My Introduction To The Mighty Van Halen (3/31/79)

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June 22, 2012 at 11:03 am Quote #16081


Don’t know that I’ve seen these before:

For more, go to:

For the complete bolg, go to:

“This hamburger don’t need no helper.” – DLR 5/17/15

June 22, 2012 at 11:08 am Quote #16083


Here’s the translation:

This photo was taken and shows the raw exuberance of a young David Lee Roth. While innocence is not a word we normally associate with Van Halen, although there was a term that “the world was on the tips of his fingers” during concerts in Logan. Everyone had the opportunity to at least see the show once a great band to catch one of his greatest moments in their early stages of his career.

All photos were taken by Mitch Hancock on March 31, 1979, in Logan, Utah.

From TheEditingRoom

By Doug Fox:

I was with Van Halen – a band I first saw at a concert 32 years ago last week – I’m here talking to my brain and recalling.

It is common knowledge that the group is in the studio recording a new studio album with original singer David Lee Roth. This is a gift not much talked about by fans of Van Halen. It has been the past 27 years since the last album by the band, and the last full album with Roth (1984, “MCMLXXXIV”), 13 years since the last studio recording of the band, also with the last complete any singer (1998 phase “3″, with Gary Cherone), and seven years since any new music of any kind (three new songs from the second reunion with vocalist Sammy Hagar in 2004).

So clearly, I had plenty of time to see and talk about these albums – not to mention the frequent changes of members and years of silence – to question my devotion to this little group of old Pasadena. Beyond just the fantastic music, I have determined that a lot of that here will be coming back in all my initial knowledge about the band.

There are moments of clarity in the life of each member that were rooted in our memory so complete as to almost be printed on the DNA.

Most people, for example, can tell you exactly where they were and what they were doing when they were world-changing events that occurred.

Personally, I think that this phenomenon also happens with music. I’ve always had a tendency to mark specific instances and periods of life based on some songs and when I first heard them.

But nothing prepared me for that day in the summer of 1978, when received my music theory relativity.

Living in Southern California at the time, the local radio stations hard rock of the day had been playing a trio of songs from a band from Los Angeles who had just released his debut album. There was something about these three songs that seemed to force my hand – as if drawn by a radius of a tractor – to mark the stereo volume, where a quick right turn would increase things to a more pleasing level.

Eruption: Eddie Van Halen posing in his classic guitar solo.

The songs in question were “Is not Talkin ” Bout Love,” “You Really Got Me” and “Runnin ‘With the Devil.” The band was Van Halen – And life as I knew he was about to change.

I clearly remember the day my brother and I went to the local record store to buy a cassette tape of this band for beginners. Being the older brother and sensible, I hedged my bets, let him buy it – thinking that if I ended up not liking the rest, at least I would not have risked my own hard earned money in what was still a large part of unknown entity. He ended up buying at the best price from $ 5. (Do not worry. Later I bought for a low price too, and most can now be found on vinyl and remastered CD.)

Leaving the record store, push the tape on the car stereo, turn the volume and went home. A short drive from Foothill Boulevard to Lowell Avenue in La Crescenta, hear a song, and we were entering the garage with the opening of “Runnin ‘With the Devil”, the track reached its conclusion by fire.

And that’s where the future has officially arrived – and was called “Eruption.”

The plan was to pop the tape was out of this plan, and continue to hear inside the house, but the second song had just begun, and neither one of us could imagine, even remotely, to reach the eject button.

To be honest, we were not exactly sure what we were hearing during the initial hearing. A torrent of notes that exploded out of the left speaker at a dizzying rate as we look at each other slack-jawed amazement and wondering aloud if what we heard was performed on the synthesizer or guitar.

And while I did not know exactly what I was hearing, I realized that the landscape of music as I knew it was changing before my very ears.

As we have seen, what we were experiencing was an explosion of one minute and 42 seconds of jelly that has changed the way guitar playing forever and signaled the arrival of a new sheriff of six strings: Eddie Van Halen.

David Lee Roth in the days of youth.

