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Thread: David Lee Roth - A Lil' Ain't Enough

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    David Lee Roth - A Lil' Ain't Enough



    Apparently the story here is that eMpTyV aired this video once and then banned it for eternity. I have to admit, I never saw it before now.

    Don't know what the network's objections were at the time, but I'm reasonably sure the midgets in blackface would certainly be enough to get it yanked off the air today. Not sure what Dave was thinking with that idea. Other than he had to fill screen time somehow, since Jason Becker obviously wasn't going to be in the video.
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    Mmmm, not so much re: MTV airing that video once then banning it forever.

    I remember seeing the video air on MTV more than a few times when the album was first released. I don't recall anyone saying anything at the time about the midgets in blackface one way or the other.

    Roth's solo career had already peaked with Skyscraper in terms of commercial relevance. By the time ALAE came out in early 1991, that whole genre of hard rock - nobody back then ever called it hair metal - was sort of waning. Although the Seattle sound wasn't making waves just yet, it was literally just months away before it would. Doubtless, releasing the album while the first Gulf War was underway didn't help in terms of general promotion and people's attention spans. However, it might also be said that the first single/title track really wasn't the strongest in terms of Roth solo material up to that point. A decent-enough song, but I can recall watching the video at the time and thinking that the song itself was...a bit boilerplate and typical, really. I ended up enjoying most of the rest of the album much, much more than the title track, and still do.

    Dave's career peak was in the 1980s. Really, nothing more complicated than that. It's not say everything he did post-1989 sucked. It is to say that in general factual terms the largest amount of public interest in his career happened in the 1980s.
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    Guess I somehow missed the video then. Or had completely forgot about it. But 1991's kind of a blur for me for any number of reasons. Can't even remember if I had cable TV the first half of that year, and probably didn't watch it much if I did.

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    Quote Originally Posted by FORD View Post


    Apparently the story here is that eMpTyV aired this video once and then banned it for eternity. I have to admit, I never saw it before now.

    Don't know what the network's objections were at the time, but I'm reasonably sure the midgets in blackface would certainly be enough to get it yanked off the air today. Not sure what Dave was thinking with that idea. Other than he had to fill screen time somehow, since Jason Becker obviously wasn't going to be in the video.
    I'm pretty sure I saw this a few times around its release, maybe not just on MTV, there were several Canadian based video shows as well at night...
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    Quote Originally Posted by FORD View Post


    Apparently the story here is that eMpTyV aired this video once and then banned it for eternity. I have to admit, I never saw it before now.

    Don't know what the network's objections were at the time, but I'm reasonably sure the midgets in blackface would certainly be enough to get it yanked off the air today. Not sure what Dave was thinking with that idea. Other than he had to fill screen time somehow, since Jason Becker obviously wasn't going to be in the video.
    Dave is a huge fan of Al Jolson and Al was famous for his blackface performances. The midgets in blackface are a tip of the hat to Al Jolson. The video was probably yanked because media companies that depend on advertising don’t like controversy. Is Dave a racist? We all know he isn’t.
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    Quote Originally Posted by FORD View Post
    Guess I somehow missed the video then. Or had completely forgot about it. But 1991's kind of a blur for me for any number of reasons. Can't even remember if I had cable TV the first half of that year, and probably didn't watch it much if I did.
    91 was a busy year. I was finishing my up MBA.

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    I don't think this was controversial at the time ,just starting to get a slightly tired - doubling down on the 1980s in 1991 and we had gone from a band in Yankee Rose to Dave and Vai in the horrible Stand Up video to just Dave trying to carry the whole thing.

    Looking forward to the farewell tour in October 2021, jeez that made me feel old.

