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  1. #1
    Little Dreamer
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    Favorite VH Album

    1984
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    Unchained
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    12.31.69 @ 04:00 PM
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    It seems like everyone wants to attribute the change in VH's sound over the years to either Dave or Sam (or Gary for that matter). I happen to think Eddie is the main reason for the sound change from era to era. EVH is/was the main creative force within the band, not Roth or Hagar. I seriously doubt Roth or Hagar ever came up with any of the guitar riffs or chord progressions that Eddie played. I don't mean to sound like I am discrediting the contributions of Sam and Dave, but it is just that there was a change in how Eddie played the guitar, and the music that he wrote. Musicians generally change and expand over the years, as do most other people.

    I mean what if Sammy originally sang on something like the music for "Mean Streets" or "Hot For Teacher". I bet those songs would still rock hard with him doing the vocals.

    I do happen to prefer the earlier albums with Roth, but that is primarily due to the music and the sound of Eddie's guitar. I just find it a little strange that a large group of people seem to think that VH's sound was created exclusively by Dave or Sam, when Eddie was/is the driving force.
    "Music Is The Best" - Frank Zappa

  2. #2
    XTC man! homeunit's Avatar
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    Favorite VH Album

    Cover Bands from Pasadena
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    Babe Don't leave Me Alone
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    09.05.15 @ 12:20 PM
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    I think you're right.

    I do think that Sam brought a diversity that wasn't present before to the band with his vocal range. Also I think Sam brought some heavy-duty arranging skills to the VH camp.

    I do believe Ed has always been the idea guy, and the rest of them put their two cents in after the fact.
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  3. #3
    Eruption ETRIGAN's Avatar
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    Favorite VH Album

    Van Halen/Van Halen
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    Romeo Delight
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    01.07.15 @ 01:55 PM
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    Donor

    Some very good points Birdieman. There was a definate transition in Eddies playing from Fair Warning and 1984. (Including Diver Down which I think Eddie was not very happy with.) The main differance between Dave and Sammy years was they quit tuning down 1/2 step to compensate for Roth's vocal range. I'm not sure but I believe most of 5150 was written when Dave was still a part of the band which definately underlines your post. Which reminds me, does anyone know if VH tuned Down on "Me Wise Magic" or "CGTSNM"?)
    "Why behave in public if you're living on a playground?"

  4. #4
    XTC man! homeunit's Avatar
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    09.05.15 @ 12:20 PM
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    Originally posted by ETRIGAN:
    does anyone know if VH tuned Down on "Me Wise Magic" or "CGTSNM"?)
    Eb I believe. It's been a long while since I've played with those tunes.
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  5. #5
    On Fire AlexFan's Avatar
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    09.07.08 @ 02:03 PM
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    The band did change when Sam came in. I think the love songs were a sell out, but that's just my opinion and I don't expect everyone to agree. When you take a hard rock band that makes solid music like 1984 etc, and then turn them into a machine that tries to make it on the radio on purpose, there goes the music quality itself. It just seemed like the fire was gone after 1984. I think Eddie's playing changed as well as his song writing and I'll tell you this: If I want a love song, I get a Mariah Carey album. If I want(ed) a hard rock album prior to 1985, I would get a Van Halen album. It's just that simple with me. VH trying to combine love songs with hard rock didn't appeal to me, much like a Reese's Peanutbutter Cup. I always said they were the two great tastes that taste like shit together. VH love songs are much the same with me.

    [ June 08, 2002, 04:55 AM: Message edited by: AlexFan ]
    Van Halen without the original 4 is just not Van Halen.

  6. #6
    Eruption gabby gabbster's Avatar
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    12.01.17 @ 09:52 AM
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    The reason VH is such a great band, in my eyes, is for the simple fact that their music has continued to change. It's difficult to attribute it to any one moment or person because it's actually a combination of factors that influence how music is brought to life. Not only does a change in band member change the dynamic of the writing process, but people in general change (i.e. Eddie). His playing has changed, his writing ability has become much more mature, and simply his life has continually changed.

    It would be a shame if VH released another Fair Warning. That album should stand alone as every other VH album should. The beauty is that each album is what it is, for that moment in time, and is nothing like any other.

  7. #7
    Good Enough Rocket's Avatar
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    Favorite VH Album

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    12.13.17 @ 08:48 AM
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    I think Eddie VH creating music in a vacuum makes songs that sound like crap and is somewhat tasteless. His soundtrack music is a testament to that.

    The melody and phrasing partner that he works with is what makes or breaks him. And no, I don't think if Sammy sang on FW it would still have been the great record it was.

    I think this holds true for Roth as well. With harmonic experts like VH and Vai he was awsome. Without, I think he can be pretty tasteless as well. DLR Band was OK, but no Eat Em and no FW.

  8. #8
    Banned!
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    02.18.11 @ 08:09 PM
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    you didn't listen to vhiii did you?

    the singer has a lot to do with it. sure eds sound has changed, but not as drastically as the sound from singer to singer.

  9. #9
    Eruption ETRIGAN's Avatar
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    01.07.15 @ 01:55 PM
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    Donor

    Originally posted by Rocket:
    I think Eddie VH creating music in a vacuum makes songs that sound like crap and is somewhat tasteless. His soundtrack music is a testament to that.

    The melody and phrasing partner that he works with is what makes or breaks him. And no, I don't think if Sammy sang on FW it would still have been the great record it was.

    I think this holds true for Roth as well. With harmonic experts like VH and Vai he was awsome. Without, I think he can be pretty tasteless as well. DLR Band was OK, but no Eat Em and no FW.
    I dunno. I listened to EEAS a couple of weeks ago and it wasn't as good as I remember it. Too many weak ass cover tunes.
    "Why behave in public if you're living on a playground?"

  10. #10
    Sinner's Swing! Zahzoo's Avatar
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    The Classic 6 Pack
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    Take Your Whiskey Home
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    11.04.17 @ 06:01 AM
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    Interesting I didn't see anyone mention an attribute that may have contributed significantly to the change in sound/songwriting from the original lineup to Van Hagar...

    Sammy was/is an accomplished guitarist and songwriter before, during and after he joined up w/ Ed, Al, & Mikey. I would suspect Sammy contributed ideas, riffs, melodies, etc to the song writing that were very different from DLR's contribution. I seriously doubt Sammy wasn't allowed to touch a guitar in 5150 and I'll bet jams between he and Ed resulted in shifts in musical direction. Sure the finished product was decisively Ed... but the getting there was influenced to some degree.

    Another point... Al is a very accomplished arranger and musician himself. Being the strong silent type it's really hard to tell what he brought to the mix when composing new material. This seems to be a point absent in a lot of discussions mostly because it's an unknown due to his quiet pressence in the band.

    Mike as well has some contributions that add to all of this. I would imagine a lot of the coordination and content of the backing vocals and melodies within the bottom end were created by Mike. Sure it's been said Ed has written some of the bass material... But Mike can stand his own with just 4 strings!!
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  11. #11
    Hang 'Em High MAX's Avatar
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    Favorite VH Album

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    06.03.10 @ 11:18 AM
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    Donor

    Michael Anthony has been the one consistant thing about both eras of VH. It shows considerably during Roth's current show. Dave and his band do one hell of a job playing the songs, but without Mikey's trademark backing vocals it doesn't sound as classic. I think Mike has been the major force in carrying Van Halen for as long as they did. [img]graemlins/thumb.gif[/img]
    EAT US AND SMILE!!!!

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