Former VAN HALEN and current CHICKENFOOT bassist Michael Anthony was a guest on yesterday's (Monday, April 8) edition of Eddie Trunk's SiriusXM satellite radio show, "Eddie Trunk Live". The two discussed the passing of Andy Johns, working with the legendary engineer and producer, hot sauce, David Lee Roth and all sorts of things in between. You can now listen to the chat using the audio player below (courtesy of Michael Anthony's official web site).
Asked about VAN HALEN singer David Lee Roth's recent interview with Rolling Stone magazine in which he said he wanted Anthony back in the band, the bassist said: "It was flattering to hear Dave talk like that. He never used to talk like that when we were all playing together. [laughs] But hey… I really don't know what to say to that. It was flattering that he said that. And, obviously, I'm the kind of guy that… water under the bridge. I don't hold any kind of grudges for anything, and you never know what will happen at anytime…. At this point in your life and career and whatever, the career aside, it's more about the friendship and just people. And if the music side of it, if that happens, if that comes about, all the better, but that's not what it's really about at this point."
During the Rolling Stone interview, Roth touched upon the touchy subject of Anthony replacing current bassist — and Eddie Van Halen's son — Wolfgang Van Halen, from here on out. "But Ed has his own vision, I'm assuming," Roth said. "We haven't really been able to speak about it and it's a disappointment, just as not having a chance for a reunion of the original band. Clearly, vocals are every bit as much a component of success as a rhythm section or a guitar solo. . . what we have at our fingertips is arguably one of the greatest high tenor voices ever — that was in Michael Anthony. In our tiny little corner of the universe, that voice is as identifiable as the high voice in EARTH, WIND & FIRE, as identifiable as the high voice in the BEACH BOYS. VAN HALEN is an indelicate house blend of both — that's intentionally."
Anthony said in a 2010 interview that Eddie and Alex Van Halen hold a grudge against him for maintaining a friendship with Sammy Hagar. Anthony recalled to Mojo, that the problems started between him and the band when in the late '90s, VAN HALEN once again tried unsuccessfully to bring David Lee Roth back into the fold. With VAN HALEN seemingly on hiatus, Hagar had called Anthony to see if he was interested in hooking up with him and Neal Schon in their side project PLANET US.
Anthony explained, "Some VAN HALEN fans say I left the band to hook up with Sammy, but I never said, 'I quit.' There was nothing going on in the VAN HALEN camp, but Eddie kinda backed me up against a wall. . . Eddie felt that I was a traitor. I helped hook Sammy back up with them for the 2004 reunion tour, but Eddie didn't want me to be a part of that originally, so I took a big pay cut. I'm not crying, I didn't need the money. I did that because I wanted to play for the fans. I signed away any legal rights I had with the name, the trademark or whatever. I did it because if that was the last time VAN HALEN would ever be on stage, I wanted to be part of it."
He went on to say, "The major reason why I'm not in VAN HALEN (now) is because I became friends with Sammy again. The Van Halen brothers never got over that. If they hold a grudge, they hold it forever."