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SweetLeaf95
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 05, 2018 8:34 am 
 

So, I think it's time that this thread is born. I saw that there was a "Sammy Hagar" thread once, but it didn't seem to go anywhere. I think Van Halen and its associates are well respected enough in the metal community to warrant its own thread. That said, I have a few questions.

1. The obvious: Who was the best Van Halen frontman and why? What do you like/dislike about them?

2. Who had a better SOLO career... Hagar or Roth? This one I'm mega torn on, honestly.

3. Favorite album by any associated band? (I guess we should count Extreme, since Gary Cherone sang on one album).

Anything else anyone wants to add or discuss, I absolutely love talking about these bands!

To answer my own questions, I borderline worship David Lee Roth, and have to probably go with him as far as frontman and solo career. However, I still think Sammy Hagar is a better singer in general and has a better voice. He just doesn't have the magic/charisma in his delivery, or at least not as much. Still love all of his stuff as well. I also think Montrose was a better album than any of his solo albums. The debut Van Halen record is (pretty obviously) my favorite.
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CoconutBackwards
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 05, 2018 10:58 am 
 

I was a HUGE fan in my teens of both eras of Van Halen.

1. I guess I would pick Hagar as my favorite. I was obsessed with the 5150 album more than any other single album.

2. I don't have an answer to this. I'm not much of a fan of either of their solo work.

3. 5150 is my favorite album by any iteration.
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Last edited by CoconutBackwards on Wed Sep 05, 2018 11:16 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Zdan
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 05, 2018 11:06 am 
 

My answers:

1. Hagar was leaps and bounds above Roth a singer. That said Roth fit the early mold of the band much better than Hagar and could be considered a better frontman for Van Halen. I vastly prefer the Roth era musically so I gotta go with him but it is a realy close call.

2. Hagar hand down. Better albums, better tunes (Heavy Metal! Eagles Fly!), more consistent output.

3. I would say...Extreme. Absolutely amazing band on their original albums and Cherone can sing his ass off.

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GTog
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 05, 2018 11:40 am 
 

Van Halen never would have been Van Halen without their over-the-top sorta silly-flashy frontman David Lee Roth. That's what the LA scene required in the 70s. They couldn't have done it with a regular rock n' roll guy, which is what Hagar is. So from that angle, DLR will always be number one for me.

You gotta remember though, VH was always Eddie's band. People that blamed their musical shift in the late 80s on Hagar were delusional.
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Acrobat
Eric Olthwaite

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 05, 2018 12:14 pm 
 

Best associated album is certainly Montrose’s debut. It even rivals Van Halen’s debut for quality.,
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Zdan
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 05, 2018 12:24 pm 
 

Acrobat wrote:
Best associated album is certainly Montrose’s debut. It even rivals Van Halen’s debut for quality.,


As an album? Yeah. As a whole band my hat goes to Extreme.

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SweetLeaf95
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 05, 2018 1:30 pm 
 

GTog wrote:
You gotta remember though, VH was always Eddie's band. People that blamed their musical shift in the late 80s on Hagar were delusional.


I'm glad that others realize this. It was more of a "right place right time" for Hagar.

Zdan wrote:
My answers:

1. Hagar was leaps and bounds above Roth a singer. That said Roth fit the early mold of the band much better than Hagar and could be considered a better frontman for Van Halen. I vastly prefer the Roth era musically so I gotta go with him but it is a realy close call.

2. Hagar hand down. Better albums, better tunes (Heavy Metal! Eagles Fly!), more consistent output.

3. I would say...Extreme. Absolutely amazing band on their original albums and Cherone can sing his ass off.


1. I pretty much agree to this. It's like the Sabbath argument. Dio was a far better singer than Ozzy, but Ozzy fit the mold of early Sabbath.
2. I'm still SUPER close with this. I think the first two Roth albums (and the EP of covers) were better than anything Hagar put out, but Hagar had a better career and more albums that were good.
3. I love that you picked Extreme. Seeing that we're at a social platform where most make fun of this type of music, I'm really happy to see someone really appreciate it.
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SweetLeaf95
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 05, 2018 1:32 pm 
 

Zdan, how did you feel about Van Halen III, with this in mind?
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Zdan
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 05, 2018 2:51 pm 
 

As far as the first point goes - it is basically the Sabbath argument. Early Sabbath was perfect for Ozzy's voice but both Dio and Martin were FAR better singers. With Van Halen you had have the wild party guy that just screamed debauchery. Roth was that guy and his tone and delivery fit early Van Halen totally.

