DAVID Lee Roth has announced he’s planning to retire early next year, a year after the death of bandmate Eddie Van Halen.
The 66-year-old rocker, who joined Van Halen in the early 1970s, confirmed that his final performance will be in Las Vegas early next year.
The Van Halen hitmaker will bid adieu to the world of rock ‘n’ roll with five solo shows at House of Blues at Mandalay Bay, starting from New Year’s Eve to Saturday, January 8.
Confirming his retirement, David told the Las Vegas Review-Journal: “I am throwing in the shoes. I’m retiring. This is the first – and only – official announcement.
“You’ve got the news. Share it with the world. I’m not going to explain the statement. The explanation is in a safe. These are my last five shows.”
The musician’s retirement announcement comes a year after bandmate Eddie Van Helen’s death aged 65, which David admitted pushed him to take stock of his own life.
He added: “[I’ve been contemplating] the departure of my beloved classmate recently.
“I am encouraged and compelled to really come to grips with how short time is, and my time is probably even shorter. I thought I might have been the first, frankly.
“And my doctors, my handlers, compelled me to really address that every time I go onstage, I endanger that future.”
Van Halen co-founder Eddie passed away at St. Johns Hospital in Santa Monica, California, with his wife Janie by his side last October.
The rocker passed away just 10 days after original Van Halen bassist Mark Stone also died from cancer.
Eddie’s son Wolfgang confirmed the news of his death at the time with a heartbreaking tribute to his father on social media.
The 29-year-old wrote: “I can’t believe I’m having to write this, but my father, Edward Lodewijk Van Halen, has lost his long and arduous battle with cancer this morning.”
Wolfgang, who has filled in as the band’s bassist since replacing Michael Anthony in 2006, continued: “He was the best father I could ever ask for.
“Every moment I’ve shared with him on and off stage was a gift. My heart is broken and I don’t think I’ll ever fully recover from this loss. I love you so much, Pop.”
Eddie was first diagnosed with tongue cancer in 2000 and had to have a third of his tongue removed.
He was declared cancer-free a couple of years later, but TMZ reported in 2019 that his cancer had returned, only this time it was in his throat.
The rocker had been reportedly flying back and forth between the United States and Germany for five years to get radiation treatment.
Sources told the outlet that the treatment seemed to be keeping the throat cancer in check and that Eddie was doing well, but that all took a turn after it spread to his brain and other organs.
The Netherlands-born, California-raised rock icon shared one child, son Wolfgang, with ex-wife Valerie Bertinelli, who he was married to from 1981 to 2007.
After his death was confirmed, rock’s biggest stars, including Kiss’ Gene Simmons, Black Sabbath frontman Ozzy Osbourne and members of Aerosmith, paid tribute to him online.
Van Halen formed in California in 1972 with Eddie, his brother Alex as drummer, David on vocals and Michael Anthony as bassist until 1985 when Eddie and Roth famously fell out.
Following the bust-up, the band went through several different line-ups but Roth eventually returned to the group in January 2007 as they embarked on a new 40-date tour.
The band went on to release their final album together, A Different Kind Of Truth, in 2012 and remained an active band until Eddie’s death last year.