Rumor Mill: The Original Van Halen Lineup May Do A Stadium Tour In 2019, Or They May Not, Who Knows For Sure, Certainly Not I
Also, hell may experience sub-zero weather conditions and the sky may be filled with Suidae.
Van Halen have transmogrified several times over the past fifty years or so, with Sammy Hagar and Gary Cherone subbing for original lead wailer David Lee Roth (their first number one album came after Hagar signed on), and bassman Michael Anthony replaced by Eddie Van Halen‘s kid, Wolfgang. Roth was back in the fold for a while in the mid-90s, but that reunion blew apart, and when they finally kissed, made up, and hit the road with Roth fronting, Wolfgang was the new bass player. So, technically, the original incarnation hasn’t been seen since Diamond Dave exited stage left when they were at their pinnacle in 1984.
Rumors are afoot that that’s about to change. Chatting with Vulture hacks late this year, Roth hinted that he’d be doing some stadium gigs with his old chums this coming summer: “Next time my rock band will be playing the same place that the Yankees play.” When he was queried as to whether he was saying that Van Halen would be playing at Yankee Stadium, he responded, “Yeah, but I can’t … If I say something on tape here and everybody goes, ‘Oh, this leaked…’ But, the band will be — I can’t say.” He added, “But the band is solvent. And I can say that I contacted colleagues about being part of the show — Metallica, Guns N’ Roses, Jason Aldean, the Foo Fighters, [Eric] Church, and [Chris] Stapleton. And they all said that, if everything happens, they would certainly be involved.”
Later, airstaffer Eddie Trunk said he had heard from anonymous industry sources that the original lineup would in fact be doing some stadium shows next year:
I hesitate to even talk about this because every year there’s some rumor about Van Halen about to do something or announce something, and ultimately it just doesn’t happen. But, a little more so than normal as we close out 2018, I’m starting to hear some rumblings. I have sources and people I hear from and stuff that — as I was saying the other day, has to remain off the record. So I cannot cite my source, but I did hear from somebody who is in the music industry, who told me that he has spoken to some people and he’s hearing from some people that there indeed will be some Van Halen activity in 2019 in terms of live shows.
And the rumors are — and it’s again, I stress rumors, rumors, rumors. Did you hear me say rumors? 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, and that there it’s gonna be some sort of stadium package. 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. And somebody who will remain anonymous, who contacted me because he was listening to this show yesterday, said that he also has heard that — and he is actively in the industry. And that would tie into what David Lee Roth said when he’s running around selling his skin cream or whatever it is that he’s doing — that Van Halen would play Yankee Stadium [in New York City].
I don’t think that Van Halen — even with the original band, I think Van Halen would need to have to do a full stadium tour of America. Even bringing Michael back, hypothetically, I still think they probably want a little more meat on the bone to sell it – meaning I don’t think they would do it just then. I’m thinking if it were to happen, it would be more of a — sort of like Def Leppard and Journey did some stadiums. Maybe not that much of a pure co-headline, but Van Halen with one or two real-name acts on as support. And that would also tie into one of the things that Roth said because he mentioned some other bands that they might be playing with. It’s something to hope for but I can tell you there are people that are actively in the music industry that listen to this show and I got an email from one yesterday saying, “Yeah I’m hearing it too. I’m hearing stadiums and I’m hearing, ‘original band.’”
In case it’s all true, and you wanna go, start looking for change behind the couch cushions: I don’t think these tickets will be cheap.