Wolfgang Van Halen expressed concerns about performing his new song “Distance” live, saying he wasn’t yet able to “make it through” the tribute to his late father, Eddie Van Halen.

But he said there's been an upside to releasing the song as his first Mammoth WVH single, which made him feel hopeful, regardless of the difficulties.

“It’s kind of a wound that can never really close, but I’m astounded with how positive everybody has been, considering that it’s a … softer song that doesn’t sound like Van Halen,” he told Andy Hall’s Pass in a recent interview. “I always expect the worst … but I’ve been blown away by the response. It’s been a very therapeutic experience, for sure.”

He added that one of his “favorite things” about it was that “a lot of people got to experience my father like he was to me. ... But then a lot of people can relate it to their lives. ... So many comments I’ve seen – ‘Wow, that was heavy; I’m gonna go call my dad right now.’ Knowing that there’s probably a wave of sons and daughters calling their dads just to say ‘I love you’ in the past month makes me feel really great.”

Wolfgang Van Halen previously announced one live appearance for next year but said he hoped to tour in support of the release of his debut album.

Asked if there was an emotional “place” to go while performing “Distance,” he said, “If there is I haven’t found it yet. I still can’t make it through the song myself, on my own. But I’m going to have to find a way to get there – and I know I will. No matter what, it’ll be an emotional song to play every night, for sure.” When it was suggested that the audience might help him through by singing along, he replied: “That would be wonderful.”


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