddie Van Halen would come hang out, and his brother would come hang out, and we would just kind of hang out. We’re hanging out backstage, and I’m still whinging about socks. Eddie sits next to me. He has his guitar and he’s dicking around his guitar. He’s, like, ‘How’s it going, guys?’ And I’m all… No one wants to hear me say socks one more time, but I’m gonna fucking be relentless. And I’m all, ‘Fucking Bon Jovi.’ And Eddie‘s, like, ‘What happened? What did he do?’ And I’m, like, ‘He won’t give me socks.’ And Ed goes, ‘What? He won’t give you socks?’ ‘No, man. I asked on the rider. Guess what, Ed?’ He said, ‘What?’ I’m, like, ‘No socks.’ And he goes, ‘Fuck that’, and jumps up on the table, takes off his shoes, pulls his socks off and gives me his socks. And I proceed to take my shoes off, put on Eddie Van Halen‘s socks, strap in and go play a rock show.”

As previously reported, UGLY KID JOE will support SCORPIONS on the legendary German band’s 2024 Las Vegas residency. Promoted by Live Nation and Caesars Entertainment, “Scorpions – Love At First Sting Las Vegas” kicks off on Thursday, April 11, 2024 at Bakkt Theater at Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino.

This past spring, UGLY KID JOE completed its first U.S. tour in 27 years.

UGLY KID JOE is continuing to tour in support of its latest studio album, “Rad Wings Of Destiny”, which came out in October 2022.

“Rad Wings Of Destiny” saw UGLY KID JOE re-teaming producer Mark Dodson who was behind the desk for the band’s debut album, “America’s Least Wanted”, which celebrated its 30th anniversary last year.

After a 15-year hiatus, UGLY KID JOE reformed in 2012 and has toured extensively throughout Europe and the rest of the world.

The band released the EP “Stairway To Hell” in 2012 and the full-length “Uglier Than They Used Ta Be” in 2015.

Image courtesy of UGLY KID JOE‘s YouTube channel


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