The Van Halen Ceremony That Never Truly Was: Michael Anthony Recalls Band’s “Pretty Sad” Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Induction

During a recent episode of The Hook Rocks! podcast, former Van Halen bassist Michael Anthony reflected on the disappointing experience he had when his former band was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame back in 2007.

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Of the members who were being inducted, only Anthony and the band’s second frontman, Sammy Hagar, attended the ceremony. Eddie Van Halen reportedly was in rehab at the time, while Alex Van Halen and David Lee Roth opted not to show up for the event. Van Halen had recently re-formed, with Eddie and Alex welcoming Roth back into the group for the first time since 1985. Anthony, meanwhile, had been replaced by Eddie’s then-teenage son, Wolfgang Van Halen.

[Buy Sammy Hagar Concert Tickets]

“Sammy and I were the only two from the band that showed up, and we weren’t even in the band at the time,” Anthony recalled. “It was pretty sad, because I turned to Sammy during the show—I forget who was on stage playing—and we were sitting at our table and I go, ‘Sammy, could you imagine if all of us, if we were all here and everybody got along and we got up there? We would kick the a– out of this thing. It’d be [an] induction ceremony that nobody would ever forget.’”

Anthony added, “And sadly enough, it wasn’t to be.”

[RELATED: Watch Van Halen’s Michael Anthony Perform Classic Rock Tunes with Green Day’s Side Project, The Coverups]

Anthony and Hagar did perform a version of Van Halen’s “Why Can’t This Be Love,” backed by the evening’s house band, at the ceremony.

On the Proposed Van Halen Tribute Tour That Never Happened

The 69-year-old bassist brought up the memory after talking about how, a few years ago, the surviving Van Halen members were unable to come together for a potential tribute tour for Eddie, who died of cancer in 2020.

“All I can say is—I’m not gonna point fingers—but through all of this, one of the ingredients was not, let’s say, playing ball with everybody else,” Anthony noted, apparently referring to Roth. “I’ll let you all figure it out. And that’s why none of it worked. And you’ve read it probably with Wolfgang’s interviews, too, that he’s been doing this past year.”

About The Best of All Worlds Tour

Anthony will be paying tribute to Eddie and the music of Van Halen this year on Hagar’s The Best of All Worlds Tour. As previously reported, Anthony and Hagar will be joined by guitar whiz Joe Satriani, who previously played with the two Rock & Roll Hall of Famers in the supergroup Chickenfoot, and drummer Jason Bonham.

In addition, Anthony revealed during the podcast that a keyboardist named Rai Thistlethwayte, who’s previously collaborated with Satriani, also will take part in the trek.

The Best of All Worlds Tour kicks off July 13 in West Palm Beach, Florida, and is scheduled to conclude on August 31 in St. Louis. Loverboy will be the opening act throughout the trek.

Tickets for the shows are available now via various outlets, including StubHub.

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Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/WireImage

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