Sammy Hagar reminisced on his 2002 tour with David Lee Roth, saying that the other ex-Van Halen frontman “ain’t like his [on-stage] persona” and that his most recent tour was “so bad” that it was “embarrassing”.
The “Sammy Hagar and David Lee Roth Tour 2002: Song For Song, The Heavyweight Champs Of Rock And Roll,” also known by its less formal unofficial names like the Sam & Dave tour or Sans Halen, was created to bridge the gap between supporters of Roth and those of Sammy Hagar and Van Halen, and it lived up to expectations of being a pro-wrestling-like rock spectacle.
Sammy Hagar said he was doing his colleague a favor by agreeing to take part in the 2002 tour when he spoke to Steve-O recently on the “Wild Ride!” podcast of the “Jackass” actor, alleging Roth was still not appreciative of the chance but rather just the contrary.
“At that time [Roth] didn’t have a solo career, really. I mean, he did, but he wasn’t selling out. I was selling out arenas. I was selling out amphitheaters as Sammy Hagar with the Waboritas And I had a solo career.
Ask Mick Jagger. Ask Robert Plant. You can be the biggest band in the world and you can’t necessarily have a solo career. But I had a solo career. So when I joined the big band, I went back to my solo career, I’m good. I still sell a lot of tickets.
Dave, he had that sort of a big album, one kind of a big album, but he didn’t have a solo career. He was playing small places. So when he came in with me, he was making, like, 25 grand a night, I was making 150 grand a night, and they said, ‘Oh, you guys are gonna make the same money. Dave gets to make 150.’ I said, ‘He ain’t fucking made 150 in his life except in Van Halen.’
But I said, ‘I’ve gotta do this.’ So I bent over backwards. And he still always tried to fuck with the rules.”
Hagar described his perception of Roth as follows:
“He’s not a fun guy. He doesn’t play well with others. I’m not sure what his problem is… He just always is about, ‘How can I make this guy look bad?’ And not just me — in life.
He’s a chest-beating m*********. And God bless him, ’cause the early stuff is frickin’ great. I personally, I’ve tried to say… [I thought] he’d be a fun guy to know. But he ain’t like that. He ain’t like his persona. When you get around him, he ain’t that guy. He’s some other cat. [Laughs]”
Even so, Red Rocker Sammy Hagar acknowledges that David Lee Roth is an infrequently talented showman, calling his most recent singing performances “embarrassing”:
“He’s a showman. Hey, listen, I’m a showman too. But that’s his gig. He doesn’t care about singing. If he did, he’d take care of his voice or he’d take voice lessons and get warmed up and do something. ‘Cause the guy sang so bad last time he was doing shows, it was embarrassing… But he’s a showman.
Everything’s show, show, show, show, show, show, show. And he doesn’t care about his voice, which drives me nuts, man. I care more about my voice than I do my dick. If my dick didn’t work a couple of times, I’d be okay with it — I’d be bummed out — but if my voice fucks up onstage, I’m fucking bummed, man.”