Van Halen Taps Kortchmar To Produce Next LP

Van Halen has chosen industry veteran Danny Kortchmar to produce the follow-up to last year's "Van Halen 3."

The band's official Web site reports that the group has already recorded two songs with Patrick Leonard (Black Crowes, Madonna) and is bringing in Kortchmar to do the rest of the record. Bandleader Eddie Van Halen (Edward to his friends) told the site that Kortchmar is fun to work with and that he has a "hands-on approach."

Kortchmar was a busy session guitarist in the late '60s and '70s before launching a career as a producer. His credits include old time softies like Don Henley, Linda Ronstadt, and Billy Joel, as well as the odd rockier ventures, including Jon Bon Jovi's "Blaze of Glory" single and Spinal Tap. His more recent projects have included albums with the Spin Doctors and the Fabulous Thunderbirds.

The recording sessions with Kortchmar and Van Halen got underway last week, and the new LP will again feature Gary Cherone on vocals. There's no album

title as yet, but working song titles include "Left For Dead," "River Wide," "Say Uncle," and "You Wear It Well."