Van Halen Discuss ‘5150’ Album (Audio)

The nationally syndicated rock star interview radio show In The Studio is streaming a new episode this week to commemorate the 25th Anniversary of Van Halen’s 5150 album. Eddie and Alex Van Halen, Michael Anthony and Sammy Hagar discuss the classic album with the shows host, Redbeard. (The interviews aren’t new – they’ve been pieced together from older In The Studio interviews).

Listen to the full program here. Or check out the episode’s preview clip here.

  • Tommy Boy


  • ikethebird

    M.A. talks very highly of EVH.

  • EsM

    Of course Mike is speaking highly of Ed. He was his boss! This interview is old! Ask M.A. the same questions now and see what he has to say-

  • Ted

    It was great!

  • Steve

    I haven’t watched it yet, but does it include the MTV interviews where Sammy states how his band was rehearsing and he was getting ready to start a new records when all of the VH thing hit? Interested because in his book he says he was just ready to take a year off and was literally on the couch. Which one is it?

  • Dooley


    Since you raised the issue…Mike was on That Metal Show on VH1Classic recently. His only reference to Ed was in response to a question about how working with Joe Satriani compares to working with Ed. He was good natured and said Joe was more methodical in his approach to music whereas Ed would just say “hold it (the guitar) like this, then wham it…” or words to that effect. No disrespect at all.

  • Roth_Leaps_83

    Bottom line is this — we will NEVER get the full story on Van Halen until every member writes his own autobiography and then we look at the collective whole and make up our own minds on what really happened.

    We’ve already heard from Sam and Dave on their side of things… we need a book from Mike (who might be the most objective member), Eddie, and Alex. Cherone probably wont have much to write so I will exclude him.

    Personally, I trust Dave and Mike the most. Those guys have always taken the high road with their time in Van Halen and have a healthy perspective on it. Sammy and Eddie are the most bitter and tell the most lies to hurt the other members. That’s just the way it is.

  • Adrian

    The headline made me jump haha, I assumed it was van halen talks in 5150, about new album. HA like that would happen…

  • No Mas Tony

    Yeah, I’ll agree with Dooley. You could ask Mike the same questions today and he’d probably say the same thing. That’s the kinda guy he is.

    Thing that bugs me is hearing how Valerie is coming to Eddie asking him, “should Dave be wearing that, saying that…?” etc. FUCK THAT. Go make me a sandwich. If I decide to do a VH sitcom we’ll come ask you your opinion. I hate when a dude in a group, company, etc gets married and suddenly his wife becomes a business partner. She didn’t need to be instigating anything. This is coming from a married man. Eddie should’ve been like, here’s a wad of cash, go buy something pretty… I got this shit. LOL

  • 5150guy

    ROTH_LEAPS_83 said that we’ve already heard from Dave.

    I sincerely mean not disrespect, but, did you read Dave’s book? That thing is filled with tangent upon tangent (upon tangent) with no relevant information about anything.

    The book is (somewhat) humorous, and all, but, as a Biography… I think not.

    The musings of a mad-man, in my opinion.

    I agree that Mike would be the most objective, but unfortunately, I just don’t see Mike writing a book, regardless of how much we’d all love to read it. I think that his “Biography” was the forward in Sam’s book.


    Funny the first thing mentioned is Dave!

  • Roger Rackit

    Best Album EVER!!!!!

  • freddiegirl

    No Mas Tony…ugh. Can we just blame all of Ed’s problems on Valerie? Seriously..that crap annoys me. I have my hobbies, my music; guitars and my man has his; motorcycles. We’re both supportive but we both have seperate as well as joint friends. Makes life so much easier. Maybe I’m wrong but it always felt to me like it was Dave Valerie initially wanted. As a chick it’s always been my experiance that if a girl bitches about a dude a lot that she secretly likes him.

  • S

    Val and Dave had something going on – I suspect – that didn’t end well.
    Its a wonder we got as much from VH as we did. Classic serious abusers and alcoholics!
    5150 could live another life if it was re-recorded with real drums and some other tweaks. Some really good tunes on that record. Great ‘new band’ energy in the recording that might be hard to reproduce now I guess.

  • patt5150

    I think we should all take Ed’s words to heart, good music is good music, who cares whether its a freakin’ tuba or an electric guitar. 5150 is good music, no check that, GREAT MUSIC!!! I honestly LOVE this record (needs more boost in the bass department in my opinion however), this album rocks from start to finish, well minus “The Inside” … LOL!! (they should have put “I want Some Action” on the album instead). Love Sam, or hate Sam, there can be no debate about the quality of good tunes on this record!! IT ROCKS!! VIVA VAN HALEN!!!


    5150guy – I love Dave’s book – read it many times. Dave said one reviewer said his of his book: …”tends to ramble”, and Dave said, Tends!?


    Just finished listening to it – not much there really. And it sounds like the interviews were recorded more at the 5th anniversary rather than now.

  • http://none Growapair.

    Why can’t Sammy admit that compared to Van Halen he was small potatoes.That’s the truth.Do you think he would have joined a small no name group based on the fact that they jammed together and it felt so right.They always said Roth’s ego was huge but I’m thinking he’s downright humble compared to Hagar’s.You have to read in between the lines with Sam and that is he’s full of himself.

