Van Halen Photography

Van Halen

With their 1978 self-titled debut, Van Halen redefined hard rock while Eddie Van Halen’s revolutionary techniques forever changed the sound and significance of the electric guitar. The original lineup—frontman David Lee Roth, guitarist Eddie Van Halen, drummer Alex Van Halen and bassist Michael Anthony—dominated the late 1970s and early ’80s with hit singles like “Runnin’ with the Devil,” “Jump” and “Panama.”

When faced with the prospect of Roth going solo, they regrouped with former Montrose singer and solo star Sammy Hagar, who helped them evolve in the more melodic rock direction of the time. In fact, the new lineup soared just as high thanks to the hits “Why Can’t This Be Love,” “When It’s Love” and “Right Now” well into the ’90s.

In the late ’90s, Extreme’s Gary Cherone took over vocalist duties—with lukewarm reactions from both critics and loyal fans. But that didn’t stop Van Halen from being inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2007. Shortly thereafter, Roth returned—alongside Eddie’s son Wolfgang on bass—and the band resumed selling out arenas all across the globe.

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