As far as solo Roth - I got what those albums great but Hagar had consistency and lots of good albums to choose from. Some of them are pretty underrated too.

And Extreme deserves high praise. There were no ordinary "glam" band. Sure Nuno could shred but they provided amazing songcraft and could go into funk, hard rock, balladry, even prog rock touches and it all sounded great. Their Queen medley at the tribute show to Freddie is AMAZING and a testament to how great a band they were.

Van Halen III - that is a problematic album. Cherone can sing like the best of them but Eddie just did not give him any material to work with. Gone were the Van Halen charm or the outright hooky pop sensibility of Hagar-era albums. That albums is pretty much a lot of nothing. No substance to it. That said none of it is Cherone's fault. As GTog said upthread it was always Eddie's band and he is responsible for the musical direction.


Last edited by Zdan on Wed Sep 05, 2018 3:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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SweetLeaf95
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 05, 2018 3:36 pm 
 

I'm totally on board with pretty much everything you just said. I will say this, "One I Want" is a killer song! Other than that, I've got zero interest in VHIII.
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Luvers666
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 05, 2018 8:30 pm 
 

SweetLeaf95 wrote:
1. The obvious: Who was the best Van Halen frontman and why? What do you like/dislike about them?
Interesting way of asking this question. Van Halen will always be identified by their inaugural lineup - for good reason - so Roth would be the better "Van Halen frontman" simply because he was an integral part of their identity. Who is the better frontman overall though? Sammy Hagar without question. First, he is a musician, meaning he can fatten the sound and instantly elevates the caliber of whatever musical unit he is fronting. Second, he is no slouch in the vocal department. He can hit a lot of the same notes Roth can and still had Michael Anthony's incredible harmonizing abilities to back him up. He is a competent vocalist who is significantly more dimensional that makes it look effortless even well into his 60's. What has Roth been up to lately?
SweetLeaf95 wrote:
2. Who had a better SOLO career... Hagar or Roth? This one I'm mega torn on, honestly.
Sammy Hagar, without question. Roth had two good albums in his solo career - Eat 'Em & Smile and Skyscraper - mostly on the strength of it being a Supergroup of extraordinaire musicians. Sammy has Nine on a Ten Scale, Street Machine, VOA, the masterpieces Standing Hampton and All Night Long.
SweetLeaf95 wrote:
3. Favorite album by any associated band?
Montrose, self-titled debut.
SweetLeaf95 wrote:
Anything else anyone wants to add or discuss, I absolutely love talking about these bands!
It may seem like I am partial to Hagar but I love the original lineup. I was introduced to VH by their debut not long before VH II was released. I was not as blown away by Eddie's guitar playing - though I of course thought it was awesome - because I had heard a few play that style before him. By 1979 any rock band I knew of was because of my brother, but Van Halen was one of a couple I discovered on my own and were much easier to find than the other artists.

As a result I was a huge fan by the time Fair Warning hit the shelves, owned the first three, and fell into a group of older guys who got me into seeing them. A few months after getting Fair Warning I saw them on the supporting tour, and remains both my favorite concert and album of theirs. Saw them the following year, almost to the day, on the tour for Diver Down and it was somewhat of a letdown, despite more songs. The worst time seeing them however was for the 1984 album. It was hyped beyond belief, the tickets were a bit much, passes even more, travel was ridiculous and the show was a bore, except for the worst thing possible. Roth was not himself, appeared to be sloshed and butchered both On Fire and Jamie's Crying. I, personally, felt disrespected.

