Watch Wolfgang Van Halen shred like a master on a pair of Van Halen classics

Wolfgang Can Halen onstage in LA with Justin Hawkins, Dave Grohl and Josh Freese
(Image credit: blinditachil7)

The dust may have settled after the second Taylor Hawkins Tribute Concert, held yesterday at the Kia Forum in Los Angeles, and it can be safely said that Dave Grohl's uncanny knack for curating magic continued.

One beneficiary was Wolfgang Van Halen, still very apparently fresh after his appearance at the first Taylor Hawkins Tribute Concert, held at London's Wembley Stadium earlier this month. There he was joined by Grohl on bass, Josh Freese on drums and Darkness frontman Justin Hawkins for an electrifying blast through two Van Halen classics: On Fire from Van Halen's debut album and Hot For Teacher from sixth album 1984.

In Los Angeles it was the same line-up of musicians, although On Fire was a no-show. Stepping in to replace it was the classic Panama, also taken from 1984. And throughout the song – and on Hot For Teacher – Wolfgang Van Halen once again demonstrated his uncanny ability to mimic his late father's timing and tone. 

Meanwhile, Justin Hawkins' was dressed in a fringed catsuit that must have been a nod to former Van Halen frontman David Lee Roth, with a golden version of Taylor Hawkins' Hawk tattoo embroidered on the back. Fan-shot footage of both songs can be seen below.

In the days after the Wembley show, Wolfgang Van Halen shared his take on the iconic Van Halen instrumental Eruption, He explained it was his way of marking 45 years since the track was recorded at Sunset Sound studio in Hollywood during the sessions for the band's debut album.

Every song and special guest appearance from the Taylor Hawkins Tribute Concert in Los Angeles.

The Taylor Hawkins tribute show from Wembley Stadium, London, is available to watch on-demand with a Paramount+subscription.

Fraser Lewry

Online Editor at Louder/Classic Rock magazine since 2014. 38 years in music industry, online for 25. Also bylines for: Metal Hammer, Prog Magazine, The Word Magazine, The Guardian, The New Statesman, Saga, Music365. Former Head of Music at Xfm Radio, A&R at Fiction Records, early blogger, ex-roadie, published author. Once appeared in a Cure video dressed as a cowboy, and thinks any situation can be improved by the introduction of cats. Favourite Serbian trumpeter: Dejan Petrović.