David Lee Roth Weighs in on Rumored Van Halen Tribute Tour With Joe Satriani + Jason Newsted
This week, former Van Halen singer David Lee Roth addressed rumors surrounding a potential Van Halen tribute tour mentioned by ex-Metallica bassist Jason Newsted in an interview last week.
Indeed, it was the Metallica alum who suggested such a trek was to feature him and guitarist Joe Satriani (a member of Chickenfoot with Sammy Hagar, another former Van Halen lead singer) alongside Alex Van Halen, Van Halen's surviving drummer and the brother of their late bandleader, Eddie Van Halen. It is unclear who would sing in the proposed tribute.
Newsted told The Palm Beach Post on April 14 that Alex personally selected him and Satch. The bassist said he agreed to travel to California to jam with them and see how it felt, but admitted he ultimately knew it would be impossible to do justice to Van Halen's legacy.
"How could you [do it justice]?" Newsted posited. "There's nobody that can top it, so how do you show it honor? I didn't want it to be viewed as a money grab. And then it kind of just all fizzled."
Now, Roth has chimed in with his two cents, referencing the pop star Pink and the COVID-19 pandemic.
On Monday (April 18), in a statement emailed to the fan site Van Halen News Desk, Roth remarked, "IN MY MIND 'VAN HALEN 4K,' IN THE AGE OF COVID IS GOING TO REQUIRE TWO OF US FOR EVERY POSITION. SATRIANI AND LUKATHER, ANTHONY AND NEWSTED, AL OR TOMMY LEE. PROBABLY THE ONLY ONE WHO COULD DO MY JOB TODAY WOULD BE PINK.."
On the same day, Satriani confirmed Newsted's story of the tribute band's origins on the podcast Rock of Nations With Dave Kinchen.
"I've been talking with Alex and Dave for about a year about doing something – a tour, something like that – that was gonna be a true tribute to Eddie and the Van Halen legacy," Satch said. (via Guitar World)
The guitarist continued, “For me, it was a terrifying prospect of doing something like that, but I realized that it was something that would be a real labor of love for me. I was just so honored to take on the challenge. … And all I can really say about it is that if it does happen, I know we'll make it the greatest thing ever for the fans and we'll all celebrate together not only the great Eddie Van Halen but the legacy that that band created, the amazing amount of music and the goodwill and good vibes they created as a band."
Not mentioned was Wolfgang Van Halen, Eddie's son. After replacing bassist Michael Anthony in 2006, he played in Van Halen until Eddie's death in 2020. Switching to vocals and guitar, Wolf released his first album with Mammoth WVH in 2021.