News Segment


March 18, 2004

NEW YORK (Billboard) – Sammy Hagar is growing his Mexico-based Cabo Wabo Cantina into a franchise.

The rock artist and one-time Van Halen lead singer will open the first U.S. version of the restaurant/nightclub at Lake Tahoe’s Harveys Resort Casino.

For the opening weekend, April 30-May 2, Hagar will perform several shows across the street from Harveys at Harrah’s Lake Tahoe’s South Shore Room (both venues are owned by Harrah’s Entertainment). The first two nights will feature the artist with his band, the Waboritas. The final night is billed as “Sammy Hagar & Friends.”

The opening weekend will be celebrated with a “Cinco de Cabo” town-wide celebration May 1-2.

Hagar and his former Van Halen bandmates opened the original Cabo Wabo Cantina in 1990 in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. The venue hosts an annual Hagar birthday celebration that typically includes concerts and various parties. The name has also been applied to a premium tequila brand. More information can be found on Hagar’s official Web site (

“Cabo Wabo is a lifestyle,” Hagar said in a statement. “Something that requires only a willingness to enjoy your life and embrace all that makes you happy. That’s the reason the Cantina was created.”

Hagar replaced David Lee Roth in Van Halen in 1985, and recorded and toured with the group through 1996. Since then he has released several albums backed by the Waboritas, the most recent being the 2003 Silverline release, “Live – Hallelujah.”

In addition to regular performances with the Waboritas, Hagar was among the artists taking part in “Toby Keith’s Shock ‘N Y’all Super Bowl Party,” which aired live on CMT in late January. Rumors have also persisted in recent months that Hagar would be back in front of Van Halen for a summer tour, although no official confirmation has been offered.

Barry Jeckell courtesy of Billboard