Lester Cohen/WireImage.comThis week was supposed to be mark Van Halen's triumphant return: The group, with David Lee Roth back up front, recently signed a shiny new record contract with Interscope, Eddie Van Halen made the Top 10 on Rolling Stone's Greatest Guitarists list, and the band was scheduled to finally confirm their first studio album together in decades at last night's Grammy nominations concert. Only they didn't, even though the Grammys promised the reunion in the least subtle tweet of all time. Between the time Lady Gaga opened the show with "Marry The Night" and closed it with Sugarland, there was no sign of Diamond Dave, Eddie, Alex, or Wolfgang, despite the Grammys promise that we would all "jump" and "dance the night away." So, what happened?
Recording Academy chairman Neil Portnow was asked about Van Halen's absence after the nomination show, and even though he refused to confirm that it was Van Halen that was supposed to appear, he revealed that complications arose between the Grammy tweet and last night's concert. "What happened was very simple. In the world of creativity, everything is fluid," Portnow said before launching into a not-very-simple explanation (via Hitflix). "In the process of discussions that we had been having with an expectation that perhaps we would be at a point tonight where the artist involved and we, moving forward, would be ready to announce [a reunion], they weren't quite at that point. So it's live television, we go on to the next act. It's rock and roll and so on. That being said, we were genuine about the intention and we are genuine about the discussion."
So, either Van Halen just didn't show up at the Grammys as scheduled -- forcing producers to quickly "go on to the next act" -- or the band decided that announcing their reunion after Jason Aldean and Ludacris had just rapped over a country song wasn't really their scene. Or maybe, and this is the theory that probably has Van Halen fans nervous right now, the band is having second thoughts about another full-fledged reunion with the egotistical Roth, which we've seen before. Portnow did hint that viewers might see the unnamed reunited band perform at the actual Grammy ceremony, but after the group ditched on the nominations show, why reward them with a spot on "Music's Biggest Night?"