Former Van Halen Manager Noel Monk Talks Runnin with The Devil

Noel Monk, the manager who shepherded Van Halen from obscurity to rock stardom goes behind the scenes to tell the complete, unadulterated story of David Lee Roth, Eddie Van Halen, and the legendary band that changed rock music in his book Runnin’ With The Devil: A Backstage Pass To The Wild Times, Loud Rock, And The Down And Dirty Truth Behind The Making Of Van Halen. Monk is featured in a new story published by Forbes.com. An excerpt is available below:

If a book about the world’s most hard-partying band can have a truly heartbreaking moment, Runnin’ With The Devil’s takes place in the middle of their 1984 tour. Van Halen is at the height of it success, with a monster album (also called 1984) and the singles “Jump” and “Panama” receiving enormous airplay on radio and MTV. Years ago as kids, playing in those Pasadena backyards, they agreed to be true partners, sharing all the income equally. Now playing to sold out stadiums, that arrangement no longer suited everyone. David Lee Roth and Eddie Van Halen wrote the band’s songs, and drummer Alex Van Halen had the protection of his brother Eddie — which left bass player Michael Anthony to take the blow. He was asked to give up his royalties, not just moving forward, but pre-dated to before the release of the current album. “In all my years in the business, it was the most disgusting thing I ever saw,” says Monk, still filled with revulsion, as though it happened yesterday. “They didn’t just cut him out, they did it in the middle of one of their biggest records. He was the nicest guy in the world and they didn’t even let him get the benefit of that album. He lost millions. MILLIONS. My stomach turned flips.”

After that tour, Monk’s own time with Van Halen came to a close. For all his hard work in making the band money, the one person he had neglected to protect was himself — for 7 years he had managed the band on a month-to-month contract. “They got greedy. ‘Let’s get rid of Noel and we’ll get 20% more,'” says Monk. “They even did a line audit for all 7 years, and to rub my nose in it they made me pay for my share of that. Not a penny was out of place.” Soon after, David Lee Roth left the band and was replaced by Sammy Hagar, but for Monk, the original lineup remains the one true band. “If you take away Eddie, Dave is not Van Halen. If you take away Dave, Eddie is not Van Halen.” Monk hasn’t spoken to any of the group members since leaving, but is now able to enjoy the music and remember the good times. “We drove on buses for thousands of miles, you can’t do that and not get along. I loved Eddie. He was my closest relationship in the band. He was incredibly naive, but he was brilliant.” I reminded Monk that an intoxicated Eddie had once shoved him across a slippery dressing room floor into a door knob, which required a hospital visit. “So I got some stitches, big deal,” says Monk. “I’ve been shot at by bootleggers. So Eddie pushed me and I slid. You’ve got to take a beating sometimes to get your money.”

Go to this location for the complete story.

David Lee Roth recently returned to Twitter for the first time since last October to weigh in, as only he could, on Noel Monk’s new book, only available at the Van Halen Store. Roth posted the Tweets below, “in anticipation of inevitable inquiries & questions posed in regard to the publication of this “book””:

In anticipation of inevitable inquiries & questions posed to David Lee Roth in regard to the publication of this “book”… pic.twitter.com/63VTlVz6gh

— David Lee Roth (@DavidLeeRoth)
June 20, 2017

In anticipation of inevitable inquiries & questions posed to David Lee Roth in regard to the publication of this “book”… pic.twitter.com/63VTlVz6gh

Mr. Roth’s responses are as follows:
Answer No. 1: Yes
Answer No. 2: Probably
Answer No. 3: My lawyer says I can’t remember.

— David Lee Roth (@DavidLeeRoth)
June 20, 2017

Mr. Roth’s responses are as follows:
Answer No. 1: Yes
Answer No. 2: Probably
Answer No. 3: My lawyer says I can’t remember.

Final response: What a long great trip it’s been, stay frosty.

— David Lee Roth (@DavidLeeRoth)
June 20, 2017

Final response: What a long great trip it’s been, stay frosty.

Beginning in 1978, Van Halen’s rise was one of the most thrilling the rock world had ever seen—their mythos an epic party with a sweaty, sexy, finger-tapping guitar solo as an encore. During this infamous run of success, debauchery, and drama, few people were closer to the band than their manager, Noel Monk. A man who’d worked with some of rock’s biggest and most notorious names, Monk spent seven years with Van Halen, serving initially as their tour manager then as their personal manager until 1985, when he and David Lee Roth exited as controversy, infighting, and egos consumed the band.

Now, for the first time, Monk shares his side of the band’s rapid ascent and abrupt halt, both of which left rock music forever changed. During his time behind the scenes, he saw it all and lived to tell the tale, helping the band grow from club-performing novices to hardened veterans who sold out stadiums. Lifting back the curtain on one of the great untold stories of rock music, Monk details the most outrageous escapades from his time as confidant, fixer, and promoter—from hotel room destruction to outrageous backstage behavior to Eddie Van Halen’s high-profile marriage to Valerie Bertinelli to the incredible drug use and drinking that would ultimately fuel the conflict between the band members.

More than just presenting a portrait of sex and drugs—though there’s plenty of both—Monk goes behind the legend of Eddie Van Halen, bringing into focus the unique combination of talent, vision, hardship, and naiveté that not only shaped one of the greatest rock guitarists of all time, but also made him vulnerable to the trappings of fame. Monk also sheds light on a breakup long shrouded in rumor and animosity, telling the story of David Lee Roth’s departure as he saw it and explaining how a band at the height of their powers found themselves struggling in vain to hold it all together.

Complete with sixteen color pages of never-before-seen photos of life with the band, Runnin’ with the Devil offers Monk’s backstage view of Van Halen’s journey from obscurity to headliners, only to watch it all fall apart. Messy, loud, and most of all fun, this is a look inside Van Halen unlike any you’ve ever seen.

About the authors: Noel Monk managed Van Halen from 1978-1985. He helped stage-manage Woodstock, served as Bill Graham’s right-hand man at the legendary Fillmore East, and worked with rock musicians including Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, the Grateful Dead, the Rolling Stones, and the Sex Pistols. He is also the author of 12 Days on the Road: The Sex Pistols and America.

The only book written by a member of the Van Halen camp, and their former manager nonetheless! Order it now, autographed by Noel Monk … only at the Van Halen Store.

Source: BraveWords – News