Thursday, March 8, 2012

Sammy Hagar continues to slam the new Van Halen

Sammy Hagar has been making a habit of slamming the new Van Halen album, something the Red Rocker did for months before the record was even out.

Now that he’s heard some of it, Sammy still thinks the band missed the mark.

"I don't listen to much new music unless I hear a new song on the radio, and the last bands that did that to me were the Black Keys and Kings of Leon,” Hagar tells the Boston Phoenix. “When I heard 'Tattoo,' that single — and I saw the video because everybody kept sending it to me like, 'My god, have you seen this?' . . . 'Oh my god, you must be laughing your ass off!'— it wasn't a song that made me run out and buy their record. And so I haven't heard it. I haven't downloaded it, I haven't done anything.”

Hagar didn’t discuss why he’s had a change of plans on this in recent months: he told Rolling Stone last fall, “I'll be the first guy waiting in line at the record store, if I could find one anymore. I'll be really curious [to hear the new VH].”

“I heard another one that was kinda goofy too,” Sammy continues, “and then I heard, on the radio, 'She's the Woman,' and I thought that was kinda cool. That one sounds like what I would expect from Van Halen, a little closer to it. The other stuff didn't sound like what I was expecting, that's for sure."

As for the matter of today's Van Halen playing only songs from the Roth catalog while on tour, Hagar says that it must be hard for Eddie and Alex to have to ignore a gaping section of their career. "The difference between Dave and I in that band, besides all the other million things,” says Sammy, “is that he can't sing any of the Van Hagar-era songs. Maybe he could do 'Finish What Ya Started,' possibly — so that makes it kind of weird for [Alex and Eddie] I think to take 11 years out of that thing."

Hagar’s experiencing a convenient memory lapse here: during his tenure with VH, he would regularly agree to perform only four (4) songs from the entire Roth era (and one of those was a Kinks cover) – the one that made the band a household name before his arrival. In other words, Sammy did his best to ignore a dozen years of VH history himself.

Now that the Hagar-led Chickenfoot are preparing to embark on a spring tour – more than six months after the release of “Chickenfoot III” – he discovered the band has a date in Los Angeles bookended by a pair of Van Halen shows, something that initially had him pissed at the promoters.

"First I said, 'What the f**k are you doing putting us the same time as Van Halen?'" Hagar says now. "It's just gonna cause a needless competition between the fans, and I don't like that. I want the fans to feel like they can love Van Halen and that they can love Chickenfoot totally the same. I don't have any way of competing with those guys; you can't compete with Van Halen. I'm part of that legacy, how could I go out and compete with something I'm part of? I don't look at us like that, but I know some people do. You want to go see Van Halen one night and see us the next and compare us, you want to do that? Roll up your sleeves and come on. I welcome it, because I think this band is smokin'."

Van Van Halen

Van Halen – Unchained
Madison Square Garden – March 1, 2012

See also:

Classic Van Halen featured on In The Studio this week
VIDEO: Meet Eddie Van Halen’s dog
VIDEO: Van Halen rock Philadelphia
Kool & The Gang talks about opening for Van Halen
Van Halen tops the hennemusic Hot 10 for 6th week
VIDEO: Van Halen rock rare Diver Down classic in New York
David Lee Roth: I am Eddie Van Halen’s biggest fan
VIDEO: David Lee Roth’s dog world
Van Halen tops the hennemusic Hot 10 for 5th week
Joe Satriani discusses the new Van Halen album
VIDEO: Van Halen perform Fair Warning classic in Indianapolis
Sammy Hagar: Eddie Van Halen underused bassist Michael Anthony
VIDEO: Van Halen pull out 1984 classic in Detroit
VIDEO: David Lee Roth interviews the Van Halen brothers part 2
VIDEO: Van Halen’s Recreational Director
VIDEO: Van Halen open 2012 tour
Van Halen tops the hennemusic Hot 10 for 4th week
VIDEO: Van Halen – David Lee Roth explains Stay Frosty
Van Halen land #1 Rock Album on Billboard
VIDEO: Multi-cam footage of Van Halen dress rehearsal
Van Halen debuts on Billboard album chart
PHOTOS: Van Halen share pictures of rehearsal show
Van Halen: University student suspended after writing Hot For Teacher essay
VIDEO: Van Halen’s David Lee Roth on romance
Van Halen: New album enters UK charts
Van Halen tops the hennemusic Hot 10 for 3rd week
VIDEO: David Lee Roth explains Van Halen and the legend of the Brown M&M’s
VIDEO: David Lee Roth interviews the Van Halen brothers
Sammy Hagar slams new Van Halen again
VIDEO: Van Halen unplug for You Really Got Me
Sammy Hagar slams new Van Halen single
NBC's Al Roker uncooperative on Van Halen flight to New York
hennemusic: Van Halen leads list of Rockers To Watch in 2012
Van Halen win two hennemusic Rock News Awards
Rock News Artist Of The Year #1: VAN HALEN
Rock News Story Of The Year #1: VAN HALEN
Rock News Story Of The Year #9: VAN HALEN