Sammy Hagar & The Circle w/Collective Soul @ Glen Helen Amphitheater – 9/10/17

Review and Pictures: Diane Lynn

Sammy Hagar & The Circle

Sammy Hagar is celebrating his 70th birthday next month but you would never know that by watching him tearing up a stage.
He’s also celebrating his 40th year in music and he’s brought along three very talented guys to help him with the festivities. Michael Anthony, Vic Johnson and Jason Bonham make up the band The Circle and they have once again come together to be with the Red Rocker to celebrate these two major milestones.

Back in 2015 The Circle released a live album called “At Your Service“; which was a collection of hits, some from Sammy’s Montrose days, mixed with a few from his time with Van Halen, throw in a few Zeppelin tunes and some Chickenfoot and there you have it , The Circle.

I had the pleasure of seeing Sammy perform several times over the years.  A couple of solo shows, twice with Van Halen and the last time was back in 2005 with the Waboritas (which I am proud to say I became an Official Member of the “Red Head Club” and enjoyed a margarita (or two) back stage before the show with the man himself). But it’s been a few years since I’ve heard him play live so I honestly wasn’t sure what to expect this night.  They started off with showing some old concert clips of Sammy from back in the day, a retrospective of his career if you will, which was pretty awesome getting to see how he really didn’t change much except for maybe the various lengths of his hair. But once he started singing any doubts about how he might sound, since he’s getting up in years, were gone.  I knew this was going to be another killer Sammy Hagar show! The nearly sold out crowd were on their feet and stayed there for the entire show. There was a lot of head-banging, dancing in the isles, dancing on seats, high fives; it was a good old fashion rock show!

Sammy picking Glen Helen as the first stop of this tour had some real meaning for the Red Rocker. He attended and graduated from Fontana High School and was also part of a house band for a place called “The Nightclub” located right there in San Bernardino so this was “coming home” for him.  He did a bit of reminiscing about his home town in between songs, even calling the audience “like his family”.

Sammy hasn’t slowed down one bit, his energy was high and his voice is as strong as ever!

The bandmates couldn’t have been matched any better. This is a group of brothers, each bringing their own unique talents to The Circle. Watching them on stage meshing it all together is priceless.

Sammy Hagar – lead vocals, guitars

Michael Anthony – bass, background vocals

Vic Johnson – lead guitar

Jason Bonham – drums

That’s some great talent right there folks, you don’t get to see a combination like this very often, I urge you, see this show!

Check out this set list, of course it’s all the favorites. Adding in “When the Levee Breaks” is obviously highlighting the inherited, amazing talent of Jason Bonham and although it’s not your typical Zeppelin rock song it definitely works for this show.  Sammy ended the show with a slow melodic version of “Dreams” with just him on vocals and Vic Johnson on guitar. The crowd was singing along to every word, cell phones taking the place of lighters.
It was a perfect ending to a great show!


There’s Only One Way to Rock – (Sammy Hagar song)

Poundcake – (Van Halen cover)

Good Times Bad Times – (Led Zeppelin cover)

Rock Candy – (Montrose cover)

I Can’t Drive 55 – (Sammy Hagar song)

Big Foot – (Chickenfoot cover)

Right Now – (Van Halen cover)

Why Can’t This Be Love – (Van Halen cover)

Little White Lie – (Sammy Hagar song)

When the Levee Breaks – (Memphis Minnie & Kansas Joe McCoy cover)

Finish What Ya Started – (Van Halen cover)

Heavy Metal – (Sammy Hagar song)

Mas Mezquila – (Sammy Hagar and The Wabos cover)


When It’s Love – (Van Halen cover)

Rock and Roll – (Led Zeppelin cover)

Dreams – (Van Halen cover)




Collective Soul

Collective Soul came on the scene in 1992, back when popular music was making some major shifts. 80’s Hair Metal was taking a sharp decline, Rap was starting to slightly integrate into the main stream and Grunge was taking the air waves by storm. But where did Collective Soul fit into all of this? I believe they really didn’t. They were a bit of a stand out for a while with groups like the Goo Goo Dolls, Gin Blossoms and Dishwalla following suit, the Alternative music.

I had never seen Collective Soul in concert and I have to confess, I’ve never purchased any of their CD’s before but I knew I had heard and liked a couple of their songs. However it wasn’t until seeing them open for Sammy that I realized I had really liked quite a few of their songs.

Their performance was relaxed at times but their frontman Ed Roland was captivating. To me they sounded just as they did on the radio which made them a great choice to partner with The Circle; the buildup was a perfect match. Collective Soul: 23 years in the business and still a great following. I’m glad I was able to see them in concert. I’ll be going out soon to buy my first Collective Soul CD.

Collective Soul this night comprised of Ed Roland on lead vocals and Keys, Dean Roland on Rhythm Guitar, Will Turpin on Bass, Jesse Triplett on Lead Guitar and Johnny Rabb on Drums.

Set list




Better Now

Right as Rain

AYTA (Are You the Answer)

The World I Know


Where the River Flows


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