  • 5150guy

    Jack N Sam – Well, I stand corrected.

    Actually, I don’t. I didn’t say that I didn’t like the book, but it isn’t a good BIOGRAPHY. You completely said exactly what I was saying. It’s funny, but it’s tangent upon tangent.

    Also, I believe that the actual quote was… “rambles a bit”, and then Dave says “A Bit?”

  • No Mas Tony

    @ freddiegirl — I think that Valerie felt threatened by Dave actually and intrigued that this guy who held the reigns so-to-speak, had control of the group… and she probably was put-off by it. Like, “who’s this dude telling my husband how the press conference should go!?”, etc… and yeah, she was probably attracted to Dave at the same time. Anyway, I was half-kidding, but seriously, if she knew anything about Rock & Roll and the music industry it would be different. She wasn’t around in the beginning. Ed and Dave were. Ed’s a big boy. If he needed to work out some differences with Dave, HE should do-so on his own prerogative. He didn’t need Valerie standing over his shoulder questioning things. Just my humble opinion of course.

    But freddiegirl, I was messing around about most of the other shit; hence the “LOL”. I hear you talking about guitars and on this forum and I could tell you know your stuff. I don’t play anything but drums (poorly) 🙁 . If you were married to Eddie, you would be someone that could give him some input into the direction of the band. But not some sitcom actress.

  • littlebigtoe

    Find myself saying this would be killer if Roth was on it.

  • Herb

    Well growapair, I would like to commend you on reading between the lines to deduce Sam has an ego. Wow, who woulda thunk a rock star who once fronted one of the biggest bands on the planet would? I only wish I was as perceptually adept as you.

  • freddiegirl

    No mas Tony..I actually agree with you on all of it though; even though you were LOLing! It’s funny you mention that about being married to Eddie; when I was a little girl of 8 I wanted to grow up and marry him.. 😀 Instead I learned how to play guitar! I love the drums…I can only do a few things on the drums and would love to learn more…keep playin’ man! I wish I had more time to do all the things I’d like! I read somewhere that one of the reasons Ed fell in love with Valerie was because of the fame; he felt she understood the position he was in. Hopefully Ed’s found a better lady now. Hopefully…


    5150guy – I wasn’t correcting, just commenting, and yes I was agreeing with you as far as the style it was written in. There may have been more interviews but the one I saw he said Tends.

    Anyway, I learned a lot about Dave’s life by reading his book, and I gained a better understanding of where his music comes from. It was written in the style of “storytelling”, which he explains at the end of the book. As opposed to, I was born here, then we went there, then I did this, etc. That might work for some, but I found this way worked better for Dave.

    Didn’t mean to get off subject there…


    No Mas Tony – I agree Val prob’ly felt threatened. And Dave prob’ly felt that way too. But she had no business in the band’s business. VH image was Dave’s job and well, he was pretty damn good at it wasn’t he? Val can tell her husband what to wear to dinner, not what to wear to a press conference or on stage. That ain’t her place. I bet Al and Mike’s wives didn’t do that.

    But Ed was prob’ly just trying to keep peace in his house… 🙂

  • Roth_Leaps_83

    I gotta agree with No Mas Tony about Valerie. I think she was definitely a factor in Dave leaving VH. I think the band would’ve broken up anyway even if she never married Ed, but I think her meddling in band affairs didn’t sit well with Dave, and probably not with Alex or Mike either.

    You have to remember all 4 members of the original lineup grew up together and made all the decisions that achieved their dreams of becoming a huge rock band. Suddenly, this famous chick comes into the picture and starts throwing her opinions around and it messes with the chemistry the 4 guys always had. I dont think Mike’s wife was very involved with the band, nor Alex’s.

    Valerie does need to take some of the blame for breaking up the original Van Halen. Not a large part, but she helped widen the rift between Dave and the other members. I dont know if I buy the idea she was attracted to Dave. I’ve never heard anything to support that theory.

  • Nat

    Think back 20, 25 years to some ex girlfriend or boyfriend, or maybe ex-wife or husband. Do you seriously remember everything clearly today or do you just remember the bad stuff? And do you think the other half of the equation remembers it the same or from their position in it all?

    I don’t think these guys are making shit up about what happened, or trying to lie to make it look like it was all someone else’s fault. I just think they’re far removed from those days and they tell it like they remember it.

    I highly doubt we’ll ever see some sort of “definitive” story of everything that went down over the years. The stories are going to depend on who’s telling them, and what point of view they’re coming from.

  • Tater Salad

    You guys have brought up some very good points in the comments here. I’m really liking 5150 right now. Best of Both Worlds and Summer Nights-those songs are making me want the summer, my wakeboard, and the boat radio blasting those songs!!! I’ll always have a soft spot in my heart for Best of Both Worlds because that is the first Van Halen riff I was able to play on guitar 🙂

    Dreams was the song that played on the video of Van Halen performing at the Whisky, right? Haven’t seen that in a while, but I thought it was a pretty cool video. Its kind of bittersweet though, because Dave isn’t fronting, even though he was the one who played the clubs with VH in the early days, no dis to Sammy, but it almost seemed….wrong? Off? To me at least.

