About Those Van Halen-Michael Anthony Reunion Rumors …
Who was David Lee Roth talking about when he recently hinted at plans to return to "the original thing" with "somebody famous"? Discussions have centered on Michael Anthony, despite a busy slate for Van Halen's former co-founding bassist – and a still-unresolved falling out with band leader Eddie Van Halen.
"The rumors from reliable sources – but still rumors that are unconfirmed – is that the band will tour in 2019 with the original band, which would mean the return of Michael," radio personality Eddie Trunk says, via Ultimate Guitar. "So again I cannot stress enough that is not confirmed in any way shape or form but there are starting to be some real substantial rumors about that as we close out 2018."
Trunk added that he's hearing about "some sort of stadium package," which would also dovetail with Roth's comments. Roth mentioned plans to "come back through town in the summertime and do the original thing, maybe somewhere sportin,’ maybe with somebody famous," while speaking with Vulture earlier this month. "Next time, my rock band will be playing the same place that the Yankees play, okay?"
There would be plenty of potential obstacles to any such reunion.
Things, of course, didn't end well with Anthony. He hasn't played with Van Halen since 2004, when he reportedly took a pay cut and signed away his rights to the band name and logo. Three years later, Van Halen returned with a reworked lineup featuring Eddie's son Wolfgang Van Halen on bass. Eddie subsequently took several shots at Anthony, saying he had to show him how to play his instrument while derisively describing Anthony's voice – considered by many to be a key element in Van Halen's early recordings – as akin to "piccolo trumpet."
Anthony later participated in a series of post-Van Halen collaborations with Roth successor Sammy Hagar, including the Circle and Chickenfoot – and Hagar has often come to Anthony's defense. They were the only two members of the group to appear when Van Halen was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. Later, someone reportedly tried to erase Anthony from the band's history.
Both camps also look to have a busy 2019 on tap. Hagar recently announced a new Circle album with Anthony, set for release sometime next year. Wolf has also completed a long-discussed solo LP. Still, Anthony has spoken positively about trying to piece the original Van Halen lineup back together, describing it as an opportunity for "closure." And he had Roth have remained friends.
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