Wednesday, December 16, 2020

Rock News Artist Of The Year No. 2: VAN HALEN

As part of the 2020 hennemusic Rock News Awards, the daily news site is counting down the Top 10 Rock News stories of the past year.

Finalists for the 11th annual hennemusic Rock News Awards are chosen by readers: the Rock News Story Of The Year is determined by page views, while the Rock News Artist Of The Year is based on the combined total page views of the top 50 hennemusic rock news stories of the past twelve months.

The 2020 hennemusic Rock News Awards winners will be announced on Thursday, December 17.

2020 Rock News Artist Of The Year – Top 10

07 - RUSH
04 - ZZ TOP

Rock News Artist of The Year No. 2 – VAN HALEN

Van Halen’s status in 2019 was shaky at best, with hints and rumors of a possible reunion tour and reports of Eddie Van Halen’s failing health surfacing before David Lee Roth declared the band “was over” as fans knew it.

Roth opened a brief Las Vegas residency run in January before joining KISS on their farewell tour in early February, and eventually postponing his remaining Las Vegas dates due to the pandemic.

Sammy Hagar And The Circle performed an abbreviated cover of Van Halen’s 1986 track, “Good Enough”, in the third installment of their “lockdown sessions” series in April, with Hagar going on to predict the band would be making a comeback at some point soon.

In July, Wolfgang Van Halen shared a brief audio clip as the latest preview to his forthcoming debut album, while Roth told the New York Times that he wasn’t sure if Eddie would recover enough from his health issues to be able to ever tour again.

Original Van Halen bassist Mark Stone – who was in the lineup between 1972-74 – died from cancer on September 26, just days before Wolfgang shared the news that Eddie Van Halen died on October 6 at the age of 65 after his lengthy battle with cancer.

Tributes to the guitar icon were shared by Roth, Alex Van Halen and former members Hagar and Michael Anthony, as well as fellow artists and fans around the world.

News soon broke that Pasadena City Council would discuss plans at a late October meeting for a possible memorial to Eddie, with a resolution being passed to investigate options for some kind of tribute to the late rocker in his adopted hometown.

Roth was a featured guest on CBS Sunday Morning a few weeks after Eddie’s passing, although the session was recorded during the summer and focused on the singer’s current activities; the rocker eventually shared a musical tribute to his late bandmate with the release of “Somewhere Over The Rainbow Bar And Grill”, a song from an unreleased album he recorded with Rob Zombie guitarist John 5 in 2014.

As part of an online series by Sunset Sound Recorders in Los Angeles, an audio engineer confirmed last month that unreleased music recorded by Van Halen exists in the Warner Brothers vaults.

The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame paid tribute to Eddie during its 2020 induction ceremony on November 7, while Wolfgang dedicated his debut single, “Distance”, to his late father.

While promoting the tune with several media outlets, Wolfgang confirmed that a full Van Halen reunion was considered for a farewell tour last year before Eddie’s health issues prevented plans from being fully realized; discussions involved the return of Anthony and the possible involvement of Roth, Hagar and Gary Cherone.

Eddie’s guest spot on a newly-unearthed extended 1996 recording of the Jimi Hendrix classic, “If 6 Was 9”, was issued by keyboardist David Garfield last month in the wake of the guitarist’s passing.

See also:

Search Van Halen at hennemusic
2020 hennemusic Rock News Awards announced
The Rolling Stones sweep the 2019 hennemusic Rock News Awards
AC/DC and Pink Floyd win 2018 hennemusic Rock News Awards
The Eagles sweep the 2017 hennemusic Rock News Awards
AC/DC sweep the 2016 hennemusic Rock News Awards
Van Halen and KISS top the 2015 hennemusic Rock News Awards
Van Halen sweep 2014 hennemusic Rock News Awards