Iconic guitarist Eddie Van Halen is gearing up to kick off their North American tour, promoting the tour in an interview with Billboard magazine.
Eddie bashed bandmate David Lee Roth saying “he does not want to be my friend”, but really had harsh words for his former bassist Michael Anthony. Sammy Hagar took offense and posted a video defending Anthony.
The North American tour will include 38 shows with his brother Alex, son Wolfgang, and frontman David Lee Roth.
Eddie said of their lead singer, “He does not want to be my friend. Roth’s perception of himself is different than who he is in reality. We’re not in our 20s anymore. We’re in our 60s. Act like you’re 60. I stopped coloring my hair, because I know I’m not going to be young again.”
He continued to bash his bandmate, adding, “It’s hard, because there are four people in this band, and three of us like rock ’n’ roll. And one of us likes dance music. And that used to kind of work, but now Dave doesn’t want to come to the table.”
Billboard asked why Eddie would work with someone he doesn’t like or get along with at all.
He replied, “I think it’s now built into people’s DNA, that it just won’t be Van Halen if it’s not Roth’s voice. You make music for people. Otherwise, just play in your closet. And how do you reach the most people? By giving them the band that they know. To do it any other way would be selfish.”
Eddie claims, “I had to show him how to play”.
He said of Anthony’s voice, “He’s not a singer. He just has a range from hell. I have more soul as a singer than he does. And you know, people always talk about Mike’s voice on Van Halen songs, but that’s a blend of Mike’s voice and my voice. It’s not just him.
“Every note Mike ever played, I had to show him how to play…Before we’d go on tour, he’d come over with a video camera and I’d have to show him how to play all the parts”.
Eddie also touched on Roth’s replacement singer in the 80s, Sammy Hagar.
You might recall that Sammy Hagar depicted Van Halen as an isolated, violent drunk in his 2011 autobiography.
Van Halen said, “That’s him painting a picture of something that never happened”.
Sammy Hagar got wind of Eddie’s Billboard interview and called Eddie “a liar”.
Sammy was more angry about the comments made about former bassist, Michaael Anthony.
Hagar responded with a two-minute video posted to Facebook.
He said, “It’s really irritating to see them go after Mikey. Mikey didn’t do anything — ever — to Van Halen,” Hagar said. “Mikey was the most loyal guy in the band. He was the first guy there at rehearsal, the last guy to leave…. [He was] a hundred percent dedicated; never did anything to hurt those guys. And they try to hurt him again, and again, and again.”
He continued, “For Eddie to say he had to show [Michael] what to play and had to teach him all those songs, that is the biggest line of bullshit I’ve ever heard in my life. I was in that band for eleven years, there was never a video camera involved of Eddie showing him what to play…. I don’t know why they go after him like that.”
Hagar currently plays with Anthony in The Circle, which also features drummer Jason Bonham and guitarist Vic Johnson.
Sammy finished his rant by saying, “Michael Anthony is a bad mother—-er. F— you, Eddie Van Halen, for saying that about Mikey. You’re a liar.”
Van Halen’s 2015 tour kicks off July 5 in Seattle.
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