‘I was stabbed in the back and left for dead’: Sammy Hagar can’t imagine even shaking hands with Eddie Van Halen

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Sammy Hagar’s retrospective tour inevitably brought him face to face again with his hitmaking tenure in Van Halen — and with another round of similarly inevitable questions about a reunion.

He just can’t see it, not after everything that’s happened — and not after his brutally frank book, which outlined a series of grievances aimed at band leader Eddie Van Halen. Hagar shared membership in the group with Alex Van Halen and Michael Anthony, as well. Anthony has since joined Hagar in Chickenfoot.

Still, Hagar admits missing the camaraderie that once made them a Rock and Roll Hall of Fame outfit.

“Every part of me, from my hair to my toes, misses my relationship with Eddie and Alex Van Halen,” Hagar says tells Grammy.com. “I think Alex and I are probably still good friends. But Eddie and I, we hit a real hard bump in the road. It’s kind of like a relationship with a partner, and things go so wrong that you don’t feel like you could ever let that go. But we’ll see. I think I can let anything go, but I don’t know if Eddie can let anything go. Maybe he can. But right now, there’s a lot of resentment built up.”

That resentment has left him doubtful that things will ever be resolved. Van Halen’s induction into the rock hall was indicative of that, with Hagar and Anthony accepting the honor — while the Van Halen brothers (not to mention original frontman David Lee Roth) were absent.

“It’s like there’s so much anger,” Hagar adds, “that I don’t even want to run into him. I think we’d get into each other’s face. It got real ugly, unfortunately. When I wrote my book, I had to say it all. I wanted to clarify that: Don’t ever ask me again why I’m not in Van Halen. I was thrown out, stabbed in the back and left for dead, you know? You just can’t go back and hug and kiss those kind of people that do that to you. And now that I’ve written about it in the book, and I don’t think that Eddie would ever shake my hand. But Alex knows it was all true.”

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