The first leg of Van Halen’s long-awaited reunion tour with frontman David Lee Roth will kick off Sept. 27 in Charlotte, N.C., and run through Dec. 11 in Calgary, Alberta. Tickets for the trek, announced today at a Los Angeles media gathering, go on sale beginning Saturday (Aug. 18) via LiveNation.com.
A proposed summer amphitheater tour by the group, first tipped here in late January, never got off the ground, with guitarist Eddie Van Halen entering a rehabilitation facility for undisclosed reasons in March.
Roth has not toured with the act in more than two decades; the bass spot formerly occupied by Michael Anthony will be filled by Eddie Van Halen’s teenage son, Wolfgang.
“It’s a new band,” Roth said. “I’ve done more rehearsal in the last four months than I’ve done in the past 20 summers. The whole sound is better than it has ever been.”
Roth added, “It was Wolf who picked the song list, and we’ve got close to 25 of your greatest hits — all the favorites that you’ve been hearing tearing out of the back of a pickup truck at the Burger King drive-through for how many summertimes. It’s all very well intact — the same sh*tty attitude but with a whole new look.”
Various allusions were made to a potential new Van Halen studio album, which would be the band’s first with Roth since the seminal “1984.”
“There’s a high standard here,” Roth said. “We could waddle out there and halfway do it. A band like this could totally come in after an absence of this amount of time and get away with a lot, if we only do one tour. That’s not our ambition. This is not like the Police. The idea is that it will continue on and on, and you have to get a good start.”
“None of us want to give you less than our best, and we are at our best,” Eddie Van Halen added.
For more on today’s Van Halen announcement, visit the Billboard blog at JadedInsider.com.
Here are Van Halen’s tour dates:
Sept. 27: Charlotte, N.C. (Bobcats Arena)
Sept. 29: Greensboro, N.C. (Coliseum)
Oct. 1: Philadelphia (Wachovia Center)
Oct. 7: Toronto (Air Canada Centre)
Oct. 10: Cleveland (Quicken Loans Arena)
Oct. 14: Indianapolis (Conseco Fieldhouse)
Oct. 16: Chicago (Allstate Arena)
Oct. 18: Chicago (United Center)
Oct. 22: Auburn Hills, Mich. (Palace of Auburn Hills)
Oct. 24: Minneapolis (Target Center)
Oct. 26: Kansas City, Mo. (Sprint Center)
Oct. 28: St. Louis (Scottrade Center)
Oct. 30: Boston (TD Banknorth Garden)
Nov. 3: East Rutherford, N.J. (Continental Airlines Arena)
Nov. 13: New York (Madison Square Garden)
Nov. 20: Los Angeles (Staples Center)
Nov. 23: Glendale, Ariz. (Jobing.com Arena)
Nov. 25: San Diego (Cox Arena)
Nov. 27: Sacramento, Calif. (Arco Arena)
Nov. 29: San Jose, Calif. (HP Pavilion)
Dec. 1: Portland, Ore. (Rose Garden)
Dec. 3: Seattle (Key Arena)
Dec. 5: Vancouver (GM Place)
Dec. 9: Edmonton, Alberta (Rexall Palace)
Dec. 11: Calgary, Alberta (Pengrowth Saddledome)