Sunday, February 23, 2014

TheRothShow: S2E1: The New York City Way [David Lee Roth]

David Lee Roth The Roth Show

David Lee Roth. The man, the legend, the video.

David Lee Roth, for those who don't know, is the long-time and sometimes-erstwhile frontman for Van Halen. He also has his own little web show, which doesn't get a lot of press or buzz or whatever you want to call it - but it's really a trip into a different place that is a lot of fun.

Now, Dave is not for everyone, and I totally get that. However, if you haven't seen it, you might be surprised that you like it. Or, maybe not. But you'll never know unless you do try it.

Anyway, he's a witty fellow and apparently (according to what he says) the brains behind just about everything that has happened in the last thirty years in show business. I'm just kidding about that - sort of. He has a tendency to go way, way off on tangents and it's easy to think he's being incoherent at times - but he really isn't. I think. You can watch and draw your own conclusions.

Last year, he put out an explanation of that infamous clause in Van Halen contracts about brown M&Ms that was devastatingly brilliant (and, yes, it was his idea). And then he rambles off about how much he likes guys in tuxedos and cowboys. It's all a mishmash, but if you like something different - it's all pure kitschy gold. It's kind of like being at a diner at 3 a.m. with a musician while he's winding down from a show, you never know which way the conversation will go, but you know it's going to be completely different.

As a fellow native New Yorker, it's fun to pick up a lot of Dave's local references. When he says "I tuned into Channel 11 or 13 to watch an old movie," or "I always watched the Million Dollar Move after school" or "My uncle was the duke of McDougal Street" (as the owner of Cafe Wha? which Dave plugs ceaselessly) or something like that, it strikes a chord with me that might not resonate if I had grown up somewhere else. So maybe that's part of the appeal to me. But that actually is a major asset to Dave - if you dig where he's coming from and what he's talking about, that gives it a whole added layer of flavor and seasoning.

Dave just released the first episode of his second season, which you may view above. If you like classic footage of a real pop-culture bent accompanying weird rants, you definitely should like this video. Dave's editor, Shelly Toscano, knows her craft and has a talent for hunting down amazing footage. If you are into Dave or just into editing, you can check out a great interview of Shelly about her editing work for Dave and Van Halen here.

Give "The Roth Show" a try. Dave's an acquired taste but a fantastic way to spend half an hour if you can appreciate his vibe.


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