Sammy Hagar Reveals Why He Showed His Junk To The Crowd In 1977
via THAT Rocks! / Youtube
Sammy Hagar, the legendary Red Rocker, recently opened up about a dramatic on-stage meltdown that took place during his opening slot for Kiss at Madison Square Garden in 1977. Experiencing an unexpected backlash from the crowd, Hagar revealed that he was so incensed by the audience’s negative reception that he resorted to an audacious act of defiance. Despite the initial heartbreak, Hagar now views the incident as a pivotal moment in his career.
A Surprising Audience Reaction
Taking us back to that night at Madison Square Garden, Sammy Hagar described how he had been invited to open for Kiss on their Rock And Roll Over tour. However, little did he know that the crowd would be hostile and unresponsive, as they were not informed about his presence in the lineup. The unexpected boos and confusion took Hagar by surprise and ignited a fire within him.
Hagar recalls, with a mix of frustration and determination in his voice:
“They didn’t even know who the fuck I was.”
A “Beautiful” Meltdown and Rejection
As Sammy Hagar tried to win over the unimpressed audience, things took an unexpected turn during his ballad performance. Frustrated by the lack of support, Hagar decided to take drastic action, exposing his private parts and smashing his guitar in a fit of anger.
“It was beautiful in its own way because it gave me drive,” Hagar explains. “It made me angry, and I said that fucking shit is never going to happen again.”
The Aftermath and Reflection
Following the incident, Hagar was met with a mix of reactions from Kiss, legendary promoter Bill Graham, and the audience. While it may have been a shocking moment in Hagar’s career, he now looks back on it with a sense of amusement and reflects on how it shaped him as an artist.
“It’s funny now, but at the time, when you’re faced with that kind of rejection, it can be heartbreaking,” Hagar admitted in his autobiography.
Despite the challenging experience, Sammy Hagar demonstrated his resilience by moving forward and leaving the tour after the first night. However, Hagar’s friendship with Kiss members remained intact, despite his firm decision never to open for them again.
Hagar now contemplates the possibility of redoing the night at Madison Square Garden with both bands, but without the tantrums, reflecting on the growth and wisdom that comes with time and experience.
Watch the interview below: