This time, they were talkin’ ’bout love.
Replacement (and subsequently replaced) Van Halen vocalist Sammy Hagar and Eddie Van Halen reconciled before the legendary guitarist’s death, Hagar revealed to Howard Stern on the latter’s Wednesday show.
“Eddie and I had been texting, and it’s been a love fest since we started communicating earlier this year,” Hagar, 72, revealed to The Howard Stern Show, according to Metal Injection. “We both agreed not to tell anyone, because of all the rumors it would stir up about a reunion, et cetera, and we both knew that wasn’t gonna happen. But he also didn’t want anyone to know about his health.”
“He stopped responding to me a month ago, and I figured it wasn’t good,” Hagar continued to Stern. “I reached out one more time last week, and when he didn’t respond, I figured it was a matter of time. But it came way too soon.”
Hagar famously took over from original Van Halen singer David Lee Roth in 1985, kicking off a slicker period of the band sometimes derisively referred to as “Van Hagar” by fans. Hagar and Eddie also wound up at loggerheads, with Hagar himself being replaced by Extreme vocalist Gary Cherone in 1996, kicking off a period of the band mostly not referred to at all.
Hagar reunited with Van Halen for a 2004 tour but split with the band again after the troubled jaunt. Hagar chronicled much of the tour, including Eddie’s ongoing battle with alcoholism, in his 2011 memoir “Red: My Uncensored Life in Rock.”
Van Halen, who got sober in 2008, eventually described the tome as “definitely embellished,” telling Billboard in 2015 it was Hagar “painting a picture of something that never happened.”
Van Halen died Tuesday at 65 after a long battle with cancer.
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