Megadeth’s Dave Mustaine gave an interview to Full Metal Jackie and argued Sammy Hagar‘s Montrose era is way better than his Van Halen era.

Sammy Hagar rose to prominence with Montrose in the early 1970s. With Montrose, Hagar appeared on their first and second albums, which featured ‘Bad Motor Scooter,’ the first song the musician ever wrote. Due to conflicts between himself and Ronnie Montrose, the band fired Hagar. He then joined Van Halen in 1985. With Hagar at the front, Van Halen released a series of successful records. After enjoying a flourishing career with the band, the musician left in 1996 but returned from 2003 to 2005.

The Red Rocker later focused on his solo career and supergroups, Chickenfoot and the Circle. Apart from his projects, he worked with numerous other notable names in the rock and metal scene. More recently, Hagar collaborated with Megadeth on their upcoming ‘The Sick, the Dying… and the Dead!’ album. Scheduled to release on September 2, 2022, this album features a cover of Hagar’s ‘This Planet’s On Fire (Burn In Hell),’ with his vocals.

In an interview with Full Metal Jackie, Dave Mustaine touched upon their Sammy Hagar collab. Mustaine stated that he knew Hagar back when he played with Montrose. He then argued that he heard Hagar sing with Montrose, so his Van Halen tracks didn’t satisfy him because he saw what a great singer The Red Rocker was during his tenure with Montrose.

Speaking to Full Metal Jackie, Dave Mustaine said the following about Sammy Hagar:

“We did a cover song of one of Sammy’s songs. A lot of people didn’t know Sammy before he did his time in Van Halen. I know him from back when he played in Montrose and, after that, in his solo career. I was never convinced with the Van Halen tracks because I’d heard Sammy sing on Montrose, and that man can sing. Oh my God. He was one of my favorite singers forever and ever. ‘I Got the Fire’ is one of my favorite Montrose songs. It’s such a heavy song. Even Iron Maiden covered it.

I thought, ‘Wouldn’t it be great to do ‘This Planet’s on Fire’ by Sammy?’ I contacted him and asked him, ‘Would you mind singing on it and maybe putting down some guitars?’ So he returned and said, ‘Sure, I’ll sing on it. I ain’t playing guitar because I heard you two shredders, and you leave the stuff like it is.’ I was flattered because I think Sammy’s a great guitar player.”

According to Mustaine, Montrose’s ‘I Got the Fire’ is among his favorites, and he thought of covering ‘This Planet’s on Fire’ as a result. Although Mustaine asked Hagar to sing the vocals and play the guitar on the song, Hagar refused to play guitar as he believed Mustaine was better than him. So, he sang the vocals instead.