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David Lee Roth and Sammy Hagar Officially Announce Co-Headlining Tour!

By Sefany Jones, Contributing Editor
Wednesday, April 17, 2002 @ 1:36 AM


"Diamond Dave" and the "Red Ro

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Tuesday afternoon, at a press conference at the open-air Skybar in West Hollywood, California, it was confirmed that two legendary singers have two things in common: they both fronted Van Halen once upon a time, and they now will now both share the same stage this summer, in a major co-headlining tour.

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The very charming “Diamond” David Lee Roth (flanked by yellow, sparkly cat-women and a few midgets) and the subtler Sammy “The Red Rocker” Hagar sat down at the press conference in front of a score of cameras and microphones, to officially seal the deal: they WILL co-headline a summer tour together, with their respective bands.

The two vocalists swapped trademark smiles and amiable banter, as they were both obviously excited about their big announcement. If their camaraderie on stage there was any indication of the tour forthcoming, then it will definitely be a summer event not to be missed!

KNAC.COM was on hand to witness this momentous occasion. Although there doesn't seem to be an official tour name just yet, it is mockingly being dubbed the "Sans Halen" tour. Here is a transcription of the conference, followed by the tour dates that have been confirmed so far:

DAVE: Sam, did you ever think you’d be here?
SAMMY: Yes.
DAVE: Actually, Bono called me and said we had to do this for world peace.

SAMMY: First of all, I think about… 5 years ago, when the Van Halen part with me ended, first thing I did was try to contact Dave, and he shot me down, but when he came back, these last few months ago, I think it’s a great idea.
DAVE: Yes, Sam, you did have the idea first, but the timing was wrong, and now the timing is RIGHT! You know you all love a good scandal, and that’s why you’re here today, ladies and gentlemen! Actually, this is about the second time and such, Sam and I have met, and we’re looking forward to a spectacular tour, something that is a little, uh, a little bit bigger than even just music.

[The press begins asking questions]

[A question is asked about why the timing is right]

DAVE: Because it’s completely unexpected. The worst possible thing, I think, in our industry today, is predictability.

[A question is asked about how to decide who’s headlining]

DAVE: We’re gonna flip a blonde in the next city. You have to think of it as two title fights with no under card -- this is a co-headlining tour here, so we’ll flip a coin, and whoever, you know… heads I win, tails, uh… Sam whichever end, then we’ll flip-flop. One will do one night, then the other will top the bill the next night.

[A question is asked if Dave will join Sammy’s band for a little bit, and then will Sammy go out and jam with Dave’s band?]

SAMMY: Not really.
DAVE: This is two headlining acts… two complete headlining shows here.
SAMMY: We’re not going to commingle, unless it just becomes that, it’s not planned -- we don’t know each other well enough for that – (joking) I don’t trust him, let’s put it that way. (laughs)

[A question is asked if they would both be doing Van Halen songs]

DAVE: I’m going to do almost exclusively the Van Halen catalogue… not just do renditions, and not just do, ‘oh, here’s a variation of it’ -- but I have a shit hot band who will serve it large! Large, large, large…
SAMMY: (Joking) And he’s gonna do some of the Van Halen songs actually that I did, too… Dave’s gonna do those as well… (laughs)
DAVE: Dave actually WROTE those songs! (laughs)
SAMMY: I do… from Montrose through Van Halen, through current, and try to squeeze it all in an hour and a half. I’m used to playing for two and a half hours, so, I’m going to squeeze it in to an hour and a half and play what I think is the best of Van Halen. I may do “Running With The Devil” myself! (laughs)
DAVE: Between the two of us, what you have is quintessential Americana, and you couldn’t pick a more appropriate time for that. Whether you ever owned any of the records or the albums, whatever, between the two of us -- what do you think it is, somewhere between 80 or 100 million records before bootlegs were sold? -- whether you’ve owned it or not, you’ve heard Sammy or my voice tearing out of a pickup truck in front of you at the drive way at the local Burger King for how many fucking summers?! The time is appropriate NOW, because we have a whole busload of people out there who have been waiting way too long for something really good to happen with this music, and we’re gonna serve it this summer!

[A question is asked regarding uncomplimentary things said about one other in the past]

SAMMY: I think that was before we met. Now that we’ve met…well, we’ll come up with some better things to say about each other. (laughs) I mean, still, it’s not like Dave & I are old buddies or anything… I mean, honestly, this is a pretty competitive tour, in my book, I want to do -- try my best to do the best show I’ve ever done in my life every night, and I’m sure Dave’s gonna do that times 10, as well, and I think that’s going to make for great entertainment for the fans that come. They’re going to see probably the best of us ever, and like Dave said, with all those hits… and I just can’t imagine walking away disappointed.
DAVE: In terms of what you see up on the deck up there, there’s a rivalry between us -- the audience gets the absolute BEST out of both of us. The rivalry does not extend… any rivalry there may have been -- well certainly… nothing that can’t be cured with a little Cabo Wabo tequila! By the way, some of you may not know this out there, -- I’m the one that smells like Jack Daniels.

[A question is asked about their first meeting]

DAVE: Short and sweet. It was in an office. What we are about here is a spirit. What we’re here is about an attitude. It goes beyond just two guys, it goes beyond a list of songs, it goes beyond the last band that we were in… it’s a state of mind and it’s a point of view. Perhaps it’s a state of mind and a point of view that Van Halen has missed twice – twice.
Sammy and I are like fraternity brothers; we’ve been through the same shitty hazing. We have a lot in common, actually, though I’m sure neither of us are going to admit it until Cleveland. But I think this tour is gonna last way longer than Marilyn Manson and Courtney Love…
SAMMY: Yeah, I think so! Actually, upon our first meeting that Dave and I had, all we discussed was the creative side: how long do you want to play, how much room do you need on stage, what kind of production are we talking about – ‘cause we just try to make it work. All the business side of it and all that… we left it to other people.

