Unearthed 1964 Photo: “The Broken Combs” Band, Featuring Eddie and Alex Van Halen

The Broken Combs, 1964: Eddie Van Halen, Brian Hill, Alex Van Halen, Kevan Hill.

The historic photo above is one of the oldest Van Halen photos ever. Here’s the story…

In 1964, fourteen years before Van Halen’s first album, Eddie and Alex Van Halen were young kids (age 9 & 11) who had immigrated to the United States just two short years earlier. Eddie Van Halen met fellow student Kevan Hill in their early morning music class at Hamilton Elementary School on Del Mar Avenue in Pasadena, California. Ed was advanced on the violin and Kevan played the cello. The Van Halen brothers became fast friends with the Hill Brothers and formed “The Broken Combs” later that year, during the time of the Beatles and the British Invasion.

The Broken Combs lasted for two years and was Eddie and Alex’s first band. Alex on saxophone (taking after his father, Jan), Eddie on piano, Brian Hill on drums, Kevan Hill on an Emenee-brand plastic guitar, and Don Ferris on second sax. They wrote some original tunes, such as “Rumpus” and “Boogie Booger”, and they would perform at the school lunchroom.

Dear readers, if you liked this photo, there’s more to come! The Van Halen News Desk has an interview with Kevan Hill from the Broken Combs, which we’ll feature sometime in the future. And we’ve also got more photos from this time period, none of which have ever been published or circulated on the internet. So stay tuned to VHND.com!