Should music prodigy Billie Eilish be ashamed for not knowing who Van Halen is?
That’s the debate Twitter has been locked in on Monday — nearly a week after the Grammy nominee made it clear she has never heard of your dad’s favorite hard rock band.
It all began when the 17-year-old pop star appeared on Jimmy Kimmel Live last week and was quizzed on her knowledge of ‘80s pop culture. While she appeared to know who Madonna was, she was completely lost when Jimmy Kimmel brought up the Panama band, who have been in the Rock And Roll Hall of Fame since 2007.
When Kimmel asked her to “name a Van Halen,” Billie’s response was:
Billie Eilish didn't know who Van Halen was, I'm sobbing. pic.twitter.com/tX6xrs7cIE
— Mack (@_Kenziepuff) November 29, 2019
Soon, almost every Twitter user over the age of 30’s head exploded, with some arguing musicians of any age should know their music history.
“Billie Eilish doesn’t know who Van Halen is. Get off my lawn!”
“I know u guys think that this is ok and I get it but…cmon girl it’s VAN HALEN.”
“My take: you should definitely know who Van Halen is even if you’re 17.”
Others defended the Bad Guy singer, arguing that Billie wasn’t even born the last time Van Halen had a real hit (which was 1995’s Can’t Stop Lovin’ You, for you Gen Z-ers, btw).
One self-proclaimed Van Halen “superfan” cried:
“I say this as a superfan: Van Halen has given Billie Eilish no reason to know who they are. They’ve done very little during her lifetime… Don’t complain about other people’s musical experience being different. Instead, share — give people a reason to love what you love.”
Eventually, other bands Eilish may or may not know about added their two cents, including seminal ‘90s pop-rock band Smash Mouth:
— Smash Mouth (@smashmouth) December 2, 2019
If that didn’t put the debate to rest, one of Van Halen’s members took to Twitter to exonerate the possibly uneducated pop star.
Wolfgang Van Halen — son of guitar titan Eddie Van Halen, who replaced founding bassist Michael Anthony in 2006 when he was just 15 — told his followers to give Billie a break. He wrote:
“If you haven’t heard of @billieeilish, go check her out. She’s cool. If you haven’t heard of @VanHalen, go check them out. They’re cool too. Music is supposed to bring us together, not divide us. Listen to what you want and don’t shame others for not knowing what you like.”
What he said!
Do U think Billie should know better? Does she have you feeling old rn?? Share your thoughts in the comments (below)!