How Mitch Malloy Almost Became Van Halen’s Third Singer (Video)

For the first time on camera, Mitch Malloy shares his story of how he was offered the singer position in Van Halen in 1996. And for the first time, listen to a sample of Mitch Malloy singing over an unreleased Van Halen instrumental.

Mitch_Malloy_1The legacy of Van Halen has never had a shortage of drama or die-hard fans…and rocker Mitch Malloy (official website) has a unique place within the still-unfolding drama. Following the ousting of Sammy Hagar from the band Malloy was tapped as the lead singer replacement, but subsequently declined this rock royalty position. For years Mitch Malloy’s story was touched on but never fully revealed, mostly by Malloy to avoid conflict with his current musical pursuits. After the publication of “Everybody Wants Some: The Van Halen Saga,” which mentions Malloy, fans and media continually asked about his Van Halen experience. This is Mitch’s story. Mitch Malloy: Van Halen’s Lost Boy.

Before Van Halen hired Gary Cherone in 1996, they first asked Mitch to be their singer. But as Mitch recalls, “When I saw Dave come out with them [on MTV], that was it for me. It was over. Everybody think Dave’s back in the band. I’m out!”

Never-heard Van Halen/Malloy piece: In 1996, Van Halen gave Malloy an instrumental, which he now recorded vocals to. It’s called “It’s the Right Time.” A clip from this song is at the end of the video above. Knowledgeable Van Halen fans will recognize the music from his track is a rougher demo of “That’s Why I Love You“, the unreleased Van Halen song from Van Halen III, with Gary Cherone. What do you think of it?

Malloy Singing “Panama” at 5150: Last year, and audio recording leaked of Mitch singing “Panama” with Van Halen. Listen to it here. What do you think of it?

More stuff to ponder: So Van Halen fans, what do you think of Mitch Malloy? Was he smart to decline Van Halen’s offer? If he didn’t decline, would Van Halen have actually gone through with it and released an album with Malloy as their singer? Would the band have faired better than they did with Gary Cherone?