Michael Anthony Says He Spoke With Alex Van Halen Earlier This Year
There's a bond between a bassist and a drummer that often goes deeper than those shared by the other players in the band — and it sounds like Michael Anthony and Alex Van Halen's connection hasn't been completely severed even after all the years of fallout stemming from Anthony's unceremonious firing from Van Halen.
As Anthony revealed during a recent appearance on Eddie Trunk's SiriusXM show Trunk Nation (via Blabbermouth), the band's old rhythm section reunited earlier this year — albeit only on the phone, and only for a brief conversation that didn't get into any of the "heavy" stuff surrounding Anthony's exit from the lineup. Although the end result might be a little frustrating for fans hoping to see a reunion, for Anthony, it sounds like it was more than enough to reconnect with a friend.
The catalyst for the conversation, explained Anthony, was a mutual friend named Craig DeFalco, who's served as a tour tech for both musicians. DeFalco paid Anthony a visit and the two took a boat ride; after a couple of cocktails, talk turned to fond remembrances of the past. "Next thing you know, we were talking about the band and the good old days and all that stuff. 'Cause he did, I think, at least two or three Van Halen tours with me back in the '80s," said Anthony. "So we're talking, and next thing you know, I've got him holding his iPhone up and I'm shooting a video going, 'Hey, Alex, man …,' just talking about the good times and everything that's going on now."
DeFalco dutifully passed it along, and later that night, Anthony said DeFalco's phone rang, with Van Halen on the other end asking to speak with his former bassist. "Next thing I know, [Craig] is handing me the phone and goes, 'Here, Al wants to talk to you.' And I'm, like, 'What?' And this was this past May. And I hadn't spoken to Alex in, like, 10 years, I think — 10 or 11 years," he continued. "It was just great to talk to him. We talked for about 20 minutes, and had a great conversation — just about life in general and getting older and what's going on around us in the music industry. And it was actually really great talking to him."
That being said, it's worth noting that Anthony dashed some cold water on the notion that the tweets traded by Eddie Van Halen and Sammy Hagar might mean Anthony and Hagar are headed back to Van Halen. In fact, Anthony thinks Van Halen's wife might be the one who really tweeted on his behalf — and in any event, he says that while he's willing to give it a shot, he has no reason to think there'll be a reunion.
"In some ways, I'm kind of over it, only because you can only hold your breath for so long," he admitted before emphasizing that he's a "never-say-never" type of person. "I love going out and playing the music. And if we did it, though, it would have to be none of this four separate planes and four separate this and that, and you only see them onstage. ... I don't know if it can ever be a brotherhood like it was before."
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