The supergroup that could’ve been.
On the heels of Eddie Van Halen’s death, Journey singer Steve Perry revealed in an interview with Rolling Stone that he passed up a chance to jam with the legendary guitarist shortly after lead singer David Lee Roth left the band in 1985.
“Eddie said that I should come down sometime and we should jam, have a play. Man, at some level within me I felt so honored because I was in awe of Eddie’s natural talent. He was just born with it. I wanted so badly to do that. We talked about how cool that could be musically. This was before Sammy [Hagar].
“The next day and in the weeks to come I thought, “I don’t know that I should do that. If it goes creatively to what I know it can go to …” Whatever I could bring to that, I know it would be something I’d really love doing. My only problem I had with it was the thought, “I don’t know that I could be the guy to go out and represent the David Lee Roth years with my voice. I don’t know if I want to be that guy.” And shortly therefor, they got Sammy and he was the perfect version of that guy.”
Roth is one of the greatest showmen in rock history, but never had the vocal range that matched the virtuosity of Eddie. It would’ve been fascinating to hear a collaboration between one of the greatest singers and guitar players in the history of rock.
“I don’t know what Eddie’s intentions were when he called me,” Perry said. “He was just saying, ‘Let’s get together and play.’ It wasn’t a promise. It was just, ‘Why not? Let’s see what this sounds like.’