February 18, 2008, - 12:41 pm

Video of the Day: David Lee Roth Auditions for “American Idol”

By Debbie Schlussel
Remember the hilarious “unplugged” David Lee Roth vocals I posted from Van Halen’s “Running With the Devil”?
At the time, I wrote that it’s a good thing “American Idol” was not around then, or DLR would NOT be going to Hollywood:

What would Simon and Randy say about these vocals? Well, it’s safe to say he would not be going to Hollywood. Glad “AI” wasn’t around then.

Well, someone posting on youtube must have been reading this site. He posted this clever video on when Simon met DLR:



Thanks to reader Chet for the tip.

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8 Responses

Who gives a sh*+ what Simon thinks or says?! The difference here is that David Lee Roth is recording and performing HIS OWN, ORIGINAL MATERIAL that went 7-times platinum, and not someone else’s song like everyone else performing in the world’s largest karaoke contest.

Yiddish Steel on February 18, 2008 at 1:46 pm

I don’t know which torture was worse, either listening to that, or whatever Roth was doing to himself. High notes like that require self-inflicted pain.

Bigfoot on February 18, 2008 at 4:24 pm

I never realized, until separated, just how DLR’s lyrics sounded by themself.
That being said, what difference does it make even if he’s not a great singer? Joe Cocker, Bon Scott and Brian Johnson all are terrible singers, but they’ve made millions.
Not too crazy about American Idol. A show that leads people to think they can sing and then sends the abysmal up in front of Simon, Randy and Paula is far too sadistic. I don’t like humiliating people for entertainment, especially when you consider that many of the wannabes don’t know that they can’t sing.

richardzowie on February 18, 2008 at 4:26 pm

Debbie, to be fair, there’s no one on AI, now or ever, who will be as good as Van Halen was w/DLR.

Anonymous1 on February 18, 2008 at 5:54 pm

Sounds like an operatic version of a proctology exam gone bad.
But Van Halen was best first with Roth.
He’s a cheerful nut, and doesn’t need Simon Nobody’s approval.

profitsbeard on February 18, 2008 at 7:03 pm

Hey a
That’s just wrong. You can’t sample out DLR and then present it as a product.
He was the spice of VH – not meant for solitary consuption.
Whatchya doin here is like drinking taco sause.

papertiger on February 18, 2008 at 11:46 pm

Debbie, I don’t know what you find so hilarious about this. That’s what a raw vocal track sounds like, and it sounded pretty good to me. Are you saying the singing was bad?

CraigC on February 19, 2008 at 12:22 am

Debbie, it doesn’t matter what AI would think. You are talking about one of the most influential and greatest rock “BANDS”…. not a soloist singer who sings ONE hit song then is soon forgotten by the wayside when the next AI show comes up. VH sold more than 80 million albums worldwide, you just can’t size up a stripped down vocal track….just imagine hearing a song like..for example “Poker Face” stripped down..we’d ALL be laughing at that one right? Speaking of AI….or better said “the world’s largest karaoke contest”.

Rob on August 9, 2010 at 7:14 pm

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