    I wasn’t a huge fan of the synth stuff totally at first but it grew on me. I find myself really liking Dreams and Love Walks In right now. Even though Love Walks In has that really 80s synth sound, I find myself liking that sound.

    One thing I do miss is Alex’s trademark snare sound. And Im going to have to get used to the drums on Summer Nights after watching Live Without A Net version a lot.

    Overall I really like the album. Good chemistry.

  • Sparks on the Horizon!!

    I remember reading in one of the last issues of The Inside (2002ish?) a comment by Valerie urging fans of CVH to check out Dave’s solo show and that it was really good. I remember thinking, where the hell did that come from?

    The only thing wrong with Dave’s book is I wish it was 863 pages longer.

  • HSAS

    Can we get a list of other hard rock albums that came out that same year? Let’s get an idea of where 5150 ranks against its competition………instead of comparing it to VH One, etc….

    Hard Rock released 1985 to 1987. Where does 5150 rank?

  • Mike

    Great question, HSAS. Off the top of my head, 5150 is probably better than most of the hard rock albums from that era.

    I think of albums like Whitesnake 1987, Girls Girls Girls, or Slippery When Wet that had their moments but were mostly filler. There were some hair band debuts at the time (like Look What the Cat Dragged In) that I haven’t heard all of but likely fall into the same category.

    Night Songs was pretty good, as was Mechanical Resonance.

    Hysteria was good for what it was but perhaps too slick for a hard rock record – but that’s getting into 87/88.

    I’m considering Master of Puppets ‘metal’ and not including it.

    What am I missing…

  • Danny

    I have always tried to avoid the Dave and Sam argument but im sucked in this time. I am a Dave fan but an honest Dave fan. I like his music because it was fun. He was not a great musician. Im am going to list a few facts. No oponion, just facts.

    Pre VH
    Sammy had a successfull career.
    Dave was turned down by the brothers and eventually let in only because he had a PA. That came form Eddie’s mouth.

    Durring VH
    Ed expressed his frusteration that Dave’s range limited how he could write music. Daves voice has a limited range. Also, he was hung up on always trying to do cover tunes.

    Ed mentioned in several interviews that Sammy’s range alowed him (not forced) to be more creative musically.

    Post VH.
    Dave went back to cover tunes. He wrote a few originals but they withered up and died. He coasted off the VH success for as long as he could and ended up doing a cheesy Vegas show that was, you got it, mostly old VH and cover tunes.

    Sammy has relaesed albumms and toured several times. His shows cover his entire career. He has not just treid to suck the life out of the Halen years.

    I will agree, VH was the best thing to happen to Sammy. He was in his prime with them. VH was the ONLY thing to happen to Dave. I love original VH as much as the next guy. Just quit bashing Sammy because he is a bad musician or riding on the coat tails of his VH time. That would be Dave.


    According to Billboard, these are the artists that hit #1 in 1986:

    Mr Mister
    Whitney Houston
    Janet Jackson
    Patti Labelle
    Top Gun soundtrack
    Miami Vice soundtrack
    Lionel Ritchie
    Huey Lewis
    Bon Jovi
    Bruce Springsteen

    You also had folks like:

    The Bangles
    Billy Ocean
    Bruce Hornsby
    Peter Gabriel
    Peter Cetera
    Steve Winwood
    Robert Palmer
    Dire Straits
    Simple Minds
    And of course, Dave

    This is the stuff that was on the radio folks… Not a lot of hard rock out there at that time.

  • Sparks in ’11

    Wow, Danny. You’re quite the honorable Dave fan. There isn’t even any Sammy bashing on this thread, and yet you, being uncontrolably “sucked in” to the Sam and Dave debate, level Dave with your poor grammar, harsh opinions (even though you said, “no opinions, just facts”)and, ofcoarse, faulty facts!! But that wasn’t enough. You cut and pasted your hogwash from the previous thread because reading it once would not have been enough, right? You love original Van Halen as much as the next guy? Funny way of showing it.

  • HSAS

    Here’s a list of what’s on my ipod of hard rock released betix 1985 and 1987:

    ACDC Fly on the Wall
    Aerosmith Done with Mirrors
    Roth Crazy from the Heat and Eat em and Smile
    The Firm
    The Firm Mean Business
    Great White Once Bitten
    Guns n Roses Appetite for Destruction
    Iron Maiden Somewhere in Time
    Joe Satriani Not of this Earth
    Joe Satriani Surfing with the Alien
    Judas Priest Turbo Lover
    Metallica Master of Puppets
    Motley Crue Girls Girls Girls
    Ozzy Ultimate Sin
    Queensryche Rage for Order
    Sammy Hagar I Never Said Goodbye
    Tesla Mechanical Resonance
    Triumph Sport of Kings
    Van Halen 5150
    Live Without a Net
    Whitesnake Whitesnake
    Y&T Down for the Count
    Yngwie Marching Out

    In my own opinion, 5150 is the 2nd best album on this list……………behind Eat em and Smile