In an interview for Rock Talk, book author Greg Renoff talked about how Van Halen manager Ted Templeman reacted to the split of David Lee Roth from the band and Sammy Hagar replacing him and revealed Ted’s concerns about the future of Van Halen.
The author of the book named ‘Ted Templeman: A Platinum Producer’s Life in Music,’ Greg Renoff joined an interview for ‘Rock Talk With Mitch Lafon’ on Youtube. During the conversation, Renoff revealed the details of David Lee Roth’s split from Van Halen and being replaced by Sammy Hagar.
According to Greg’s statements, the manager of Van Halen, Ted Templeman, was not happy with Van Halen to break up, despite the common misconception of him being content with the situation.
Here’s how the Van Halen manager was actually thinking about the breakthrough changes in the band:
“For me, as a fan, I think anybody who’s read any interviews surrounding the whole situation with Sammy and Van Halen in the 1980s – Sammy joining the band – I think there was sort of a popular conception that Ted was happy to have Dave leave the band.
Dave was leaving, and Ted was like, ‘Great!’, or something like that, which, when I talked to Ted about that, he was, ‘I never wanted Van Halen to break up. I never wanted Dave to leave that band.'”
Furthermore, Greg Renoff stated Templeman had concerns about the future of Van Halen after Sammy Hagar joined the band:
“That really was kind of shocking to me, the way he said that – because I only could go by what was sort of out there as a narrative, and it was a very painful thing for Ted because he felt caught in the middle.
And when I talked to him there was a lot of emotion in his voice because he did have a lot of affection for Sammy. He had just done ‘VOA’ and had plans to do another album with Sammy to follow up ‘VOA.’
The plan was doing the record for Geffen, and you know, for Ted, there was something just magical and special about the original Van Halen; and to change that, even putting in a singer who Ted has enormous respect for, likes personally, considers a friend, was just not right.
I mean, I think that’s the thing I think was hard for him because I think he felt he really disappointed Sammy and it disappointed Ed and Alex as well because there was this notion that, ‘Why wouldn’t you want to produce our record with Sammy? You worked with Sammy, you discovered Sammy along with Ronnie Montrose in 1973.’
Like, ‘Why would you not want to do this record?’, and I think for Ted to stand his ground and say, ‘I can’t go into this acting as if this is Van Halen because it’s going to change, it’s different.'”
“I think he was right about the fact that obviously it was a very different-sounding record, but it was eye-opening for me, and Ted, when we would talk about it would be very impassioned about it, and we talked at great length about it.
Many, many times talking about just how he felt caught in the middle, and then even when he was doing ‘Eat ‘Em and Smile,’ which I thought was really fascinating that Ted said, ‘This is just a segway to get Dave back in Van Halen.’
Basically, when the two albums come out, ‘5150’ and ‘Eat ‘Em and Smile‘ and they do so well, Ted thought, ‘Well, this is a no-brainer. Now both guys, me, Ed, and Dave can come back to each other, nobody has to come back begging for the other person to come back, they both are able to come back from a position of strength and say let’s put this back together.’
And to be clear, Ted made clear to me that he didn’t really have the expectation that he was going to produce another Van Halen record necessarily, there had been a lot of static during ‘1984,’ and it was just sort of, I think Ted sort of saw his time may have passed. But he just thought these guys need to be together because there’s something special, and it didn’t happen.”
Click here to read the entire interview with Greg Renoff.