This month marks the 3-year anniversary of a rather awful experiment held across American radio stations. It was a test that did not last long. In 2005, Howard Stern announced that he was leaving terrestrial radio and moving over to Satellite where there would be no restrictions on content. Desperate to fill the gap and continue with high ratings, CBS radio scrambled to come up with something that would keep audiences around. They gave us David Lee Roth.
Roth radio was just awful! As a huge Van Halen fan, I want to find a way to sugarcoat that statement, but I can’t. When it’s bad, it’s bad, and Dave was horrendous. He was a fish out of water and had no idea how to be a radio host, how to put together compelling content, or how to run an interesting program. He’s an excellent front man and an amazing showman, and he always will be, but he is NOT a talk show radio host.
Dave’s big calling card was telling the listeners that they were in “the spotlight.” I suppose that meant it was their big moment, because they were about to be heard by ten people worldwide. I’m not sure what made Diamond Dave think he would be able to host talk radio, but he certainly didn’t do his homework. Subject matter, content, and dealing with the corporate lawyers was always a challenge and only helped to derail the show faster.
By April of 2006, 4 months after he started, David Lee Roth’s show was cancelled and CBS announced that they would be bringing the Opie and Anthony show to regular morning radio. Things worked out just fine for Dave, who rejoined Van Halen about a year later. The rest, as they say, is history, and it was a win-win situation for everyone. The fans of talk radio got a quality program back on the air, and the fans of Van Halen got a quality lead singer back with the band. Now if they could only fix that whole Wolfgang instead of Michael Anthony mess…
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