Comments made by ex-Van Halen vocalist Sammy Hagar in a Rolling Stone interview conducted in May recently began making the rounds. Hagar said in the interview he'd "rather personally get sick and even die, if that’s what it takes" regarding getting the economy started again during the COVID-19 crisis, later adding "there may be a time where we have to sacrifice." He's since walked those comments back a bit.
On June 25, Hagar clarified in a separate statement that the Rolling Stone interview was older and "it's about getting back to work in a safe and responsible way and getting this economy rolling again."
"Hey, Sammy here. Earlier in the week Rolling Stone ran a compilation piece from their Quarantine Q&A series," said Hagar. "I did that interview a month and a half ago, things change very fast right now, so I wanted to clarify and put a few things into context now.
"I did that interview May 8th when we were already several weeks into the stay-at-home, which my family and I took very seriously, and things were starting to look up, the curve was beginning flattening. So when I was asked if I'd be comfortable enough to get back onstage before a vaccine was out, I was cautiously optimistic. I said, 'Yeah, not too soon. I want to make sure it's not escalating. When it's declining and seems to be going away.'
"Big picture, it's about getting back to work in a safe and responsible way and getting this economy rolling again. I will do my part. I stand by that. I employ 200 people directly and when we tour even more. Like everything today, it's a watch and see over the next few months but we remain cautiously optimistic that with the right improvements and safety measures in place, we might be able to play shows this year. That said, as things change, for the better or worse, we will appropriately adjust our plans."
So maybe not as extreme, though who knows how that initial interview went and what actually made it to publication. Still, it's nice to know Hagar isn't ready to start throwing bodies into the capitalism machine.