Monday, July 12, 2004

David Lee Roth Is Advanced

A member of the Advanced Think Tank wrote recently:

"Diamond Dave's No Holds Bar-Be-Que" was advanced to the point of being unwatchable. It alternated scenes of Dave doing martial arts with fantasy scenes set in his house, where he tried to make two women look like a bevy thereof. His cover of "Baker Street" was the background music during one martial arts scene.

Just to let all of you know, David Lee Roth is advanced. You don't have to look any further than "Just a Gigolo" as far as I'm concerned. But I've found some very interesting things about him that I'd like to share with you. From an interview at

NATN: What other jobs have you done?
DLR: I worked in surgery for two years out of junior college. I was a surgical assist and what they call a nuclear janitor. Nuclear medicine was just coming in-- MRIs and CAT scans were just barely starting and you had to have a nuclear designation on your union card. And you know, you had to go through all kinds of stuff and training and so forth. And I worked at all state hospitals, burn wards and so forth and I worked night shift in the barrio. I've got expertise in interesting areas, I guess.

NATN: Can you use that on stage?
DLR:I've actually used it on a few people! I've actually run into some serious accidents along the way. Rock and roll is pretty predictable -- it's the other 38 stamps in my passport that I spent the money on. Don't ask me how to spell New Guinea but I've got the pictures of both of us there (laughs)!

NATN: OK, so you're touring and you've got a new album (Diamond Dave). Is it deja vu? ?
DLR: No, it's not deja vu. It's only deja vu if you're doing the same show and the same routine over and over again. There are some bands that are extraordinary at that. The Rolling Stones have been playing the same song over and over and over again for, what do you think, 25, 30 years? I like the song though! AC/DC has been playing the same song, album by album for 30 years but we dig the song. I do believe, however, that mankind was destined for change. There are only two things that really look exactly the same from the moment you first see them to the moment they are dead and they are a sea anemone and Neil Young (laughs).

NATN: Neil Young? There's no way he came out like that.
DLR: Oh, absolutely, I'm convinced.

NATN: Soooo.. what was this video shoot thing I read about?
DLR: Oh! Three days of fun and music. No, that was Woodstock. What I was doing was the VH1 Classic "Diamond Dave's No-Holds Barbeque and Christmas Special." Is that what you're referring to? 'Cause if you weren't, you should be.

NATN: Fourth of July? Christmas?
DLR: I just finished 70 spots of my own creation -- completely of my own creation -- with all the guest characters that I served you up in "Gigilo" and "California Girls," which I wrote and directed. In this we have the Dom triplets from Playboy, as pregnant white chain smoking trash and I know you're thinking, 'Diamond Dave, you don't have to be white to be pregnant chain smoking trash,' and I'll tell you, 'sweetheart, it sure helps.' Why can't they be heroes too, goddamn it (pause for laugh)? I have a low-rider donkey -- don't ask, just watch -- I have the security guy from the circus, Jumbo Jimmy. My hallucinations are what your reality caused me to have after happy hour. Ridicule and sarcasm were refined arts in my family and I have a black belt (laughs). I came out of the Roth family history with the scars and the bars (laughs). Stars and the scars.

NATN: You deserve it, I guess.
DLR: I don't base what I do in the eyes of others. [In French accent] What was it, Sartre? He said the most famous single sentence in all of philosophy study, um, [in French] 'hell is in the others.' You may have heard it. They teach you that within the first 30 days of any philosophy class at any university and what it means is, if you are looking to find yourself reflected in the eyes of the others or you are judging your performance or whatever it is you do by how others see it, you will be in hell. Somebody may say, 'well Dave, what about those hardcore Van Halen fans,' and I said, 'they grew up and stopped buying records.' I never really considered what 40-somethings think about music, any more than what 20-somethings think about it. For everyone reading this right now, I think I know what's best for everybody. That's where we're going.

...[touring] is like living on a submarine. You know, there's long, long periods of absolutely nothing followed by brief intense panic. And whatever happens after the show, well, what I do before the show in preparation: the video, the interview, the recording process and so forth is kind of a combination of Groucho Marx and Kurosawa. What I do onstage is somewhere between, I don't know, Bruce Lee and the scarecrow from "The Wizard Of Oz" and what I do after the show is somewhere between Errol Flynn and that other basketball player (laughs).
The statement "I think I know what's best for everybody" is very advanced considering the moves he's made over the years. His reflections on Satre and hardcore Van Halen fans is also brilliant. Plus, he gets in a reference to basketball. I also looked a bit at his website, where you can use the Sammy Hagar Random Insult Generator or read one of Dave's Zen poems. Or check out his experience as an EMT.

You just don't get any more advanced than David Lee Roth. According to Britt (and I agree) DLR is in Mick Jagger territory. He just makes up his own rules of advancement and we are left to marvel.

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