Van Halen’s David Lee Roth Era Surpasses Sammy Hagar’s, Nuno Bettencourt Says

Extreme guitarist Nuno Bettencourt recently had a conversation with May The Rock Be With You, where he discussed his decision to prepare for a Van Halen tribute and what happened afterwards. He implied that teaming up with the remaining Van Halen members is unlikely:

“I had this f*cking crazy moment that I was like ‘All right, I gotta do some sort of Van Halen tribute.’ Like, I want to put a band together. Of course, it’d be great with Alex and Michael but I know that’s never going to happen. At one point people were saying ‘Hey, I think they’re going to reach out to you to possibly do some sort of thing.’ And I’m like ‘Okay, well, I’m here.’ I doubt that phone’s gonna ring.”

Nuno further explained the steps he took, leading him to compare the Sammy Hagar era with the David Lee Roth era. He also revealed which era he prefers:

“I actually put together a musicians list, I went through every Van Halen album, and I apologise for saying this to anybody that’s gonna get offended but going through the Dave era for me, because Sammy’s a great friend of mine as well, that new era Van Halen is a whole other thing -which by the way I was obsessed with and listened to it- but as a player and as a kid, the Dave era is in my f*cking bloodstream. That’s the difference. I was listening to other stuff where that other sh*t raised me as a kid.”

Bettencourt previously shared what Van Halen means to him. In a June interview, the guitarist expressed his thoughts about people perceiving him as ‘the heir to Eddie’s throne’:

“I was starting to read everywhere that I was like, ‘The heir to the throne’ that Edward left. There is no heir to the throne of Eddie Van Halen. Nobody sits on that throne. Nobody takes that throne.”

In the same interview, he also explained why Eddie should be treated differently as a musician:

“Here’s why it’s different with Eddie: when a great guitar player passes, you just move on to another, right? But in this case, Eddie wasn’t just a ‘guitar player.’ We’re talking about a guy who changed culture and how we play guitar.”

Nuno also mentioned that as a fellow guitarist, he feels responsible to carry on Van Halen’s legacy:

“It’s not about me being ‘the guy’ or some great guitar player, because there are lots of them, right? But I definitely felt that within my genre and my generation, I felt like that after Edward passed, I had at least a little bit of responsibility to set an example.”

You can watch the whole interview below.