David Lee Roth Performs 'Panama' at Kickoff of 2020 Tour with Kiss - Rolling Stone
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Watch David Lee Roth Perform ‘Panama’ at Kickoff of 2020 Tour with Kiss

Van Halen frontman will spend the year playing arena gigs with Kiss as part of their farewell tour

Kiss with special guest David Lee Roth launched their 2020 arena tour on Sunday night at the SNHU Arena in Manchester, New Hampshire.

Roth played a truncated version the show he debuted in Las Vegas last month, including a rendition of “Panama,” one of seven Van Halen classics in the eight-song set. The lone solo cut was his 1987 hit “Just Like Paradise.”

Kiss stuck mostly to their hits as well and didn’t vary the set much from last year, although they did break out “Tears are Falling” for the first time since 2014 and “Parasite” for the first time since 2015. The encore began with drummer Eric Singer performing “Beth” on the piano, a move they’ve done many times over the years.

This tour is Roth’s first time playing big venues since Van Halen last hit the road in 2015. The Van Halen brothers have virtually vanished from public life since that tour wrapped. That situation prompted Roth to hit the road for his first solo tour since rejoining the group in 2007.

“I’ve inherited the band, de facto, whatever that means,” Roth said late last year. “I think it means, you’ve inherited it, carry this proudly. Van Halen isn’t going to be coming back in the fashion that you know. And, that being said, Eddie’s got his own story to tell — not mine to tell it.”

Meanwhile, fans of the Sammy Hagar period of Van Halen will have a chance to hear songs from his time fronting the band when he tours this summer on a bill with Whitesnake and Night Ranger. Former Van Halen bassist Michael Anthony plays in Hagar’s band, meaning that basically every member of the group past and present will be playing Van Halen songs on tour this year besides those with the last name “Van Halen.”


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