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They really got them
Van Halen rolls into Baltimore to rock the arena

by Timothy Tilghman

This gig had already been postponed twice. Eddie Van Halen had to contend with another health crisis. Finally on Thursday, May 15, 2008, Van Halen took the stage at the antiquated 1st Mariner Arena in Baltimore, Maryland. The audience was revved up and the reunited group sans bassist Michael Anthony was visibly pleased to appear in Charm City.

With the tattered resewn past of Van Halen, their sordid saga became a Soap Opera as the band morphed through several permutations. The animated Diamond David Lee Roth was their first vocalist who gambled on an inflated solo career. Sammy Hagar joined the fold in 1985, and revitalized their creative output. Then in 1997, Gary Cherone came on board to sing vocals, but that third vehicle just ran out of juice.

Van Hagar regrouped with Sammy for a spectacular reunion tour in 2004. The band was back on top of their game. Eddie's health issues had an impact, but the infamous guitarist was standing tall to play another day. Once again, interpersonal relationships became dicey and a deal was ironed out to welcome back Roth as vocalist, only now the legendary founding bassist was replaced by Eddie's teenage son Wolfgang Van Halen to handle bass guitar chores on the tour!

This fact didn't stop Van Halen fans from buying up tickets to catch the Van Trio act live with Wolfie on bass. The reunion receipts indicate the tour has been successful. The band dipped deep into their earlier catalogue of material and has staged an engaging performance. Clearly, Roth is energized to be back in the saddle riding a wave of popularity once again.

Baltimore setlist: You Really Got Me * I'm The One * Runnin' With The Devil * Romeo Delight > Magic Bus * Somebody Get Me A Doctor * Beautiful Girls * Dance The Night Away * Atomic Punk * Everybody Wants Some * So This Is Love? * Mean Street * Pretty Woman * Drum solo * Unchained * I'll Wait * And The Cradle Will Rock > Smoke On The Water * Hot For Teacher * Little Dreamer * Little Guitars * Jaime's Cryin' * Ice Cream Man * Panama * Eruption * Ain't Talking 'Bout Love * Encore: 1984 > Jump

RockonTour   Issue #81
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