David Lee Roth recently hired two new singers to help him perform Van Halen classics on tour, but fired them just before kicking off his run of Las Vegas shows. The Las Vegas Review Journal reports that Tyriq Johnson of Santa Fe & The Fat City Horns and the Earth Wind & Fire tribute act Serpentine Fire; and Bruce Williams, late of The Temptations, were the two singers.
They would have been helpful, as Michael Anthony’s backing harmonies were a key part of Van Halen’s live vocal sound along with Eddie Van Halen, with Wolfgang Van Halen filling the Anthony backing vocals role in recent years. David Lee Roth was told to ‘retire’ by some fans after forgetting lyrics to a hit song.
Ziggy Small posted on VHLinks.com, “I do understand a voice will go south as one gets older. Typically ones voice goes lower though. Dave on the other hand has progressively tried to sing higher since 2007. That’s my issue. I do understand he isn’t going to sound like 2007 Dave. Let alone 1987 Dave. However what he does to Dance the Night Away isn’t due to his age. Some of his new vocal melodies in other songs that go above the range of the recording, don’t work either.
When he keeps it low, its fine for his age and his limitations. However its what he thinks he can do or sounds good is the issue. His flirtation with the upper register is akin to Eddie’s use of the sustainer. Every once in a while its ok to try something new. However using it like Kirk Hammets wah wah is overkill.” Eddie Van Halen’s family recently made a ‘collapsing’ claim.