The Dutch Van Halen Fan Club (Circa December 1999)[/b]

Dutch Fan Club: I'm a little depressed now. I need some cheer ups from you.

MA: You can't be more depressed than I am! I wish I had something I could tell you. Right now, the only thing I can say to cheer you up is that three weeks ago Eddie went for his hip operation and everything went great. He's recuperating right now.

DFC: That's good news! But what happened with Gary?

MA: It was a mutual thing. Gary did leave the band because of writing differences stuff like that. After the holidays, when Ed get's better, we're gonna see what's going to happen. It could be a reunion with one of the others, with Dave or Sam. We haven't decided anything yet.

DFC: What are your feelings about this?

MA: It's very frustrating.

DFC: On stage the band never sounded as good as the last tour.

MA: I totally agree. We obviously played music that we hadn't done, some of it, in 20 years. Right now, I guess the main thing is to wait until Eddie's well. Within a few months he'll be able to jump off his ass again. We're gonna take it slow this time and we don't want to make any mistakes.

DFC: When Gary joined the band, Edward said something like ‘if this bombs I'll quit Van Halen and start writing film music’...

MA: (laughs) No. I don't think he’s going to do that. He also told people that he would quit and take up playing the tuba.

DFC: Well, he started to play cello!

MA: It's in your bones, you know. We really have to think this one out whether we will get a new singer. I don't know if that would be the correct thing to do, at this point...whether we can settle differences with Sammy or come back with a reunion tour with Dave. So this is what we have to think out. I really don't know what to think because I think there are plusses and minuses for each thing. We'll probably wait until the holiday is over and Eddie is pretty much back to normal. And then him, Alex and I get together and then we'll see what's the best way to go.

DFC: You must have strange feelings towards this situation because all the splits didn't go very well.

MA: That's why it will be very...if we decide that we want to try something again with one of those guys then we definitely all have to get together and try to work out our differences, the problems that we've had.

DFC: I guess it would be a major sell out if Dave returns.

MA: Oh yeah. I think Dave would probably come back. The reasons why it didn't work out after the 'Best of' were kind of silly reasons. Mostly on Dave’s part. I don't know...it's kind of frustrating because I got a new guitar deal I'm working on with Yamaha guitars. I'd like everything to work out with a big new tour. I definitely think that whatever we do we’re gonna kick some major ass.

DFC: Last time you were not very happy with the return of Dave and if you have to tour with him now...

MA: See, we'd have to put aside certain things, certain feelings. It's for the best, we feel that's for the best for the fans.

DFC: I think the fans will love it.

MA: Obviously, if Dave goes out with us, we can't play any of the Sammy material because Dave wouldn't be able to sing it.

DFC: And the other way around. I mean, Sammy was not very happy to sing the old stuff.

MA: Exactly, see we really would have to work out some things.

DFC:I don't know if this rumor on the internet is true, but was Ray Danniels fired?

MA: Yes, Ray Danniels is no longer managing us.

DFC: A lot of things are happening around Van Halen.

MA: Ooh yes!!

DFC: Now that rumor is true, there's a bigger chance that Sammy will return because Ray Danniels was one of the reasons that he left.

MA: Yes, that was a big reason why he left. The vision that Ray had was not the way we wanted to be managed in the future. We had different ideas as far as what we wanted and that didn't agree with Ray. I think it will be for the better for us.

DFC: It seems that Sammy said, some time ago, that he wanted to do a ‘Sam & Dave Tour’. That's pretty ridiculous, don't you think?

MA: I think it's pretty ridiculous too. That's just a rumor. I think somebody talked to Sammy and Sammy said that as a joke in an interview and they printed it.

DFC: The name of the band slipped my mind right now , but there is a band touring with two singers.

MA: Oh really?

DFC: But I guess that's impossible for Van Halen. That wouldn't work.

MA: No, I don't think so. If we could work out something like that, it would be our last tour anyway. I mean, what would you do after that?

DFC: Maybe it's your turn, Mike.

MA: Oh jeez, I don't need that kind of pressure. If I could sing a song live, maybe sing one thing on the album, that's fine with me.

DFCL: Did you hear about DLR doing all the Van Halen stuff on his last tour?

MA: Yeah, someone gave me a video of him playing in Seattle, Washington. I guess he was opening up for Bad Company?

DFC: Yes that's right

MA: I got the video and all the stuff except for two songs is all Van Halen.

DFC: What's your feeling about that? Don't you think that's strange?

MA: Yeah, in fact DLR has a cover band of Van Halen. The guitar player who was playing with him is in the band The Atomic Punks. It feels weird that the guitar player is copying Ed's solo note for note. It's like a total Van Halen Tribute band starring David Lee Roth (laughs)

DFC: I've got to ask you about the rumor that you and Ed have jammed with David Coverdale.

MA: We've heard about that one too! Actually the latest rumor I heard was on the radio: Sebastian Bach. But I also heard that Skid Row is getting back together with him.

DFC: Oh, I didn't even know they’d split up.

MA: When Sammy left the band, my technician Kevin did some shows with Skid Row and Sebastian Bach was telling him ‘Kevin, I was born to sing with Van Halen. You've got to get me in that band!”(laughs)

DFC:Oh, he's a big Van Halen fan. To close this conversation with something positive.…

MA: Yeah, you've got to keep it positive.

DFC: For this issue I'm doing a story about how Mighty the Mighty Van Halen was, this century. Did you know that Van Halen is on number 11 in the list of best selling artists in the U.S.

MA: Oh really?

DFC: Van Halen sold more records in the U.S. than the Rolling Stones.

MA: That's good to know.

DFC: I knew Van Halen was big but when I saw that list, I was pretty amazed.

MA: We can't let that die.

DFC: And did you know that Van Halen is in the new edition of the Guinness Book of Records?

MA: Oh, no! I didn't know that either!

DFC: Van Halen is the band with the most number one hits in the Billboard Mainstream Rock List. Eleven number one hits.

MA: Oh really? And that's in the Guinness Book of Records? I think I'm gonna pick that up.

DFC: You're done with U.S. Festival; it's no longer mentioned anymore. So I thought you might like to know this.

MA: That's great to know. There will be more good news next year!

Interview 1999 The Dutch Van Halen Fan Club