Van Halen Engineer Threatened To Burn 5150 Tapes

(Classic Rock) Foreigner guitarist Mick Jones has recalled his "crazy sh*t" experience of producing Van Halen's first album with Sammy Hagar. He had to contend with an engineer who didn't want him there and even threatened to burn the master tapes at one point.

He was hired to work on 5150 after Van Halen split with David Lee Roth but before they started in late 1985, old friend Hagar gave him a word of warning.

Jones tells Ultimate Classic Rock: "Sammy picked me up at the hotel. We were driving to Eddie's studio and we were talking about the old days. Finally he said, 'I've got to tell you, Mick, all of that was wild and crazy but we're just about to walk into another dimension of that. I wasn't going to tell you, but you'd better get ready for some crazy sh*t now.'"

He ran into issues with engineer Donn Landee, who'd worked on all six of Van Halen's previous albums with producer Ted Templeman. "Here was I, walking in from a completely different place," Jones says. "I got a feeling at the beginning from Donn he wasn't particularly thrilled to see me, I don't think.

"We went through some crazy times. The engineer locked himself in the studio for a day and threatened to burn the tapes. It was a real standoff, you know? It was touch and go whether the tapes were going to survive." more.

Classic Rock Magazine is an official news provider for antiMusic.com.
Copyright Classic Rock Magazine- Excerpted here with permission.

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