How did Hagar fare in concert? Saw them in Tampa during the Monsters of Rock tour and it was such a superior concert that I ended up seeing em again five months later, yet another kick ass show. I believe the shows were great because the album, OU812, was a great release. I personally found the next album, FUCK, the best with Hagar though. Of the two shows seen during the supporting tour, the first was on my 24th birthday. Never had a bad show with Hagar.
SweetLeaf95 wrote:
To answer my own questions, I borderline worship David Lee Roth, and have to probably go with him as far as frontman and solo career. However, I still think Sammy Hagar is a better singer in general and has a better voice. He just doesn't have the magic/charisma in his delivery, or at least not as much. Still love all of his stuff as well. I also think Montrose was a better album than any of his solo albums. The debut Van Halen record is (pretty obviously) my favorite.
Fair Warning is my favorite of Van Halen, of the Hagar era it would be FUCK. Sammy solo would be All Night Long, Roth solo would be Eat 'Em & Smile. Montrose was awesome for two albums, shame Ronnie could never get the recognition, he was very much ahead of his time. Paper Money is good but the self-titled debut is a landmark release, to me anyway, and its best song is Space Station #5. A classic that demonstrated every strength of the short lived band and for those who claim Sammy Hagar lacks stage charisma must have not ever seen him live.

Even though I prefer the All Night Long version of Bad Motor Scooter - Find it to be the best version overall - this version here demonstrates all that I have written. Like seriously, the man just bleeds energy, charisma and a spectacular voice.
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SweetLeaf95
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 05, 2018 9:48 pm 
 

Damn dude, good stuff! You could write a book from your experience with this band!
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Oxenkiller
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2018 8:52 pm 
 

I liked Van Halen better with Roth than with Sammy, but I like Sammy's solo stuff better than Roth's, if that makes sense. David Lee Roth's solo stuff was too, well, cheezy for my tastes, despite having a couple great musicians involved.

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SweetLeaf95
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2018 8:37 am 
 

That's pretty much the popular opinion, but I love the cheesiness of it. Plus, his covers are absolutely banger!
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Lord_Jotun
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2018 10:08 am 
 

Oxenkiller wrote:
I liked Van Halen better with Roth than with Sammy, but I like Sammy's solo stuff better than Roth's, if that makes sense.


It does, it works that way for me as well. Love Skyscraper, but Hagar was more consistent in the long run.

GTog wrote:
You gotta remember though, VH was always Eddie's band. People that blamed their musical shift in the late 80s on Hagar were delusional.


This.

As for the "friends and relatives" pick, I'll be boring and predictable and join the Montrose s/t worshippers. That record is ridiculously great.
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SweetLeaf95
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2018 10:13 am 
 

Lord_Jotun wrote:
It does, it works that way for me as well. Love Skyscraper


Skyscraper is definitely my favorite Roth solo record. Does anyone else love the Crazy From The Heat EP? I think it's so damn fun!
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Lord_Jotun
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 08, 2018 9:42 am 
 

It is. Hell, I won't say no to Eat 'em and Smile either; nothing wrong with big dumb fun.
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SweetLeaf95
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 08, 2018 9:51 am 
 

Couldn't have said that better myself.
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TrooperEd
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 09, 2018 10:16 am 
 

Sammy Hagar is one of those entities in hard rock that just never appealed to me. Maybe if I grew up in the 80s my opinion would be different, but I didn't. That said, I will give him a few deserved concessions:

1) He seems like a really good guy, at the very least helping Michael Anthony pay his bills because the Van Halen brothers hate him for some bizarre reason.

2) He is a better singer and better musician than Roth.

However, better musicianship doesn't always mean better quality. And yes, David Lee Roth is the better frontman. A frontman's job is to keep the crowd excited, and if your caliber of doing that is at a high enough level your singing ability becomes irrelevant. Nobody would dare put Paul Baloff anywhere near a top 100 metal vocalists list, but frontmen? Honestly he ought to go in the top 5 for his edgy, almost anti-capitalist contributions to the "death to false metal" credo. Plus Van Halen just got way to soft with Hagar. Granted the argument that they were starting to go in that direction with 1984 does hold water, but I've never heard anyone say 5150 has anything like Girl Gone Bad, House of Pain or Hot For Teacher. I'll admit, Dreams is a guilty pleasure, and I'll agree with Martin Popoff that Why Can't This Be Love was a great tune waiting for Dave to turn it legendary. Solo careers? I've listened to a couple of Roth songs which were fun but they weren't compelling enough for me to buy EEAS or anything else. Everyone tells me Montrose is worth checking out, but they're one of those backburner bands for me.

