Van Halen
Airlines Center (AA)
, Texas
7:30 PM

Concert Review
by Paul Ridenour

[Concert Review by Ed Brown after Set List]

I am not a big Van Hagar fan and I certainly have no desire to buy a ticket to their concert online or stand in line.  I do prefer Van Halen with David Lee Roth.  I think they had better songs with Roth including my favorites “Jump” and “Jamie’s Cryin.”  Just a few days before their concert in
Dallas, a co-worker asked me if I wanted to buy his two tickets.  They were $75 a piece and on the front row of the lower back right balcony.  Ed Brown, a sometimes friend and sometimes writer of concert reviews on my webpage, said “Let’s go!” [Sounds like a song by The Cars.]

I do like the Sammy Hagar songs from the Van Halen album 5150, especially “Why Can’t This Be Love.”  I knew that there would be a lot of hits played and of course, just seeing Eddie would be worth it.  So, we went.

The opening band was three long-haired guys who just played head banging music.  Every song sounded the same and they seemed to have a never-ending ending.  They did have good voices and sounded British.  I have no idea what their name is and don’t care.


Sammy Hagar was fantastic.  He ran all over the stage.  Everyone kept throwing their t-shirts and light jackets on stage or at Hagar for him to sign.  The best thing he wrapped around himself was a Texas flag with the words “The Best of Both Worlds.”  Hagar spent much of the night putting on light jackets, signing T-shirts and jackets, throwing them back at the audience, and getting amongst the fans near the stage.  He let a couple of fans speak or sing David Lee Roth’s part on a couple of songs.

The stage was built like their logo (white letters on black flooring).  On both sides of the VH letters, it was open for up-close and personal fan seating.  See logo:

I do not think anyone threw their panties on stage.  The audience was plenty full of silicone.

I really enjoyed the songs that Hagar did by himself on his Red Rocker guitar.

Mike Anthony’s bass solo was cool.  Eddie seemed to play his guitar solo for about 10 minutes before he actually went into “Eruption.”  He played a few minutes after that.  It was an interesting solo.  Some of it was really cool and he played that guitar like a piano.  However, some of it was stupid and sounded like he was just making it up as he went along.  He recently has had a clean bill of health from his mouth cancer by Roth’s father, who is a doctor at John Hopkins University.

I am not sure why he is still smoking.  He smoked some on stage and left his cigarette stuck to his guitar.

The only problem during Eddie’s guitar solo was the obnoxious weight-challenged couple behind us.  The guy could not stop talking.  I turned and told him to “shut up” but he didn’t hear me.  The couple was sitting behind us and we were in Section 312, Row A, Seats 7 and 8.  If it would have been a movie theatre, I would have bought a large coke and dumped it on his head.

They had a few obscure videos that played during their songs.  I think one of their better songs was “Right Now.”  The video had lots of sayings like “Right Now…..You could be back stage (if..)….We could have peace….Eddie feels great.

The sound was fairly loud and the lighting was top notch.  Did they sound exactly like their albums/records/CDs like the Foo Fighters, Paul McCartney, and Pink Floyd?  The answer is no but they put on one heck of an entertaining show.  When Eddie and Mike sang background vocals, it sounded like Van Halen.

I was surprised how skinny Eddie and Alex are and how much they looked alike.  Both of them had their shirts off the entire evening.  Eddie was jumping around the stage like a banshee.  He still has that boyish smile but he has definitely aged a bit.

Too bad that David Lee Roth could not join them.  I think someday he will.  The ticket prices will be double.

Set List

Humans Being (with Ed on his 5150 Kramer!)
Up For Breakfast (new tune described as hard rocking fun)
Bass Solo
Somebody Get Me a Doctor (Mike on lead vocals)
It's About Time
Drum Solo
Top Of The World
Why Can't This Be Love
Eagles Fly (Sammy solo - acoustic)
Deeper Kinda Love (Sammy solo - acoustic)
Learning To See (new tune described as hard rocking and dark)
Best of Both Worlds
Guitar Solo (featuring Wolfgang Van Halen)
Ain't Talkin' 'Bout Love
Right Now

First Encore

You Really Got Me

Second Encore

When It's Love

Concert Review
by Ed Brown

I received an e-mail from my good friend Paul Ridenour who said some poor schmuck had Van Halen tickets he could not use. I told him I would go if he would go with me. He hemmed and hawed and finally agreed to go even though the $75 price was a little excessive in his opinion.

Boy was he wrong!!!

What a show!! After putting a buzz on at El Fenix, we wabo'd over to the AAC to our seats in the nosebleed section (First row) so nobody was in front of us. After about 20 minutes, two "musicians" and a drummer came out and started wailin' away at their guitars; to say they sucked is kind.  They did four songs and left. I looked at Paul and his ears were bleeding.

Finally, Van Halen (Hagar) came on stage and opened with "Jump."  The Set List is on Paul's review but the highlights of the show were "Ain't Talkin "Bout Love," "Right Now," "Panama," and the various solos.  I personally don't like shows where the bands sound just like the CD's and VH certainly did not disappoint.  My boss had tickets for this show for months and kept telling me Wolfgang would make an appearance during Eddie's solo. It never happened, but the worst part was the large couple behind us who thought they were more interesting than Eddie's solo. They would not shut up!  I finally turned around and gave them the universal "lower the volume sign" and it worked for a little while. Anyway, the show was great and the AAC is a great place to see a show. For $75, it would have been nice to be closer, but I can't complain.

Pictures from camera phone