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  1. #1

    Ronnie Montrose considered David Lee Roth as a replacement for Sammy Hagar in 1975

    We all know Eddie and Alex Van Halen, and Mark Stone formed a band called 'Genesis' in 1972.

    David was singing solo, as well as with Red Ball Jet's and would rent his P.A. system to Genesis, who around this time were on to their second band name, Mammoth.



    Although Dave had auditioned for Mammoth a couple of times, Alex, Eddie and Mark recruited him to Mammoth to save on having to rent his P.A.

    Come 1974 and Mark is continually late for band practice so Alex, Dave and 'little kid' Eddie audition Michael Anthony, whose solid bass, vocal style, commitment and professionalism give Mammoth the kick start they've hungered for.

    1974 also brings a name change to Van Halen, rather than Rat Salade, as wanted by Eddie.

    Van Halen plays various backyard parties at this time and majors in self promotion building up a growing audience.

    On New Year's Eve 1974, Van Halen were resetting their goals for the coming year. This included a recording a new demo, getting booked at Gazzarri's, and introducing more of their original songs to their 'covers' playlist.

    What none of the Van Halen band members knew that night is how close they came to losing their lead singer on a chance meeting with Ronnie Montrose.

    Ronnie should have been elsewhere that night, but for reasons now unknown, was in Pasadena early on and bumped into a young and exuberant David Roth who was entertaining some female admirers by singing a Beatles medley on the steps of City Hall.



    Ronnie and Dave got talking and shared a quart of juice that Dave happened to be carrying.

    They swap numbers and Dave invites Ronnie to Van Halen's gig.

    It is unknown whether Ronnie stated exactly who he was, other than someone in the music biz or even made the gig.

    Fast forward a few months and Sammy Hagar quits Montrose in February 1975.

    Ronnie starts thinking of a possible replacement.

    One option is 20 year old David Roth from Pasadena.

    Now the story I have heard is that Ronnie found the cigarette paper with Dave's number on it and invited him to audition, Dave declined and attempted to get some exposure for his group Van Halen. Ronnie, having already moved Montrose away from the metallic-crunch that defined their first album, felt that Van Halen's loud and heavy guitars and 'end of the world' drums were heading in a different musical direction and therefore wished Dave well, but failed to assist in any way.

    I've heard another ending where Ronnie, although interested, never could find Dave's number.

    Either way Ronnie did make a call to a Los Angeles-based vocalist, Bob James, who did audition and got the gig.

    To think it was all down to a chance meeting, a little bit of paper and Dave's vision.


  2. #2
    If anyone has anymore information on this ground breaking story, please post.

    And please keep your comments sane, intelligible and polite.

    Thank you.


  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by DLR 1973 View Post
    If anyone has anymore information on this ground breaking story, please post.

    And please keep your comments sane, intelligible and polite.

    Thank you.

    I thought this fact was common knowledge! Yes, it's true, it was between Roth and a little known singer who went by the name Pinky Warmouth. Pinky sang and played guitar in a local blues band in Carmel, CA called Blues Dazz. He was awesome, like a cross between Ozzy and Bryan Adams (it's hard to explain), and dressed outrageously in red patent leather. The only real problem was he had a hard time controlling his weight. Ultimately both he and Roth passed on the gig.

    Oh, the twists and turns of rock history!
    It can't be "Van Halen" without Roth, any more than it can be "Van Halen" without Eddie.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by 1234over View Post
    I thought this fact was common knowledge! Yes, it's true, it was between Roth and a little known singer who went by the name Pinky Warmouth. Pinky sang and played guitar in a local blues band in Carmel, CA called Blues Dazz. He was awesome, like a cross between Ozzy and Bryan Adams (it's hard to explain), and dressed outrageously in red patent leather. The only real problem was he had a hard time controlling his weight. Ultimately both he and Roth passed on the gig.

    Oh, the twists and turns of rock history!
    Right on brother, right on!

    Have to say I'm not familiar with Pinky's work. The Dazz Band were in various stages of formation in the mid 70's with various titles, Kinsman Dazz etc, and there were many artists that came and went from their line up, a bit like a revolving door.

    I know there were various personalities that Ronnie Montrose called on to audition.

    It reminds me of when David Lee Roth left Van Halen ten years later in 1985, and Van Halen were inviting different vocalists to audition for them.

    And then they end up with none other than Mr Sammy Hagar.

    Maybe the Van Halen's knew of the close shave with their lead singer back in 1975 and thought that this was some sort of twisted karma?



