Van Halen Rising: How a Southern California Backyard Party Band Saved Heavy Metal is a new book coming this October that solely focuses on Van Halen’s incredible rise during the ‘70s.
We have an advance copy, and trust us — this book is absolutely loaded with wild and interesting details on Van Halen’s beginnings that even the most knowledgeable fans have never heard. It’s a vivid and energetic history of Van Halen’s legendary early years. It’s a MUST-HAVE.
Six years in the making, this is the first book to reveal the debauched details of the bands beginnings, from gonzo backyard parties to neon nights of rock glory on the Sunset Strip.
Drawing on more than 230 original interviews — including with former Van Halen bassist Michael Anthony and power players like Pete Angelus, Marshall Berle, Donn Landee, Ted Templeman, and Neil Zlozower — Van Halen Rising is the first book to tell the untold story of how these rock legends made the unlikely journey from Pasadena, California, to the worldwide stage.
As for photos, at contains over 30 never before published photos dating back to the days of Mammoth and Red Ball Jet. All from the mid to late ’70s.
Van Halen Rising traces VH’s transformation from a backyard party band to a stadium act that captivated the rock world in 1978.
After years of gigging everywhere from suburban backyards to dive bars, Van Halen — led by frontman extraordinaire David Lee Roth and guitar virtuoso Edward Van Halen — had the songs, the swagger, and the talent to turn the rock world on its ear. The quartet’s classic 1978 debut, Van Halen, sold more than a million copies within months of release and rocketed the band to the stratosphere of rock success. On tour, Van Halen’s high-energy show wowed audiences and prompted headlining acts like Black Sabbath to concede that they’d been blown off the stage. By the year’s end, Van Halen had established themselves as superstars and reinvigorated heavy metal in the process.
If you’ve ever wondered what it was like to see Van Halen play a massive backyard party, host a rowdy wet-t-shirt contest, perform on the legendary Sunset Strip, and blow rock legends Black Sabbath off the stage, this is the book for you.
About the Author: Greg Renoff earned his Ph.D. in American history from Brandeis University and is the author of The Big Tent: The Traveling Circus in Georgia, 1820–1930. He lives in Tulsa, Oklahoma, with his wife and two daughters.
“I really loved reading Van Halen Rising. I couldn’t believe the insight Renoff has into the production process behind the making of Van Halen’s debut. He truly gets it! The book is fantastic.”
— Ted Templeman, Grammy-winning music producer for Van Halen and David Lee Roth
“From the outset of Van Halen Rising, it’s clear Greg Renoff reveres the mighty foursome as much as their most ardent fan. With devoted accuracy, Renoff takes us back to the early seventies, when Pasadena kids literally danced in the streets to get a glimpse of their home-town heroes, while music industry execs proclaimed Van Halen had ‘no commercial potential.’ Van Halen Rising delves into the years of practice and perseverance that led to the ‘overnight success’ of Van Halen’s debut album, one of the most successful in music history. Renoff’s writing is consistently punchy and compelling, like Van Halen at its finest. If you’ve got it bad, got it bad, got it bad for Van Halen, get Van Halen Rising.”
— Martha Quinn, original MTV VJ, Sirius XM host
“I had a blast reading Van Halen Rising. Throughout my teen years, there were few things that meant as much to me as the first six Van Halen albums and the original line up of the band. Greg Renoff takes us back to the beginning of all that, to how Dave, Eddie, Alex, and Michael came to form the group, to what the rock world looked like at the time, and to that grit and commitment it took for them to break through. He also puts us right there in Pasadena, at the backyard parties where the big rock sound was born. If you are a Van Halen fan, a real Van Halen fan, this book is a must read.”
— Brian Koppelman, screenwriter of Rounders and Ocean’s Thirteen, director of Solitary Man, and podcaster at The Moment
“I thought I knew a lot about Van Halen, until I read this book. It’s exceedingly rare to find such a comprehensive portrait of any band’s pre-history, even for canonical groups like the Beatles and Led Zeppelin. So to stumble across this level of research about the early days of VH is like hearing studio-quality demos of songs you did not even know existed.”
— Chuck Klosterman, author of Fargo Rock City and Killing Yourself to Live
Author Greg Renoff is offering signed copies exclusively at Van Halen Store. Pre-order now and your choice of a signed or unsigned copy will be in your hands next month! (Ships approximately Sept 15th). ORDER NOW!