‘I just was always insecure’: A tough childhood drove Sammy Hagar’s business acumen

Sammy Hagar’s move into non-music related business was not a matter of happenstance. The former Van Halen frontman’s drive to create these fallback positions grew out of a harrowing childhood experience.

Despite a Rock and Roll Hall of Fame career that also included stops with Montrose and HSAS — all before he helped Van Halen to four consecutive chart-topping albums over a decade beginning in 1986 — the fear of losing it all continually gnawed at Hagar.

“I was raised poor,” Hagar says in this Fox 32 clip. “My mother was married to an alcoholic husband who died really young. My mother raised four kids by herself. And I just was always insecure. Once I started getting money from being in the music industry, I started trying to invest it — so that if my career ended, I was always worried about that. I’ve seen it: Half the people we know, they go up one day and they’re out the next. I didn’t know if that was going to happen to me or not. Thank God, it didn’t.”

Over the years, Hagar — who’s now touring behind the solo release of a guest-studded new studio record called Sammy Hagar and Friends — has designed and sold mountain bikes, launched nightclubs and restaurants, and created both a signature tequila and rum.

Hagar is also a member of Chickenfoot, formed with Michael Anthony (a fellow ex-Van Halen member) as well as Joe Satriani and Chad Smith.

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