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Van Halen Rocks New York Club

After months of empty promises, Van Halen made good on one - a big one involving a small space when the band roared to life in a tiny basement in lower Manhattan Thursday night (1/5). The setting was the Cafe Wha?, a legendary 250 capacity basement venue in Greenwich Village once managed by David Lee Roth's uncle.  The club was something of a musical Mecca in the 60's, attracting Hendrix, Dylan and dozens of other stars.  92 year-old Manny Roth was in the house when his nephew and the band took the stage, the younger Roth exclaiming, 'Last time I stood on a stage this low, we had to have the car back by midnight!'.  The group then unleashed an hour long set of VH classics along with the new song She's A Woman from the album we now know will be titled A Different Kind Of Truth (Feb. 7).  The 11 song performance started with the Kink's You Really Got Me and included a brief interlude with Roth doing his impression of what Stairway To Heaven would have sounded like with Jim Morrison in Robert Plant's place.  Roth, reassuming the position he lost when the band fired him in 1985, was in good form and full of his usual bravado, and the band seemed in full stride and ready to take it to much bigger stages, starting Feb. 18 in Louisville, KY.


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