    Ironically that sounds about the time tours could be restarting.
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    Pretty much, I think the main cuntroversy was that the video felt dated and forced next to things that would be "Smells Like Teen Spirit" and "Alive"...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Seshmeister View Post
    I don't think this was controversial at the time ,just starting to get a slightly tired - doubling down on the 1980s in 1991 and we had gone from a band in Yankee Rose to Dave and Vai in the horrible Stand Up video to just Dave trying to carry the whole thing.

    Looking forward to the farewell tour in October 2021, jeez that made me feel old.

    Ironically that sounds about the time tours could be restarting.
    Biggest irony about the "farewell tour" is that Dave thought by 2021 that he would be fat, but still have all his hair.

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    I barely ever saw Stand Up from Skyscraper but saw this one a lot on MTV. I only saw Sensible Shoes a few times. The rarest one from this album was Tell the Truth. I NEVER saw it until years later and didn't even know Dave did a video for it. Loco Del Calor was also rare but MTV wasn't going to put a song in Spanish on heavy rotation.
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    Quote Originally Posted by sonrisa salvaje View Post
    I barely ever saw Stand Up from Skyscraper but saw this one a lot on MTV. I only saw Sensible Shoes a few times. The rarest one from this album was Tell the Truth. I NEVER saw it until years later and didn't even know Dave did a video for it. Loco Del Calor was also rare but MTV wasn't going to put a song in Spanish on heavy rotation.
    I saw Stand Up a bunch of times, although I tend to doubt it was aired nearly as much as Just Like Paradise.

    The main reason I remember seeing the ALAE video air on MTV was that it was the last Roth promo I actually saw being played on MTV: I didn't see Tell The Truth get any play. Nor did I see She's My Machine or Night Life get any air play on MTV from the YFLM album, though it wouldn't surprise me if Tell The Truth was aired a few times during the spring of 1991. By the time YFLM came out, Dave was more famous for his pot bust in Central Park than his then-current solo album, which I can't even recall getting any type of mention in the media or reading a single review of it at the time, though doubtless it must have received both to some degree back in 1993.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Terry View Post
    By the time YFLM came out, Dave was more famous for his pot bust in Central Park than his then-current solo album, which I can't even recall getting any type of mention in the media or reading a single review of it at the time, though doubtless it must have received both to some degree back in 1993.
    I don't remember a national release party on the radio either. That had always been the case for Dave up to that time. I was done with MTV. I don't think I knew the album came out until a few days later. That was the first of which i didn't purchase on release day.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Seshmeister View Post
    I don't think this was controversial at the time ,just starting to get a slightly tired - doubling down on the 1980s in 1991 and we had gone from a band in Yankee Rose to Dave and Vai in the horrible Stand Up video to just Dave trying to carry the whole thing.

    Looking forward to the farewell tour in October 2021, jeez that made me feel old.

    Ironically that sounds about the time tours could be restarting.
    Dave ran out of rocket sauce. Times were a changin and he was so good at his peak no way he could top it. Dave hit pay dirt during a magical time in pop culture that we will never see ever again. Once in a lifetime stuff. Tell your grandkids about it.

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    One way to look at it was he was 13 years into his recording career and had a longer run at the top than Robert Plant or John Lennon...

    The ALAE tour and onwards was definitely when things started to go less well. Fashions, wrong thing at the wrong time and so on but he could have rode it out better if he had a band rather than hired hands, Surround yourself with the new cool kids and you can get away with it sometimes by reinventing yourself like Prince and Madonna. Not many managed it though. The other option would be the ACDC or Iron Maiden approach of just doggedly putting your head down and ignoring everything else around you for year after year riding the waves, It's easy to forget now that both of them had their troughs too.
    Last edited by Seshmeister; 07-13-2020 at 10:08 PM.

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    Talk to anybody who worked in the music business at that time. When the Seattle grunge thing happened The bottom fell out of that whole 80’s glam rock thing overnight. Dave pioneered the big hair spandex thing. Van Halen brought the Sunset Strip back to it’s old glory and grunge killed it. It’s business. The record label’s management goes to the new thing and you become the has been. The only place there was any real fan base left was Japan. Dave became dated and he was out of ideas and MTV was going towards long form programming and producing reality shows. The whole 80’s thing died and it died quickly without any warning. Nirvana was the left hook nobody saw coming and it knocked a trend that was probably past it’s sell date anyways on it’s ass.

