11th March 11:44
"David Lee Roth triggers apathy, snooze alarms"
David Lee Roth triggers apathy, snooze alarms
January 10, 2006
By Len Righi, Assistant Editor, Arts and Entertainment
Of The Morning Call
As Howard Stern sailed into the future at Sirius Satellite Radio
Monday, his East Coast replacement continued struggling to get his show
off the ground.
Former Van Halen frontman David Lee Roth, filling WYSP's (94.1 FM)
morning slot for the fifth time since Jan. 3, did little more than
create a longing for the golden days of outrage.
Roth came across like Guardian Angels founder and sometime stand-up
comic Curtis Sliwa, only with a less tenuous grip on the facts than the
He joked about Stern only once during his show. ''Now that Howard Stern
charges for his show, does that mean he's in the ****o business?'' Roth
asked about 45 minutes into his broadcast, which began at 6 a.m.
Roth seemingly took an indirect jab at Stern 20 minutes earlier, as he
and his amorphous studio gang were jabbering with forced jocularity
about a list of words that Stern's long-time antagonist, the Federal
Communications Commission, won't allow on radio.
Roth observed that only people with a limited vocabulary and
intelligence would have trouble expressing themselves without those
words. ''If that's a great big hurdle for you, then you've got bigger
issues,'' said Roth, who never once came close to crossing the line.
One of the biggest issues facing the 51-year-old's fledgling four-hour
show, which originates from New York's WFNY (the former K-ROCK), is
going beyond the obvious wisecracking.
In reviewing the news - California Gov. Arnold Schwarzeneggar's
motorcycle accident, Lou Rawls' death, Nick Lachey's admission to Elle
magazine that he sometimes wore soon-to-be-ex-wife Jessica Simpson's
shoes, the expulsion of two **** girls from a private school for making
out in a closet, etc. - Roth and company's round-robin observations
were hardly worth the incessant (canned) sniggering that followed each
An attempt to gin up outrage about whether convicted killers of famous
people should be allowed any measure of freedom was undercut by Roth
and his cohorts referring to John Lennon's paramour as May Ling,
instead of May Pang.
And a debate about whether child stars such as 10-year-old Dakota
Fanning should be immune from comic barbs was rendered silly when Roth
said (twice) that Jodi Foster played a 12-year-old hooker in ''Taxi.''
She appeared in the film ''Taxi Driver.''
A potentially amusing segment called ''Rockers with Walkers'' turned
into one the show's lamest. Though callers offered a variety of
opinions about the worth of tours by the reunited Cream, the Rolling
Stones, Paul McCartney, Rod Stewart and Queen with Paul Rodgers, Roth
kept turning the conversation back to his old band, asking whether Van
Halen with Sammy Hagar is really Van Halen. No doubt many people were
late for work if they forgot to set their snooze alarms.
A quip made by Roth during Monday's show could pretty much sum up the
neophyte radio host's prospects: ''Your future is looking brighter with
every beer I put into me.''