Later in the summer, our family moved to Utah where, in a shocking surprise, a statement that Van Halen would play there, resulted in nothing more than looks stunned – that the band had yet to break the charts radio stations in Salt Lake City. However, after I started attending college in the fall, I was back in familiar territory, such as Van Halen was a great favorite band among those in our dorm floor were, since most of my new friends were students from out of state. Well, all except one who is a longtime friend from California, Matt Yeates.

It was late in our first year (March 1979) we heard a radio ad and talk about a Van Halen concert at Utah State University in Logan – about two hours north of Provo, where we were going to school. But we were determined. I remember Matt and I go pick up the tickets – for our group of eight or so who wanted to participate. The day before the tickets were sold, and I went to Logan to camp and get one of the best places to show. When we got there we were first in line. Well, basically, we were across the front line – as no one else was there. We sat there for a few hours – no doubt talking about Matt’s love with the band Legs Diamond, a band he had always pimping as the next big thing – before anyone showed up at the ticket office, which is when they told us that there was no show because of a problem on the ticket printer, and they had been forced to postpone all ticket sales.

Tickets go on sale for just a few days later, and set up some good places in the seventh row. We were pumped.

The album Van Halen II was released on March 23, 1979 – so we had eight days to familiarize ourselves with the new material before the show. I still have the picture of us coming into the shop in locally owned – Remember that? – Near the school were listening to “Light Up the Sky” for the first time playing through the speakers of the record store as the store owner had put the new disk to play.

Michael Anthony playing his bass solo before starting “You’re No Good.”

March 31 finally arrived and the weather was terrible. I remember seeing a couple for hours in the car before the show amid a torrential downpour.

The band’s opening night was a band called Granati Brothers. [Read the story that the brothers Granati wrote about his experiences as an opening act for Van Halen]. Never heard of them? Not if he had heard. They jumped on stage with their poodle hairdos. This is very beautiful and was everything I remember about the whole band – albeit a few years ago I relembrasse through a pair of news in Pennsylvania (Motto: House of Granatis), where I remembered how they had become friends with the Van Halen after this year’s tour. But I digress.

The young Eddie Van Halen has been playing guitar for the future of a generation.

I’ve never been on the track behind a 747, when you take, but can not be different from the experience of seeing Van Halen to open a concert. The absolute power of “Light Up the Sky” was an eruption of amplifiers such as Van Halen did, took the stage was an experience to behold. What was a full race! It was a show unlike anything I had ever seen before. There was the technical wizardry of Eddie Van Halen on guitar, offset by exaggerated macho posing, high-pitched wails and in animated intros of songs of vocalist David Lee Roth. There was action all over the stage, augmented by Michael Anthony beating his bass and Alex Van Halen on drums (he himself has defined and put the big gong behind him to fire at the end of the show). It was powerful. It was funny. It was quite large. And I loved every minute of this show.

The best analogy I can come up with was to describe the experience that can be compared to the pivotal scene in the movie “Back to the Future” (“Back to the Future”), where everyone in the school of dance “Enchantment Under the Sea” and as a band member, Marty McFly starts raffle something about Chuck Berry before falling to the stage and play a cacophony of notes on the guitar, leaving everyone in the audience with stunned looks on their faces. (Is it a coincidence that at the beginning of the movie when Marty plays music from the future to scare the father to ask his mother to leave, the tape is labeled “Van Halen”? I think not.) Van Halen was ahead of time – both musically the point of view of a show.

A memory I wish I had, but could not be removed from the memory banks, was whether or not Eddie who played with his famous guitar “Shark” that night. He was using it in songs to play during the whole tour, then chances are good that he had used in our show as well. The guitar “Shark” is a guitar Ibanez Explorer Eddie did – with an arrangement clearly observed in search of perfect sound – the “brown sound”, as has been evidenced over the years with all its developments on guitar and related products and even on its own line of guitars – taking a chainsaw to, drastically alter your appearance and sound. The cut piece guitar guitar gave an appearance of Jaws (Shark)-esque with a slight, leading to his nickname. Of course, I started to get to become familiar with his collection of guitars until several years down the road, so it would not have resonated in me that night. Still, this guitar in particular has always fascinated me – it just looks cool – and that surrounds me is that I could have seen him play and just did not realize it at the time.