[A question is asked about where the tour will kick off]

SAMMY: Cleveland.
DAVE: They’re just starting to put the schedule and everything together, that’s why there was a brief delay… we didn’t know if we were gonna have the dates… now, the first twenty shows are in place, and we’re gonna go everywhere that’ll have us, and some who are still thinking about it!
SAMMY: The question is, where are we going to end the tour? Where is this going to end? That’s the question. How long can we do it? (laughs)

[A question is asked about what the Van Halen brothers think]

DAVE: Well, I’m not sure what the brothers think, and I’m not sure I even really care. I think probably the two biggest words up there on Howdy Doody mountain are, ‘Uh oh!’

[A question is asked about Michael Anthony]

SAMMY: Well, Mike’s been working with me on a side project called Planet US -- that we’re going to do in the fall – so, Mike and I have actually been jamming and playing together, and if he wants to come out and play with me, he’s welcome, and if he wants to come out and play with Dave, he’s welcome. Mike’s a great guy and a great player.
DAVE: Mike’s a neutral man -- he’s Switzerland in this thing. Once this afternoon is over, they’re gonna blame it all on him anyway. (laughs) Of course he’s gonna wind up out here -- he owns the tequila company -- how wrong is that?!

[A question is asked as to the band members for each singer]

DAVE: I have people who are pretty much unknowns. Fellas who come out of, you know, the local club scene and so forth, -- Ray Luzier, James Lomenzo… I gotta good fella [Brian Young] on guitar…
SAMMY: I’ve got the same band I’ve had since I left Van Halen, since ’96… I’ve got Mona [Gnader] on the bass -- the queen of rock -- then we’ve got Vic Johnson on guitar and David Lauser on drums, and Jesse Harms on keyboards. The Waboritas is what they’re called.
DAVE: I have a tattoo of Mona here (Dave points to his shoulder)… I’ll show you later.
SAMMY: Watch out, Dave, Mona’s a badass! Don’t mess with her!

[A question is asked about whether Gary Cherone would join the tour]

DAVE: (Joking) He’s doing the Vagina Monologues.
SAMMY: This isn’t really about what’s leftover from Van Halen, this is really about two guys, that kind of really had a long run with Van Halen, and I think we’re both worth of touring together and making a statement, and that’s why there’s no opening act, you know, and there’s no-- we thought about getting an opening act, you know -- Dick Dale or the Beach Boys or somebody like that to add to the party -- but we’re just gonna do it.
DAVE: You know, the list of songs that are familiar to you is part of the collective consciousness now, you know, when both teams take the field in the series they’re playing classic music that is one or other of our voices here, and like I said, it goes well beyond just what is on that stage -- it’s a state of mind, there is a point of view that is ‘Life lovin’, live large…’ I don’t know… somewhere between what Jimmy Buffet and Limp Bizkit serves up… A Buffet Bizkit!

[A question is asked as to whether they will fit into the scene with the younger bands out there]

DAVE: We don’t. I have no intention of fitting in with anything. We are meters. This is something that is beyond category now. It’s become it’s own genre. It’s become it’s own style. You know you can look at something, and go, ‘Well that’s very rough,’ and, everyone in the room knows what [that] means, they’re just not sure if that’s positive or negative. But anyone [who] imitates Sam, you know right away, you go, ‘He’s doing Sammy Hagar.’ Instantly. Whether you’re a fan of either one of us, or none in the middle, you know it -- instantly. So it’s gone well beyond just a voice or a face or a song.

DAVE: Ladies and gentlemen! All joking aside and nonsense aside for at least four seconds, here. Sam, I am delighted to being doing this with you… (shakes his hand)
SAMMY: Likewise…
DAVE: …This is going to be one hell of a summer! You are all invited…

*****

Tour dates confirmed at press time:

05/29/02 Cuyahoga Falls, OH Blossom Music Center
05/31/02 Clarkston, MI DTE Energy Music Center
06/01/02 Tinley Park, IL Tweeter Center
06/02/02 Noblesville, IN Verizon Wireless Music Center
06/04/02 Cincinnati, OH Riverbend Music Center
06/06/02 Bonner Springs, KS Sandstone Amphitheatre
06/07/02 Maryland Heights, MO UMB Bank Pavilion
06/08/02 East Troy, WI Alpine Valley Music Theatre
06/10/02 Peoria, IL Peoria Civic Center Arena
06/11/02 Columbus, OH Polaris Amphitheater
06/14/02 Selma, TX Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre
06/15/02 Dallas, TX Smirnoff Music Centre
06/16/02 The Woodlands, TX Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion
06/18/02 Albuquerque, NM Journal Pavilion
06/19/02 Englewood, CO Fiddler's Green Amphitheatre
06/21/02 Phoenix, AZ Cricket Pavilion
06/22/02 Devore, CA Glen Helen Blockbuster Pavilion
06/24/02 Universal City, CA Universal Amphitheatre
06/25/02 Fresno, CA Selland Arena
06/27/02 Mountain View, CA Shoreline Amphitheatre
06/29/02 George, WA The Gorge

(Pictures by Sefany Jones and Frank Meyer)

Photos © 2002 KNAC.COM


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