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    To be sure, Roth had a good run in terms of riding the crest of the wave, pop culture-wise. Nobody stays on the top of the heap forever.

    Certainly, the culture shifted in the early 1990s. Perhaps for no reason other than a big chunk of the fans of hard rock in their teens and twenties in the 1980s had less interest in that stuff as the 1990s dawned and they got out of high school/university. Probably explains the highly experimental nature of YFLM: by the time 1992 rolled around, why not essay a bunch of different styles and make an eclectic album? A straight-up hard rock album from Dave in 1993 probably wouldn't have moved the needle much anyway, regardless of how good it was. I can't remember offhand if YFLM was the last release Roth had re: his Warner Brothers contract.

    I'd agree with Sesh that by the time ALAE rolled around Roth (for a variety of reasons) was shuffling through band members, and that wasn't particularly helpful. I'd be lying if I claimed my initial reaction when seeing the ALAE video and hearing the tune at the time of release wasn't somewhat one of thinking it seemed a bit too typical in terms of what one expected from a Roth tune and video, despite finding the video amusing.

    When I think of the state of hard rock/heavy metal from 1985 to 1992, most of the bands who had experienced success prior to 1985...for the most part, their best work was behind them (Scorpions, Priest, Maiden, Dio, Halen, Ratt) and the latter half of the 1980s was dominated by your Warrants, Wingers, Poisons, Bon Jovis and the like: a definite downward trajectory.

    ALAE still holds up pretty well all these years later.

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    YFLM is a decent album, judging by his radio show Dave likes it more than the rest of his solo stuff. I posted before though I got on an 8 hour bus journey to London in 1994 and got this setlist. The stage and lights and showmanship was like a pretty good wedding band and I remember standing having a piss during Sunburn thinking 'Why did I bother? I like Sunburn to this day under certain circumstances in a kind of ASMR way but not on a Saturday night rock gig. WTF was he thinking?

    Thank you internet here is the set list from that night.

    Big Train
    Panama
    Experience
    She's My Machine
    A Little Luck
    Oh, Pretty Woman
    Just a Gigolo / I Ain't Got Nobody
    Sunburn
    Beautiful Girls
    Dance the Night Away
    Night Life
    Just Like Paradise
    Ain't Talkin' 'Bout Love
    California Girls

    Encore:
    Ice Cream Man
    Jump



    Also I can't remember the length of the gig but looking at that set list it must have been really short.

    To quote Woody Allen
    “There's an old joke - um... two elderly women are at a Catskill mountain resort, and one of 'em says, "Boy, the food at this place is really terrible." The other one says, "Yeah, I know; and such small portions."

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    Not a bad set list.

    Have only seen a couple of boots from that (YFLM) tour. One was a single videotape cam - looked like it was audience shot from a balcony - of a (if memory serves) full gig...maybe, Chicago? I dunno, I'd have to dig it up to check. I do remember the stage from the gig was very small, so it looked like either a club or a small theater.

    I have to be in a very particular mood to listen to YFLM from start-to-finish. First three tracks always knock it out of the park for me. Stuff like No Big 'Ting? Mmmm, admittedly, it's been a long while since I've had the urge to hear that one. But, not everything always works, and at least Dave was willing to do some different stuff.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nitro Express View Post
    Dave is a huge fan of Al Jolson and Al was famous for his blackface performances. The midgets in blackface are a tip of the hat to Al Jolson. The video was probably yanked because media companies that depend on advertising don’t like controversy. Is Dave a racist? We all know he isn’t.
    No one would survive today's "cancel culture" with a video like this.
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