The members of Van Halen claim it’s not their fault if David Lee Roth imagined he was going to rejoin the band for anything more than the recording of new songs for a greatest hits album.
“The intention all along was to do two new songs with Dave for the ‘Best of Volume I’ package,” the band responded Thursday in a five-paragraph statement. “He was never led to believe anything but that.”
On Wednesday, Roth faxed media outlets a statement saying he felt duped by Van Halen when he rejoined his old group for recording sessions and an appearance at the MTV Video Music Awards last month. He said he had heard the hard-rock band already had signed a new lead singer, who was identified as Gary Cherone of Boston’s metal-funk Extreme.
Roth originally quit the band in 1985 and was replaced by journeyman rocker Sammy Hagar. Hagar was ousted earlier this year, and it was quickly announced that Roth was back in the fold.
“Eddie did it … Had I asked for something in writing, this wouldn’t have happened,” Roth said in his statement. “And so I apologize to my fans and my supporters and to MTV. I was an unwitting participant in this deception … I wanted to believe it just as much as anyone else.”
Van Halen - guitarist Eddie Van Halen, bassist Michael Anthony and drummer Alex Van Halen - said Roth was never an “unwitting participant” in the band’s walk-on at the MTV ceremony.
“We parted company with David Lee Roth 11 years ago for many reasons,” the band stated. “In his open letter of Oct. 2, we were reminded of some of them.”
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