Former VAN HALEN frontman Sammy Hagar says he is “afraid” to contact Eddie and Alex Van Halen because he doesn’t want them to think that he wants to get back in band.
Hagar, who plays with ex-VAN HALEN bassist Michael Anthony in THE CIRCLE and CHICKENFOOT, hasn’t made music with Eddie or Alex Van Halen since his final tour with VAN HALEN back in 2004.
Speaking to Classic Rock, Hagar said: “I’m afraid if I ever reached out and really tried to contact Ed and Al, they would think that I was trying to get back in the band or I was trying to do a reunion. And I’m not. I am so content with [current band] THE CIRCLE — we play the VAN HALEN songs that I wrote with Ed as good as anybody, but I’m happy to have just five or six VAN HALEN songs in my set. It’s almost like I don’t want to be asked to do it because I’d feel like I had to do it, but I don’t really want to. I’m sorry I don’t.”
VAN HALEN reunited with original singer David Lee Roth in 2007 after a 23-year gap, touring several times and releasing an album called “A Different Kind Of Truth” in 2012.
Anthony was left out of the reunion, replaced by Eddie Van Halen‘s son Wolfgang.
This past April, Hagar revealed that the VAN HALEN camp is frequently dangling reunion offers in front of him and Anthony. The Pulse Of Radio asked him if he’s heard anything from the band recently. “Nothin’ — are you kiddin’?” he said. “It’s, like, every now and then they throw — y’know, management throws — something at me or something at Mike, sayin’. ‘Hey, what are you guys doin’ next summer? Y’know, Ed and Al are talking about maybe doin’ this or maybe doin’ that.’ And I’m goin’, ‘I’m workin’ next summer.’ [Laughs] I mean, they wanna talk to me? Talk to me. Mikey — same thing: ‘He said, ‘Yeah, let me know.’ And then you don’t hear nothin’. So, it looks to me like it’s a rumor. I’m not the one that can honestly say it’s official, but in my world, we’re going out and tourin’ this summer and nobody’s tellin’ us we can’t.”
After Roth left VAN HALEN in 1984, Hagar recorded four studio albums with the band between 1985 and 1995, rejoining briefly in 2004 for a disastrous reunion trek.
Hagar and Eddie Van Halen reportedly haven’t spoken to each other since the end of the 2004 tour. In his autobiography, “Red: My Uncensored Life In Rock”, Hagar slammed Eddie, saying the guitarist was unkempt, hunched over, frighteningly skinny, drinking wine straight out of a bottle, missing part of his tongue (after a cancer scare) and several teeth. He told an interviewer in 2012: “What happened on that reunion tour in ’04 was some of the most miserable, back-stabbing dark crap I’ve ever been involved with my whole life.”
In a 2015 interview with Rolling Stone, Eddie questioned an “embellished” portion of “Red: My Uncensored Life In Rock” that painted Eddie Van Halen as a “very angry drunk” during the group’s 2004 reunion tour.