Reliable web site MelodicRock.com had this Van Halen update today:
A couple of small Van Halen updates for you today. First., the following article from The Hollywood Reporter (link):
"After 35 years at Warner Bros., the band has reportedly left for Sony. An insider tells THR that Columbia A&R executive Stephen Ferrera has been tasked with overseeing a new Van Halen album, its first with David Lee Roth since 1984.
The rumor mill is abuzz with talk of a new Van Halen album - their first with original singer David Lee Roth since he left the band in 1985, the band's first since 1998's Van Halen III and the first to be released on a label other than Warner Bros. Records, where they spent the better part of 35 years.
Several reports cite that Sony-owned Columbia Records will be Van Halen's new label home, with new music due out in 2012. Indeed, a source tells The Hollywood Reporter, “Nothing has been signed yet, but Columbia has been in the lead for some time,”adding that A&R executive Stephen Ferrera has been tasked with overseeing the album.
Ferrera came to Columbia in June after spending three years at EVP of A&R at Island Def Jam, where he worked with such acts asBon Jovi and Ne-Yo. Before that, he held a senior A&R role at RCA, where he worked with the likes of Kelly Clarkson and Carrie Underwood.
Producer-songwriter John Shanks (Michelle Branch, Melissa Etheridge) tweeted early this year that he was in the studio with the band and THR hears Ross Hogarth (Sick Puppies, John Mellencamp) recently finished mixing the album.
Van Halen's current line-up includes Roth, guitarist Eddie Van Halen, his son and bassist Wolfgang Van Halen and drummerAlex Van Halen.
A Columbia Records rep could not be reached for comment."
I can add the following information. Tour dates for USA continue to be booked, starting in February 2012. The tour could be split into two legs, to allow the band to take in some festival and select solo dates in Europe over the northern summer.
A trusted source in Europe tells me that there are 3 German shows being looked at (Stuttgart, Dortmund and Berlin) around the week of June 13th.
I've heard from two sources now that Download UK want Van Halen to headline one of the nights there - the event runs June 6th-11th, 2012 and lastly, expect the band to figure in Sweden Rock Festival calculations - that festival runs June 6th-9th.
A Paris date is also rumoured for late May.