A concert celebrating the music of Eddie Van Halen Oct. 9 in Destin

Special to Gannett
Tickets for Oct. 9 concert experience at Mattie Kelly Cultural Arts Village in Destin available at MitchMalloy.com.

Mitch Malloy, the lead singer of iconic rock band Great White, will perform a one-time concert honoring the musical legacy of one of his heroes, Eddie Van Halen, on Oct 9. 

Malloy, who is also a hit solo artist, awarding-winning songwriter, and producer, was initially chosen to replace Sammy Hagar in Van Halen. 

This was the opportunity of a lifetime, but as surreal as this experience was, Malloy also felt that the business and creative sides of the offer were not as clear-cut as his conversations were with the band, especially Eddie. Following the band’s appearance on the MTV Music Awards with David Lee Roth, Malloy realized that die-hard fans, like himself, would be reluctant to accept another singer. This was especially true because once the band appeared together on the awards show, the expectation of Dave returning was at an all-time high. 

Over the years, there have been many stories circulating and interview offers for Malloy to talk about his experience with Van Halen. He declined for many years, but in the early 2000s a Van Halen biography touched on Malloy's time with the band that led to more requests. He finally accepted the offer of a friend and documentarian to film a mini-documentary on his time with the band. Thus, "Mitch Malloy: Van Halen’s Lost Boy" was created that shared Malloy's Van Halen experience.  

Soon after Eddie's death, Rolling Stone magazine reached out to Malloy to gain insight into his time with the band for an article being written on Eddie. Malloy's story was so intriguing that his interview evolved into a feature for Rolling Stone. For years, fans have asked Malloy to perform Van Halen so they can have a glimpse into what the legendary band would have sounded like with Mitch fronting. 

For one night only — Oct 9 — Malloy will host Mitch Malloy’s VH Experience a Celebration of Eddie Van Halen … Powered by Step One Automotive. He will be backed by an A-List band including Pete Thorn (Chris Cornell, Don Henley, Melissa Etheridge) on guitar, Daniel Spriewald (Phil X of Bon Jovi) on bass, and Wayne Killius (Keith Urban, Big & Rich, Luke Bryan) on drums. 

In keeping with Eddie’s support of music in the schools, a portion of the proceeds will go to the music program at the new Destin High School. The coastal community has rallied behind this powerhouse event and sponsors include title sponsor Step One Automotive, SETCO, Black Sheep Tequila, Destin Plastic Surgery, HybridLight, Echelon, and 30A Shade. Trest Richerson with special guest hit songwriter/artist Josh Mirenda (Jason Aldean, Dierks Bentley) will open the show.

Tickets are on sale now for the Oct. 9 event at Mattie Kelly Cultural Arts Village and can be purchased at MitchMalloy.com.