CSX Classic Cuts

INGLEWOOD, CA - FEBRUARY 08: (L-R) Singer David Lee Roth, musicians Alex Van Halen and Eddie Van Halen of Van Halen perform at their dress rehearsal for family and friends at the Forum on February 8, 2012 in Inglewood, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)

WCSX Classic Cuts

Van Halen: “Dreams”

The Hook: Van Halen get help from a foreigner.

Year: 1986

Album: 5150

Edward Van Halen, Alex Van Halen, Michael Anthony, Sammy Hagar

The second single from 5150 went to number-six on Billboard’s Mainstream Rock chart and number-22 on the Hot 100.

The Background: Sammy Hagar credits their producer, Foreigner guitarist Mick Jones, with “squeezing” a great vocal out of him and arranging a bunch of different Eddie Van Halen guitar parts into a coherent song.

Sammy Hagar on what he thinks about when he hears Van Halen’s “Dreams.” OC:…that song. :24

“I think of Mick Jones from Foreigner, who produced that record, who squeezed that out of me. Eddie had a bunch of different parts and he goes, ‘I like that part, I like that part, that should be the verse,’ and he just cut it all up and made a song. He goes, ‘Now Sammy, what are you gonna to this?’ I’m going, ‘I don’t know – I was singing it an octave lower. And he goes, ‘No man, go for it!’ And I just went, [sings] ‘Whoa that’s…”And everybody in the studio just hands went up, ‘Yes!’ y’know, and I just went home and wrote those lyrics. And I’m real proud of that song.”