Michael Anthony Reveals More About Scrapped Van Halen Reunion
"They were gonna try to plan a thing for this summer," Anthony stated while appearing on the SiriusXM radio show 'Trunk Nation.' "And for whatever reason… I was never… My people were never… They never got in touch with us about any kind of a contract or any kind of a meeting to discuss or whatever. And the next thing I knew, the plug got pulled on it."
Over the past few years, Anthony has spent much of his time touring in the Circle alongside another former Van Halen member, Sammy Hagar. Hagar previously revealed that Anthony had been contacted about a reunion, something the bass player confirmed during his 'Trunk Nation' interview. Anthony went on to say that the reason the Circle is on a planned break now was because this is when Van Halen was supposed to be in pre-production rehearsals for the proposed tour.
"I spoke with [Van Halen's manager] Irving Azoff last October — that's when I first heard from him — and he asked if I would be interested in any kind of a reunion, and I told him, I said, 'Yeah.' I was finishing up a couple of shows with Sammy and I said, 'Yeah, I'd be interested to hear what you guys have going on.'"
The bassist was hopeful a reunion would work out, but things did not progress well after that initial phone call. "I never heard a call back. And then, right after the first of the year, I got… [singer] David Lee Roth's, Dave's business manager or lawyer, or something, got ahold of me about a meeting or something. And so at that point, I gave it over to our manager, because I didn't wanna start getting in this whole thing — I wanted to do it the correct way, especially after the way things went for me in 2004.”
Anthony infamously took a pay cut and signed away his rights to the band name and logo in order to participate in Van Halen’s 2004 tour. The experience created tension between the bass player and his former bandmates that has lasted more than a decade. Anthony was not invited to be a part of Van Halen’s subsequent reunions, with Eddie Van Halen's son Wolfgang replacing him on bass.
The latest rumors regarding a reunion of the original Van Halen lineup started in 2018. Roth teased he’d be doing “the original thing” in the summer, alluding to a 2019 stadium tour. Though whispers of Van Halen mending their relationship with Anthony continued to swirl, the bassist continued to downplay the likelihood of a reconciliation.