As part of the 2016 hennemusic Rock News Awards, the site is counting down the Top 10 Rock News Artists of the year.
Finalists for the 7th annual hennemusic Rock News Awards are chosen by readers: winners are determined by the combined total page views of the top 50 hennemusic rock news stories of the past twelve months.
The 2016 hennemusic Rock News Awards winners will be announced on Thursday, December 22.
2016 Rock News Artist Of The Year – Top 10
10 – SAMMY HAGAR
09 – DAVID LEE ROTH
08 – THE EAGLES
07 – RAINBOW
06 – LED ZEPPELIN
05 – THE ROLLING STONES
04 – BLACK SABBATH
03 – GUNS N ROSES
Rock News Artist of The Year No. 2 – VAN HALEN
Van Halen were on hiatus throughout 2016 following a North American tour last summer in support of “Tokyo Dome Live In Concert.”
Interest in a reunion of the band’s classic lineup remains high, as witnessed by headlines in January that led former Van Halen bassist Michael Anthony to address rumors that he may be reuniting with his old band.
In late January, Sammy Hagar tweeted a message to former bandmate Eddie Van Halen on the occasion of his 61st birthday, quite likely representing the first contact between the two since they split at the end of a 2004 Van Halen reunion tour.
In early February, Van Halen’s 1978 classic, “Runnin’ With The Devil”, provided the soundtrack to a Super Bowl 50 commercial for car maker Acura that featured an isolated vocal track of singer David Lee Roth.
In sync with the Super Bowl event, Roth launched a new website and social media outlets after mysteriously being offline for the past year; the same month, the rocker began season 3 of his online series The Roth Show.
An early episode saw Roth issue a new acoustic blues song, “Ain’t No Christmas”, whose lyrics had some fans speculating that the tune sounded like it could represent the singer’s farewell to his days in Van Halen. Roth’s management initially shrugged it off, but the rocker offered a direct response, saying: “On second thought, if all work is autobiographic, maybe this song is about Van Halen...”
In a March interview with Rolling Stone, Hagar reflected on his Van Halen debut, 1986’s “5150”, as it marked its 30th anniversary.
Roth opened up about the band’s future on an episode of his online series in May, declaring his sense that Van Halen will regroup to record and tour once again, although no timetable seemed to be in place.
Eddie Van Halen revealed in June that he got out of his latest speeding ticket with the help of an unknown police captain.
“The patrol guy who gave me the ticket, his captain voided it,” explained the guitar icon. “He said, ‘You don’t give Eddie Van Halen a ticket,’ and I had a letter to prove it.”
In August, Hagar offered what may well be his first-ever public apology to Van Halen during an appearance on an episode of “Oprah: Where Are They Now?”
Hagar has repeatedly slammed the band since his 2004 departure, but the singer claimed he found himself in a new place following the late 2015/early 2016 deaths of fellow rockers Scott Weiland, Lemmy, David Bowie and Glenn Frey.
Roth took to his blog in late September to ask for the public’s help in identifying a phone stalker that had been harassing him for some time. The rocker has been noticeably quiet online since October, with no new updates to his website or social media accounts in recent months.
Eddie was among the artists in October who expressed their continued support of the Mr. Holland’s Opus Foundation, a non-profit organization that supports music education in public schools across the United States.
“Can you imagine a world without music? It’s a must. It has to be taught,” said Van Halen in a new video as the Foundation received a National Music Education Award at the Americans For The Arts gala in New York. “I wanted to give back to the community, and especially kids in need who want an instrument but didn’t have the opportunity I had.”
Flying under the media radar this past year has been Wolfgang Van Halen, who spent 2016 in the studio recording his debut solo album; the bassist regularly shares images from the sessions via his social media outlets. No further details, including a timetable for the project’s release, have been revealed to date.
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