Sammy Hagar Does Not Know What David Lee Roth's Problem With Him Is

By Andrew Magnotta @AndrewMagnotta

April 12, 2019

Sammy Hagar maintains he has no desire to again rejoin Van Halen, but it would be nice to feel like his former band mates don't hate his guts.

As much as the singer would love to bury the hatchet between himself and Eddie and Alex Van Halen, at least he remembers the origins of the longstanding grudge. What he's less clear on is why he and original Van Halen front man David Lee Roth can't get along.

Hagar told Howard Stern recently that if he and Roth have a problem, he's not sure why.

"I gotta get something straight about Dave," Hagar said. "I actually like the guy; he doesn't like me. But he's entertaining! What a goofball! He entertains me. When I see him, I go, 'Look at this guy! Now look at him! Look what he's doing!' It's entertaining."

In years past, Hagar said he thought the best way for Van Halen to ride out into the sunset would be with himself, Roth and bassist Michael Anthony back in the band, touring together, embracing Van Halen's two most successful eras.

Hagar even invited Roth to take part in his High Tide Beach Party & Car Show last October. But Roth never responded.

The cold shoulder is something Van Halen has perfected over the years. Hagar says he sends the Van Halen brothers well wishes each year on their respective birthdays, but has never once received a response. He also says that Van Halen's management has contacted himself and/or Anthony several times over the years — including last fall with Anthony — to gauge interest in a Van Halen reunion. But follow-up is rare.

Hagar hasn't spoken to anyone in Van Halen since 'The Summer Tour 2004.' When the tour ended, all four band members went their separate ways, with Hagar and Anthony reconnecting afterwards.

Even on the 'Song for Song, the Heavyweight Champs of Rock and Roll' co-headlining tour featuring Hagar and Roth (and Anthony on some dates) in 2002, interaction between Hagar and Roth was rare. Hagar and Anthony recall begging Roth to do a duet with Hagar, to show the audience it was a friendly endeavor but Roth wouldn't bite.

"Our guys were pounding on his dressing room door backstage going, 'C'mon, Dave! C'mon, Dave!' Nothing," Anthony recalled.

When Stern suggested Roth might have been insecure about his voice, Hagar differed, noting Roth's greatest talent is his showmanship.

"Dave could go out there and entertain an audience a little bit better than I can," Hagar noted. "I mean, if he wanted to steal the show — if we were standing there — he could have stolen the show. I would've sang, he could've danced, you know?"

Photo: Getty Images

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