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#hard rock, classic rock, rock, heavy metal, 70s
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Montrose was the original Californian hard rock band, pioneering the kind of short and punchy songs ready made for arenas that would be a template for later and more successful bands such as Van Halen. The band featured Ronnie Montrose on guitar (coming off a successful stint in The Edgar Winter Group) and future solo star and Van Halen member Sammy Hagar. Rounding out the foursome on their Ted Templeman-produced debut, Montrose (Warner Bros., 1973), were drummer Denny Carmassi and Bill Church. The original line-up lasted long enough to make just their debut album.