During an appearance on this past Tuesday's (August 8) episode of SiriusXM's "Trunk Nation With Eddie Trunk", legendary DEEP PURPLE vocalist/bassist Glenn Hughes elaborated on his revelation that Eddie Van Halen nearly asked him to join VAN HALEN back when the Southern California rock act was looking for a new singer nearly four decades ago following the departure of David Lee Roth. Glenn said (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): "So the story is I was at Eddie's [Van Halen] house in the early '90s. And if I may say so, Eddie was newly sober at that point. And we had a conversation about stuff from the '80s. Eddie's manager, Noel Monk, was my tour manager in TRAPEZE back in the early '70s. So Eddie said they were thinking about me prior to asking Sammy [Hagar] to come in. But the thing that stopped it was I wasn't the man I am today in the mid-'80s, as you know; we all know that now. So he thought maybe it would have been a good idea, but would Glenn be the right guy? Was he steady to do that? And they got Sammy in. So we'll never know. But it was an honor for Eddie to think that, you know, he would invite me to at least come down and have a sing. So, yeah, it would have been very, very interesting. But Eddie was very close, and I miss him dearly."
Hughes went on to say that Eddie was a "big" fan of Glenn's pre-DEEP PURPLE band TRAPEZE. "'Keepin' Time' was a VAN HALEN cover from TRAPEZE," Hughes said. "So, yeah, Eddie was a 'Burn' [DEEP PURPLE] fan.
Glenn also recalled his first encounter with Eddie, which he said took place four and a half decades ago. "1978 Thanksgiving, I found myself in Dallas, Texas," he said. "And I went to see BLACK SABBATH and there was an unknown band on the bill called VAN HALEN. I had not heard of them. They maybe had made a record. So I went down to the show early and I stood at the side of the stage, and lo and behold, I see this incredible band and this amazing guitar player. And, of course, their manager was my ex-tour manager. When they came off the stage, Noel Monk introduced me to the guys, and Eddie took me into a room and he had his guitar and he played some stuff to me. And ever since that day, Thanksgiving in '78, Eddie and I became very close. So throughout the years we'd get together often. He was over my house a few times, and we were we were good friends."
Eddie had repeatedly cited DEEP PURPLE as a musical influence, telling Billboard magazine in 2015 that "Burn" — which was written and recorded during Hughes's tenure with PURPLE — was one of his favorite guitar riffs of all time.
Hagar replaced Roth in VAN HALEN in 1985 and recorded four studio albums with the band — "5150", "OU812", "For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge" and "Balance" — all of which topped the U.S. chart. The highest-charting Roth-led VAN HALEN album was a No. 2, and it took until "1984" to achieve that. (2012's "A Different Kind Of Truth" also landed at No. 2.)
Eddie died in October 2020 at St. John's Hospital in Santa Monica, California. The iconic VAN HALEN axeman passed away from complications due to cancer, his son confirmed.
Later this month, Hughes will embark on a U.S. tour celebrating music from "Burn" and other classic hits from DEEP PURPLE's rich back catalog, a run of shows that will mostly see him co-headlining with guitar great Yngwie Malmsteen.
Billed as "Glenn Hughes Performs The 50th Anniversary Of Deep Purple's Burn Live", Hughes will perform classic hits from the legendary album, and the addition of DEEP PURPLE MKIII and MKIV songs.
Glenn's band will feature Søren Andersen (guitar),Ash Sheehan (drums) and Ed Roth (keyboards).