Dave Mustaine Thinks Sammy Hagar Was Bigger As A Solo Artist

In a recent interview with Rock&Pop Paraguay, the iconic frontman of Megadeth, Dave Mustaine, delved into the influences that shaped his early musical journey. Mustaine expressed admiration for Sammy Hagar’s distinctive voice and praised his contributions to Montrose, recalling a personal connection to Hagar’s music.

Reflecting on his pre-Metallica days, Mustaine revealed, “He’s a guy that I absolutely loved his voice, and this was somebody I played ‘This Planet’s on Fire’ in the band I was in before Metallica.” Mustaine’s affinity for Hagar’s guitar prowess was evident, particularly in the context of the non-Montrose track “This Planet’s on Fire.” He acknowledged Hagar’s transition into a solo career, noting, “So, after Sammy left Montrose, he went out solo, and he did the Sammy Hagar thing.”

Despite acknowledging Montrose’s rich catalog of hits such as ‘Rock Candy’ and ‘Rock the Nation,’ Mustaine asserted his belief that Sammy Hagar achieved greater prominence as a solo artist. Mustaine remarked, “I think he was bigger as a solo artist than he ever was with Montrose.”

However, when the conversation shifted to Hagar’s tenure as the vocalist for Van Halen, Mustaine revealed a nuanced perspective. In a previous 2022 interview with Classic Rock, Mustaine expressed reservations about singers changing within bands, deeming it a potentially “weird” phenomenon. Drawing a parallel to Axl Rose temporarily fronting AC/DC, Mustaine opined, “Most often you can change some of the players in the band, but you can’t change the voice. Look at Van Halen. I love Sammy Hagar, but for me, him being in Van Halen makes as much sense as Axl Rose being in AC/DC.”

Mustaine’s insights provide a unique perspective on the dynamics of bands and the impact of vocal changes, illustrating his deep appreciation for the intricate elements that contribute to the identity of a musical ensemble.

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