Another thing I didn't care for regarding Hagar was the fact that when it came to live sets, almost immediately they were phasing out Roth classics in favor of Hagar's solo songs, which had no place on a VH set whatsoever. Can you imagine if Black Sabbath on the Heaven & Hell tour phased out Children of the Grave and War Pigs for Man On The Silver Mountain and Stargazer? Great songs, but whatever hatred there was for Dio by Ozzy fans, you'd have cube it to get an accurate reading if they pulled that stunt. Phasing out old era songs for new era stuff is fine as that era's catalog accumulates, but Van Halen really shot themselves in the foot with that move.
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Eric Olthwaite

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PostPosted: Sun Sep 09, 2018 10:31 am 
 

What were Baloff's anti-capitalist contributions? He wore a hammer and sickle jumper, right?

I dunno, just listen to the first Montrose album... Hagar is fucking great on that one.
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Lord_Jotun
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 09, 2018 11:09 am 
 

I'd forgotten Sammy had also helped Michael Anthony; major points for him for that. The way the guy got shitcanned to make way for Eddie's brat left a sour taste in my mouth, even though A Different Kind of Truth was a surprisingly good effort.
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TrooperEd
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 09, 2018 11:19 am 
 

Acrobat wrote:
What were Baloff's anti-capitalist contributions? He wore a hammer and sickle jumper, right?


I meant more by threatening the people in the crowd with death. Any idiot band can stand on stage and "promise" what they won't do, but it's another to antagonize the paying customer for even so much as looking like glam. Can you imagine anyone doing that today? If there was a Paul Baloff like front man today threatening emos or screamos or hipsters in the crowd he'd be a lawsuit magnet.

And A Different Kind of Truth was fucking awesome. Ten times better than it had any right to be.
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Zdan
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 09, 2018 1:40 pm 
 

A Different Kind of Truth was mainly old demos and unreleased songs - this may explain its quality.

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SweetLeaf95
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 09, 2018 2:35 pm 
 

"Stay Frosty" is one of my favorites, and it's off of that album.
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Ace_Rimmer
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 10, 2018 12:13 pm 
 

Love DLR era Van Halen but can't stand Hagar era at all. Lost the attitude IMO, the swagger. I think the only thing I like Hagar in was a few Montrose tunes, outside that I find him to be mediocre at best. I live in Sammy land, aka Saint Louis, but never did like him.

As for solo, the first few DLR releases were OK, but the magic was him and Eddie in Van Halen.

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SweetLeaf95
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 20, 2018 2:42 pm 
 

I mean I do think For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge has tons of attitude. It definitely fled for a while during the first two Hagar fronted Van Halen records.
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TrooperEd
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 20, 2018 9:44 pm 
 

SweetLeaf95 wrote:
"Stay Frosty" is one of my favorites, and it's off of that album.



Good tune, but I always found it to be a bit of an Ice Cream Man clone. Nothing entirely wrong with that, I mean Some Heads Are Gonna Roll is a Green Manilishi clone (which is kind of ironic considering neither song was written by Priest).
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StainedClass95
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 22, 2018 10:52 pm 
 

^ I would not have thought to compare those two songs. They are similar, musically, but they just feel so different in the context of Hell Bent and Defenders.

Maybe I should give some of these albums discussed here a shot. I really enjoy the 1st Montrose album, but I cannot stand EVH's guitar playing, so I have not explored much of Van Halen's related acts, but the DLR and Hagar solo albums might have something for me.

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SweetLeaf95
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 25, 2018 1:02 pm 
 

I always knew it was somewhat an Ice Cream Man clone, but that's why I like it so much.
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