News Segment


March 23, 2004

NEW YORK (Billboard) – The long-rumored Van Halen summer tour is finally getting off the ground.

The group’s official Web site ( reports that Van Halen will play shows on dates yet to be announced in Detroit; East Rutherford, N.J.; Greensboro, N.C.; Hershey, Pa.; Kansas City, Mo.; Las Vegas; Philadelphia; St. Louis; St. Paul, Minn.; Wilkes-Barre, Pa.; and Worcester, Mass.

There has also yet to be a formal announcement as to who will fill the group’s lead singer slot, although it appears Sammy Hagar has won back the job. Hagar replaced original vocalist David Lee Roth in 1985 and remained in Van Halen until 1996. Roth returned to the fold for a brief, disastrous stint that year to record two new songs for a greatest hits album, but did not collaborate with the band further.

Former Extreme frontman Gary Cherone took over lead vocal duties for the 1998 flop “Van Halen III” and a tour later that year, the band’s most recent to date. By mutual consent, he left the band shortly afterwards. In a bizarre twist, Roth and Hagar embarked on co-headlining U.S. tour in 2002.

As a band, Van Halen is surrounded by numerous other uncertainties, from guitarist Eddie Van Halen’s battle with cancer to its lack of a record deal. The group split with Warner Bros. in early 2002 after spending its entire career recording for the label.

Hagar has a handful of shows booked with his band the Waboritas into early May.

Jonathan Cohen courtesy of Billboard