Alex Van Halen’s Intuition On Sammy Hagar

How are the band dynamics maintained despite the immense fame surrounding the band members? Everyone’s reaction to fame is different, and this affects the band dynamic, whether you started the band as brothers, friends, or strangers. Songs are a huge part of rock and roll, but is it really rock and roll if you don’t leave with an explosion? Or is it really rock and roll if you simply don’t stir drama after deciding to quit a band you’ve been working with for years? We don’t think so, hence David Lee Roth’s departure from Van Halen was pure rock and roll.

DLR quit Van Halen after the band’s 1984 tour, and the main reason was that he wanted to shine on his own and build a solo career, which is fair enough for a talented musician. However, Diamond Dave left with a blow, as later on, he sued his ex-bandmates and had to fight against them in terms of the business of the band and his work with Van Halen. But when it comes to what the band did after his departure, well, they moved on

They moved on from Roth pretty quickly because the members were passionate about music and were craving to do more. They did not have specific criteria for a new singer, and after meeting Sammy Hagar, they didn’t need to come up with specific instructions, as Hagar fit Van Halen very naturally after the first beat.

Alex Van Halen talked about Hagar’s recruitment in 1991. He said that they were in a tunnel, not knowing what to do with the ‘singer’ situation. It caught some attention that the interviewer talked about David Lee Roth as ‘the other guy’ when asking Alex the question of whether or not Sammy fit the band instantly.

The interviewer asked:

“What were you looking for when you replaced that other guy [David Lee Roth] who was in the band? You were looking for a singer. Was there something you were especially looking for, or did Sammy just fit the bill?”

Alex replied:

He fit the bill. Ed and I were just putzing around the studio; we didn’t know what we really wanted to do. It just seems like every time you’re really at the end of the tunnel is the darkest, and all of a sudden, a light comes in. I don’t know the exact phrase, but yeah.

One night Sammy just came by, and he brought this older feller with him sitting there. I was in one of those moods, and I was literally bouncing off the walls and jumping up and down the console and said, ‘Hey Sam, who’s this old fart?’ Turns out he was his manager, and we started playing. That was it, the first note, bingo.”

He talked about Sammy’s first impression and a funny story of how he called out his manager. But again, it wasn’t very hard to replace the former singer when Sammy showed up. Hagar stayed in Van Halen for nine years after that and quit apparently because of creative differences. The tensions grew, especially between the singer and Eddie Van Halen. Yet, we all know that the band’s relationship with both of the singers has continued throughout the years, and there was no bad blood in the end.