Joe Satriani On Alex Van Halen And David Lee Roth’s ‘Terrifying’ Offer

Joe Satriani recently spoke to Andrew Daly from VWMusic and revealed that he had a conversation with Van Halen icons Alex Van Halen and David Lee Roth about a possible project. The guitarist admitted that the thing Van Halen and Roth wanted from him made him feel terrified.

Eddie Van Halen was fighting cancer until his last days, and unfortunately, the iconic musician passed away because of a stroke on October 6, 2020, at the age of 65. Following his death, his son and bassist Wolf Van Halen announced that Van Halen disbanded because it was impossible to continue without his father. Shortly before this tragic passing, the fans expected another tour or album consisting of the musicians from the famous lineup.

However, it became a dream that never came true after losing Eddie so early. A short time ago, former Metallica bassist Jason Newsted unveiled that he talked and jammed with the drummer and frontman about a Van Halen tribute tour in one of his previous interviews. Then, Newsted added that he chose not to be a part of it because it would be mad to try to honor such a legend, and his statement was on almost every news headline.

Thus, Satriani confirmed that Van Halen and Roth had a plan for shows they discussed, but nothing is certain. The guitarist defined that offer from them; it was terrifying to take place as a guitarist. Satriani thought no one could play like Eddie Van Halen, but he accepted this challenge. He said they reached Sammy Hagar and Michael Anthony without knowing the details about their response.

Satriani highlighted that his main focus was his newly released studio album ‘The Elephants of Mars’ and the upcoming The Elephants of Mars/Shapeshifting combo tour, which he probably would start in September. As a result, it can be said that the possible Van Halen tribute tour won’t begin soon.

About a Van Halen tribute, Satriani said:

“Yeah, it is true. I was contacted by Alex Van Halen and Dave and had some conversations a little less than a year ago about putting together a full tour to celebrate Eddie and the Van Halen legacy. Yeah, it’s terrifying. I mean, I heard myself saying, ‘Yes,’ and then the other part of my brain said, ‘Did you say yes? Are you nuts?’ I remember telling them that any sane guitar player would turn around and start running away as fast as possible because you can’t measure up to Eddie.

It’s like one of those jobs where you try because you know it’s important to you and a labor of love, but still, people are always going say, ‘It doesn’t sound like Eddie’ no matter what you do. I took on the challenge that way, and I did say, ‘Okay, I’ll agree to keep talking about this to see what happens.’ I’m not in the family, and I’ve never worked with Dave before. I’m a guy they called and started the ball rolling.”

He added:

“We were not supposed to talk about it because it may never happen, and obviously, Sammy Hagar and Mike Anthony were contacted, but I don’t know what’s going on behind the scenes there. I can’t say I know what’s going on. I know that Jason Newsted was called at one point, and he was told, like I was, to not talk about it because it may never happen.

So we were all shocked when he went public because he certainly wasn’t supposed to. It’s only caused grief in the family, which is not nice, you know? That’s all I can say about it. I don’t know much more today to tell you the truth.

I know that for the next year and a half, I’m probably on tour starting in September, doing The Elephants of Mars/Shapeshifting combo tour. Whatever comes with this, it’s sometime in the future. I mean, in a way, now that the cats are out of the bag, at least I don’t have to feel like I’m keeping something from people.”

You can listen to the album below.