My friend, Colleen recently blogged about seeing a DLR fronted Van Halen concert in Baton Rouge. Reading her accounts of his line-flubbing, his glittery red brocade jacket and his kick-ass David Lee Rothness got me to thinking about the man that is DLR.
You see, DLR and I were colleagues at the now defunct 92.3 Free FM in New York City. The wise men who run CBS radio thought the best way to face a Howard Sternless morning slot was to plug in a radio neophyte: an aging former rocker and current EMS technician. That EMS technician was David Lee Roth. I was co-host of the 11pm - 3 am shift and he was at the helm from 6 am - 9 am. We were a mere hours apart every day.
A few weeks into my tenure at Free FM my headphones went missing. I didn't want to use the CBS cans (radio slang for headphones...I love saying cans) because God knows I didn't want revolting DJ herpes. I started a running on-air bit where I accused DLR of stealing my headphones. The audience got into it, calling in to plead with DLR to give them back. But DLR never bit. He, like most of the New York metropolitan area, wasn't listening to my show.
DLR only lasted a few months at Free FM. The few times I had to get up super early my alarm would go off and DLR would be on. I had to change the station because any time I heard DLR I would have a panic attack. The feeling I had is how I imagine dogs feel when they hear fireworks.
Right before he was fired, DLR decided to fight back against the naysayers. CBS Management would constantly give him notes (here's an idea "make sense," no one is listening, stop scatting on air) and he was having none of it. One famous morning DLR protested by refusing to do his show and instead read from the funny pages. "Let's see what Marmaduke is doing...well he's sitting in a chair and he's eating his owners dinner." I mean we are talking about a full-blown meltdown.
I was recounting "tales of DLR" to my friend, Ravi and he sent me the best email present in the world. A link to an MP3 of "Running with the Devil" with all tracks muted except the DLR vocal.
Play it below.
To quote the "Showgirls" DVD commentary, "It's time to revisit your bong."