There is a bit of a mystery involving and that shows in Logan. To this day, the first concert in Logan – had the first appearance of Van Halen in Utah – do not appear in any lists of the band’s tour has already filed. I heard a rumor several years ago, supposedly from a former crew member of the band being back out to the road, then, that because of some bet, for some reason, Alex Van Halen said the band would never recognize this date tour. (I can not guarantee the source, but it is strange that the date of this remains to be off the list.)

Surfing in the air, Eddie: Let’s see if the brothers Granati can do it!

In a ridiculous note, a few years ago I read a comment that shows written in the student newspaper of Utah State University. The reviewer makes a waxed poetic about this great new band was honored at USU and put the certainty of being the next big thing in rock music. Unfortunately, he was talking about the Granati Brothers. He completely rejected the Van Halen. (Critics of the Rock … sigh … what they know) I really felt sorry for the sap who wrote this review. There was a future in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame that would be a ceremony that night, did not mention, arguably the greatest guitarist of his generation, and the poor guy is totally lost. A smell completely. Do not worry, I’m guessing that the writer has a successful career in the prediction of future on Wall Street.

Well, one thing I’m sure. The show took place. And I got the ticket and pictures to prove it. Not to mention, 32 years reflecting on the memories of that night was able to do.

David Lee Roth, Eddie Van Halen and Michael Anthony in happier times.

The photos, in fact, were taken by a friend of mine who was doing a photography course on campus at the time. We went to the dark room of the university and impressamos these images, and kept them all these years. Several fans captured the raw power and energy of a band of a young man who would become the biggest band in America over the next five years. (Mitch Hancock, wherever you are today – I salute you)

Eight days after the show Logan, Van Halen played on the second day of Califfornia (yes, with two f) World Music Festival in Los Angeles Coliseum, also appearing with Aerosmith, UFO, Toto, Mother’s Finest, Eddie Money, Brownsville and to the Boomtown Rats.

A little more than six months later, Matt Yeates and I and two friends went to the door of the first home of Eddie and Alex Van Halen when they were still small in Pasadena – on the band’s first appearance at the Great Western Forum – having a chat with his father, Jan Van Halen (a delightful character). Ah, but that’s a story for another day.

This is the story of my introduction to Van Halen … what is your?

Note: Included below the setlist of the show Logan. Also, some videos on YouTube that appeared in the last couple of years taken from the opening show of the tour in Fresno, California on March 25, 1979 – just six days before the show in Logan. This film is the closest thing available to and what I witnessed the first Saturday night in Logan. [See the movie here from Fresno in 1979]!

Eddie Van Halen inspired a whole generation of guitarists with his unique touch.

Van Halen
Utah State University
March 31, 1979

Light Up the Sky
Somebody Get Me a Doctor
Running With the Devil
Dance the Night Away
Beautiful Girls
On Fire
You’re No Good
Jamie’s Cryin ‘
Feel Your Love Tonight
Outta Love Again
Ice Cream Man
Is not Talkin ” Bout Love
Eddie Van Halen Guitar Solo
You Really Got Me

Encore I
Bottoms Up

Encore II
Atomic Punk

Performance time: 1 hour and 25 minutes.

“This hamburger don’t need no helper.” – DLR 5/17/15

June 22, 2012 at 12:59 pm Quote #16086


Thanks….I had some of these photos but in smaller sizes. Always nice to get an upgrade!

The poor folks play for keeps down here…They’re the living dead. Nobody rules these streets at night like Van Halen!!

June 22, 2012 at 6:22 pm Quote #16096


Seeing these pictures just reinstates for me that Eddie is not only the best guitarist in rock and roll, he’s the coolest looking mofo in the business! Thanks for posting this!

June 22, 2012 at 9:44 pm Quote #16098


Seeing these pictures just reinstates for me that Eddie is not only the best guitarist in rock and roll, he’s the coolest looking mofo in the business!Thanks for posting this!



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