    Quote Originally Posted by 1234over View Post
    Oh, the twists and turns of rock history!

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by 1234over View Post
    Oh, the twists and turns of rock history!


    That was a classic concert. You know I always thought that Marty screwed up when he went back in time.



    To go back to 1955 and The Enchantment Under The Sea Dance, what a waste of an opportunity.

    If I had the Delorean I would have gone to the above concert, plus Gazzarri's before Van Halen were signed. Maybe the tour with Black Sabbath in Europe and definitely the Fair Warning tour.

    Thinking back to the above flyer, what's the probability that Sammy Hagar either watched Van Halen or bumped into them at some point after the show. Are there any pics of Sammy and Van Halen together pre-1985?

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by 1234over View Post
    I thought this fact was common knowledge! Yes, it's true, it was between Roth and a little known singer who went by the name Pinky Warmouth. Pinky sang and played guitar in a local blues band in Carmel, CA called Blues Dazz. He was awesome, like a cross between Ozzy and Bryan Adams (it's hard to explain), and dressed outrageously in red patent leather. The only real problem was he had a hard time controlling his weight. Ultimately both he and Roth passed on the gig.

    Oh, the twists and turns of rock history!
    This is priceless.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by wimpyliberalbuster32 View Post
    This is priceless.
    What is?

    I also know (for a F-A-C-T!), that prior to the guys asking Michael Anthony to join, they sent a SASE to Geezer Butler begging him to join. See, they ran into Geez hanging out at the Rainbow with John Bonham and Ritchie Blackmore, and while JB and RB blew them off, Geez took an interest in the lads, and promised to come over to their rehearsal space just to give a listen. Problem was, they weren't sure where they would be rehearsing as their rent was going up ,and they were gonna find a new place. So DLR, always fast on his feet, told Geez that they would mail him the address with an R.S.V.P invite to their practice session. Of course, the boys (particularly EVH) were over the moon about this, and with the folly of youth, started to hope beyond hope that Geez might join the band! Hence the SASE. Amazing, no? Alas, it wasn't to be, but it likely laid the groundwork for VH capturing the opening slot on the tour with BS. True story!
    Last edited by 1234over; August 21st, 2012 at 09:47 PM.
    It can't be "Van Halen" without Roth, any more than it can be "Van Halen" without Eddie.

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by 1234over View Post
    What is?

    I also know (for a F-A-C-T!), that prior to the guys asking Michael Anthony to join, they sent a SASE to Geezer Butler begging him to join. See, they ran into Geez hanging out at the Rainbow with John Bonham and Ritchie Blackmore, and while JB and RB blew them off, Geez took an interest in the lads, and promised to come over to their rehearsal space just to give a listen. Problem was, they weren't sure where they would be rehearsing as their rent was going up ,and they were gonna find a new place. So DLR, always fast on his feet, told Geez that they would mail him the address with an R.S.V.P invite to their practice session. Of course, the boys (particularly EVH) were over the moon about this, and with the folly of youth, started to hope beyond hope that Geez might join the band! Hence the SASE. Amazing, no? Alas, it wasn't to be, but it likely laid the groundwork for VH capturing the opening slot on the tour with BS. True story!
    I see you read, the California Zen VH book!

    The Blackmore/Bonham bit was true, but not the Geezer bit.

    Christ, both Bonham & Blackmore always come across as the biggest douchebags!
    Bonham, in particular, seemed like a violent, drunk asshole, 90 percent of the time.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by unchainedguitars View Post
    I see you read, the California Zen VH book!

    The Blackmore/Bonham bit was true, but not the Geezer bit.

    Christ, both Bonham & Blackmore always come across as the biggest douchebags!
    Bonham, in particular, seemed like a violent, drunk asshole, 90 percent of the time.
    yer no fun, UG!
    It can't be "Van Halen" without Roth, any more than it can be "Van Halen" without Eddie.

  10. #10
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    Cool

    Quote Originally Posted by unchainedguitars View Post
    I see you read, the California Zen VH book!
    O
    The Blackmore/Bonham bit was true, but not the Geezer bit.

    Christ, both Bonham & Blackmore always come across as the biggest douchebags!
    Bonham, in particular, seemed like a violent, drunk asshole, 90 percent of the time.

    I noticed Geezer used the " Stay Frosty " expression on his website a while back, so I guess he still likes VH.

    It never ceases to amaze me after all these years, to still find new information about VH, I must get that book most urgently. Such cool old pictures.

 

 

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