Face of a Franchise: VH Screamer!

[face of a franchise presents two individuals that’ve fulfilled the same role. your task — choose the better of the two and defend your choice in the rancor pit that is the comments section]

This one’s been debated so many times that I almost didn’t write the post. But then I started thinking about the the potential responses the creatures that frequent OL would drop, and I couldn’t help myself. This one might get ugly.

And I’m looking forward to it.

Since I only listen to Cherone-era Van Halen, I had to do a little research. From what I’ve gathered, Van Halen had two singers before Gary Cherone and the relationships with both of them were somewhat tumultuous. So who were these jabronis? Which one was better? Let’s take a look!

David Lee Roth was Van Halen’s first singer, rocking with them from 1974-1985 (and then rejoining four years ago). In addition to Eddie Van Halen’s groundbreaking guitar work, many attribute the band’s initial success to Roth’s wild personality and onstage antics. With a beautiful blond mane atop his head and leather pants hugging his butt, Roth would grace the stage with leapfrogs, high-kicks, splits, and suggestive gyrations. Also, the dude had some pipes and penned some catchy lyrics.

After David Lee Roth and Van Halen split for whatever bullshit reasons bands can’t stay together, Sammy Hagar was brought into the fold. Unofficially dubbed Van Hagar, the band continued to release a slew of critically and commercially successful albums. However, a schism was created amongst the fans; while many never fully accepted him as the new singer, others were able to embrace Sammy and continue riding the Van Halen roller coaster. Excepting a brief two-year reunion that ended poorly, Sammy Hagar fronted the band until 1996.

Here we have it, one of rock & roll’s greatest debates – who is the better Van Halen singer? Is it David Lee Roth, who helped get the band off the ground by lending his voice to what would become classic albums? Or is it Sammy Hagar, the man who enabled Van Halen to continue producing a steady stream of consistent rockage?

I still say Gary Cherone’s best.

What do you think?