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Van Halen Riff

The gentlemen of arena rock: What's wrong with Sammy Hagar? [Let's Get Killed, Jennifer Maerz, Dec. 26] He was part of the first two real American hard-rock bands, Montrose and Mountain. Yes, Van Halen is better with [David Lee] Roth, but the tired "only the original will suffice" sentiment is almost always lazy, in my opinion. In addition, Sammy Hagar is a better pure vocalist.

And finally, Van Halen never has released a song called "Señorita." I suppose Maerz meant the song "Little Guitars," which is a great guitar song. Thanks for writing the article, but I don't think the pure smear of the two victims of Eddie's ego (Sammy as well as Gary Cherone) was warranted at all. Please also note that both are pure gentlemen in everyday life.  Not sure one can say so about Mr. Roth and his massive ego.

Jay Parchman

Chesapeake, Virginia

Contra Costa meets Hollywood: Regarding the article "One Big BANG": This piece is well written. Geluardi depicts very well the plight of the modern journalist in the shrinking newsprint market. The key issues are common to all workers who write for a living — respect and parity.

The current strike in Hollywood by the Writers Guild highlights the lack of fair treatment generally for the work of those who create or report stories or news. The recognition is minimal. Try to even name three reporters or Hollywood writers, much less name ones who have received awards or recognition in the past 10 years. Writers, like everyone else, need the respect that goes with having a real say in their working conditions.

Robert Cheasty


Scold the Dog

Why Bow-ther?: Why Bow Wow? ["The 20-Year-Old Veteran," Music, Dec. 26] Lil Bow Wow is a perfect example of what's wrong with hip-hop today. He's young, untalented, rich, and stupid. Of all the rappers making records today, commercial or otherwise, you chose to write about a 20-year-old know-it-all scrub with no mic skills. So what if he has six albums — can you name them? How about a single off any of those albums? In 20 years, when there are classic-hip-hop radio stations, no one will be dropping Bow Wow's name. Guaranteed.

I'm not asking for another Kanye, Jay Z, or 50 Cent article. But there are so many other rappers out there with so much more relevant things to say than this clown.

Benjamin Terry

San Francisco


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