So this is the new Van Halen song I guess. (“She’s the Woman”)

Eddie Van Halen and David Lee Roth at Cafe Wha?, 1/5/2012
And not a trace of spandex to be found...

As most music fans know by now, Van Halen played at the Cafe Wha? last night to get things going in anticipation of their upcoming album, A Different Kind of Truth. I spotted a picture of the setlist on Twitter and my eyes were drawn to a tune called “She’s the Woman.”

Hmmm, I thought to myself, that name sounds familiar. And sure enough, it’s actually a song that pre-dates the group’s debut LP and has circulated in demo form among VH fans for years. Here’s what it sounded like circa 1976:

VH fans will doubtless recognize the main riff and bridge here, which was used in the all-time classic track “Mean Street.” I haven’t heard a clip from the 2012 version, so I can’t say how much of the original is intact. I have to imagine that Eddie wouldn’t quite so lazy as to duplicate the song note-for-note, but then again Eddie’s never been very predictable, has he?

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