In a new interview with Forbes, Sammy Hagar admitted that he hasn't been very prolific during the COVID-19 pandemic. "I have a million ideas," he said. "But I'm having a hard time with lyrics because I'm not a negative person and there's so many negative things. It seems like a negative time and I don't like to write about that. I really don't like writing about being locked down. So with my band we did the 'Lockdown Sessions' of cover songs, one new song. And that's about as creative as I've been on that level."
He continued: "What I've done is I've turned this time off into being able to deal with all of my different business ventures that sometimes get neglected. Other people have to do the work. They call me up and say, 'What do you want to do about this?' I say, 'I don't know. I don't have time for that.' 'Then why'd you start the damn business?' 'Cause I'm an idiot.' [Laughs] You give me five minutes off and I start a new business. So I really have been massaging all those things and being able to do stuff like this for Beach Bar Rum and for my Santo Tequila and for my Cabo Wabo Cantina. All these places needed attention. I really focused and have got so much done. [But] I'm so happy to start touring again and tell all these people, 'I don't have time for that today. I got a show tonight.'"
SAMMY HAGAR & THE CIRCLE released their massively popular "Lockdown Sessions" as an album collection titled "Lockdown 2020" on January 8.
"Lockdown Sessions" began in March 2020, when the COVID-19 shelter-at-home order went into effect. With time on their hands and their upcoming tour in limbo, the band's legendary drummer Jason Bonham challenged Hagar, Michael Anthony and Vic Johnson to record a warmup jam they'd been playing backstage before concerts for several years. Equipped with iPhones and their respective instruments, they each laid down their individual tracks from the den, music room, closet and even showers of their homes, and "Funky Feng Shui" and the band's "Lockdown Sessions" were born.
"When we first start doing these lockdown sessions, it was only meant to stay in touch with the fans until we could get back out on the road again," Hagar explained. "But as the weeks and months drew on, it also became a fun way to keep the band together, musically and creatively."
Over the next eight months, their "Lockdown Sessions" became a hit with critics and fans alike, producing 10 tracks and reaching an online audience approaching 30 million. The sessions gave the band the opportunity to throw down raw and raucous compact covers of classic hits that they'd jammed to backstage but never planned to record, including THE WHO's "Won't Get Fooled Again", Bob Marley's "Three Little Birds", AC/DC's "Whole Lotta Rosie" and more. When plans for an album came to fruition around the holidays, the band came together to record one more track, a cover of David Bowie's "Heroes" which they'd offer as an instant download or single purchase.
"With the addition of 'Heroes', it made sense to help those who are struggling from the effects of COVID-19," Hagar said. "It probably wouldn't have happened without it."