Diamonds Are Forever

Anyone trying to steal the spotlight from David Lee Roth is asking for it

A: Van Halen music was changing. Van Halen music when I was the quarterback was belligerently enthusiastic and enthusiastically belligerent. And in the mid-'80s, you heard the music swing in a very different direction. I was "Hot for Teacher," and when they took on another singer, it was "Why Can't This Be Love?" You see the difference, right? But I'm an antagonist, not a bully. I love to mix it up but not with anybody smaller than me and certainly not with somebody who can't give a little back -- because I know people are watching, and it's all for entertainment value anyway. The Van Halens are not doing well medically and spiritually, so I'm going to leave off of them. I hope they do great, and I look forward to a reunion tour. I'm a no-notice lead vocalist, babe. You don't have to call me -- just send a car.

Q: That should be good news to the folks behind the "Fan Halen" Website. They're trying to whip up a reunion petition campaign, and they say, "Your fans don't care who's getting along with who. We just want to rock." Is that the bottom line with you too?

A: No, it's not, because I think there's an incredibly high mark of excellence here, and if you can't reach it, fuck off. I'm tired of paying top dollar to watch fat bodies waddle around on the stage giving me representations of something that was way mo' better way mo' long ago. Half-assed? Then I want half my ticket price back, thanks. How many times have you thought that? How many times have we seen our colleagues in so many different rackets of music complete their long journey to the middle. The Bible says "Go forth and multiply," not "Waddle forth and calcify!"

NT: I guess that means you don't want people who come to your show to think they're going to see a David Lee Roth who's twice the man he used to be.

A: I want them to know that if you come to see Diamond Dave -- in any sense of the words -- you'd best wear tight shoes, because you're going to flip right out of them. If the Van Halens are ready to go for that, spectacular. Otherwise, remain with the dream.

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