Sunday, November 30, 2008


Damn, I should be out skiing today! It's been dumping in the mountains for the last two days, with at least a couple feet having fallen at Loveland ski area. Alas, I must stay home because the wife flew out to DC this morning (I don't want to imagine what that flight will be like considering the weather she'll be flying through), leaving me to take care of my daughter today (my son's stayed behind with the inlaws in Wyoming). There's about five inches of snow on the ground outside the house and it's still coming down. The first heavy snowfall of the year, for both down here and in the mountains.

It was during one of these big dumping storms in early 2007 that I was sitting in the truck listening to Van Halen that I vowed to see them live in concert whenever to come back around. I would have been dancing outside with the stereo cranked were it not for the foot+ of powder covering the ground and the blowing snow that would have quickly filled the truck interior. My dream came true later in the year when VH announced the tour, then backed out of it, then committed a second time, leading to December 1, 2007 when I saw them in Portland Oregon.

In recognition of that one year anniversary, I pulled out Van Halen's December 1, 2007 show at the Rose Garden in Portland Oregon. Popped it into the stereo and was disappointed to learn that the quality of the recording was so poor that I decided against listening to it. What I'll need to do is remaster the sound to improve its playability and burn another CD set for future use.

I return to Portland in a few days to visit some friends. I hope to spend Thursday and Friday skiing, the location to be decided upon based on the best snow available. Looking at the webcams for WA and OR ski areas indicates that they have received very little snow, with several of the mountains hoping to open up by mid December. I'm leaving the good snow in Colorado to ski snow patches and rocks in the Pacific northwest. Hope they too get dumped on in the next few days.

Mind wrapped in music
His sanity on the line
Nothing feels the same

You really got me
Don't know where I'm goin'
Follows to its end

Wants to believe
Angels wait in the heavens
Reunion of friends

One in a million
Begins to know how it feels
Friends going one by one
After dumping the Rose Garden concert, Saturday night's show turned out to be disc 1 of Van Halen's The Best of Both Worlds album.

This is what Wikipedia says about the album:

"The Best of Both Worlds is a greatest hits album by American hard rock band Van Halen, released in 2004. The title "The Best of Both Worlds" references both their song of the same name, and the fact that the album has the greatest songs from their two main vocalists David Lee Roth and Sammy Hagar. The album featured three brand new songs from the band with Hagar vocals, but Eddie Van Halen took over the bass work typically done by Michael Anthony. It featured no songs from the band's last studio album, Van Halen III, which featured Gary Cherone on vocals."

It was great listening to the clean, crisp sounds of a studio album. But albums and song compilations lack the spontaneity and energy of a recorded concert. I'd much rather listen to a good concert recording instead since it is of an actual event, performed before an audience. The purpose of my virtual concerts are to get into the mood and share that experience as closely as possible.

Listening to The Best of Both Worlds allows one to more clearly understand the differences in Dave's and Sammy's styles, and how the sound of the band changed with the transition from one to the other. Ones more visceral and gritty, the other more polished and thoughtful. Both are Van Halen, both are good, all have Eddie leading the show with his killer guitar. Click on the picture of Eddie and Valerie below, "Solid As A Rock" to read what Eddie has to say about his split with Dave and his new style of music as he began the move to Van Halen II.

I found a bunch of high quality photos of Eddie and Valerie Bertinelli taken by LIFE magazine photographers. They'll show up in the blog posted at a later date.

They got married on April 11, 1981. They had a son, Wolfgang "Wolfie" William Van Halen, on March 16, 1991. On July 9, 2002, they announced that they had been separated since October 2001. She filed for divorce on December 5, 2005 which was finalized on December 20, 2007. Valerie admitting they split because they were both unfaithful. In an interview with Oprah Winfrey, Valerie acknowledged that both she and Eddie were to blame for the marriage breakdown. The 47-year-old says, "I cheated. He claims to this day that I cheated first, but I don't know. I don't know about the timing."

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