Wolfgang Van Halen has passed along encouraging news on how his father Eddie Van Halen is doing after undergoing surgery for a nasty case of diverticulitis. The younger Van Halen, appearing now as bassist with Tremonti, spoke with Metal Express Radio correspondent Mick Burgess during the UK leg of the new tour.
“He’s going good,” Van Halen says. “He’s doing really, really good. He came out to our show in Kansas City, and I posted a picture of all of us on Twitter, and everybody was going crazy over it, saying how good he looks. We’re all just hanging out, and enjoying this down time while we wait for dad to get better and then get back out there.”
Wolfgang took over for original bassist Michael Anthony for Van Halen’s tour in 2007-08 and then, after a few months off, the bassist and Eddie Van Halen began a series of loose jams and conversations over older unreleased demo tracks that eventually evolved into A Different Kind of Truth, Van Halen’s first full-length studio recording with founding frontman David Lee Roth since 1984.
“We kept playing all of those songs, and changing them here and there, and making them better,” Van Halen tells Burgess. “I felt like, digging deep into the classic era, where my dad was in the mindset of writing ‘Running with the Devil’ or ‘Dance the Night Away,’ it would be great to reach in and … put (drummer) Al (Van Halen), my dad and Dave back into that head space — so we could start writing classic-sounding Van Halen tunes.”
The resulting sold-out tour was halted when Eddie Van Halen was sidelined, and Wolfgang was then asked to join Tremonti — led by Creed’s Mark Tremonti — after his band’s bassist Brian Marshall left. Van Halen says it’s the first time he’s ever taken the stage without his famous father.
“It really isn’t that different,” the younger Van Halen says. “People always ask me, is it weird playing smaller places or what’s it feel like to be doing this, but as long as I am playing music, and playing for people that enjoy it, there really is no difference.”
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