David Lee Roth or Sammy Hagar: Which Van Halen Frontman Has the Higher Net Worth?

The world recently mourned the loss of a rock legend Eddie Van Halen. His iconic electric guitar playing had filled arenas since the inception of his namesake in the early ’70s. The original frontman, David Lee Roth, enjoyed a successful music career with Van Halen until 1985 when Sammy Hagar stepped in.

The innovative vocalists elevated the band to mythical status. Each returned to Van Halen for several stints over the years. But almost a half-century later, one frontman has amassed a considerably greater net worth.

The man who personified Van Halen

David Lee Roth and Eddie Van Halen of Van Halen perform at Shoreline Amphitheatre on July 16, 2015, in Mountain View, California
David Lee Roth and Eddie Van Halen in 2015 | C Flanigan/Getty Images

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Van Halen became one of the greatest rock bands of all time, producing 12 studio albums and selling more than 56 million copies in the U.S. The group’s self-titled debut album, released in 1978, launched the young musicians’ careers and secured their place in rock history. Their most successful album, 1984, introduced the hit single “Jump,” which reached number one on the Billboard charts.

The band has earned three Grammy nominations and won in 1991 for Best Hard Rock Performance With Vocal for the hit album For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge. And in 2007, the band was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Van Halen changed the face of rock music, ushering in a novel sound for the ’80s. “The key to that new sound was Eddie Van Halen, whose innovative two-handed ‘tapping’ technique made him the most influential guitarist since Hendrix,” Van Halen News Desk claims.

According to Wealthy Genius, the guitarist was worth an estimated $100 million at the time of his death in 2020 after a long battle with cancer.

David Lee Roth

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Celebrity Net Worth reports the 66-year-old lifelong rocker, David Lee Roth, is worth an estimated $60 million.

Roth worked on six chart-topping albums during his tenure with Van Halen. The lead singer and principal lyricist became a star on MTV thanks to his lighthearted personality, limber moves, colorful outfits, and blond mane. The immensely talented frontman was credited with helping to create the trademark sound that defined the iconic group.

In 1985, after releasing wildly successful hits such as “California Girls” and “Just a Gigolo/I Ain’t Got Nobody,” Roth began having personal difficulties with Eddie Van Halen. The two decided to part ways, and the vibrant artist chose to seek a solo career.

After releasing several albums on his own, Roth took a break from music and, in the late ’90s, began working as a paramedic. VHND reported he also worked as a Vegas lounge singer and wrote a book, Crazy From the Heat. The multifaceted personality also hosted a radio show, took up painting, and rejoined Van Halen in 2007 for a reunion tour, which grossed $93 million.

Eddie Van Halen and Roth made amends, and the frontman began touring again with the band. In 2018, he created a line of skincare products for tattooed skin and the following year had a solo residency in Las Vegas at Mandalay Bay Resort. He was set to tour with the band Kiss in 2020, but the coronavirus pandemic changed those plans.

Sammy Hagar

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Known as “The Red Rocker,” Sammy Hagar replaced Roth in 1985 and remained Van Halen’s frontman until 1996. He returned for a stint from 2003 to 2005.

Making a small fortune as the face of Van Halen, the curly-haired rocker was a business entrepreneur at heart. He bought a bar in Cabo San Lucas and then, in the ’90s, started his own tequila brand, Cabo Wabo. In 2007, Hagar sold 80 percent of the company for $80 million. Two years later, he sold his remaining interest for another $15 million.

Hagar also has an extensive car collection, a valuable real estate portfolio, and holdings in two restaurants named Sammy’s Beach Bar & Grill. Profits from both locations go to local charities.

According to Celebrity Net Worth, “The Best of Both Worlds” singer is wealthier than his Van Halen bandmates. His estimated net worth is $150 million.