As rock 'n' roll shows go, the David Lee Roth concert was nothing out of the ordinary. At least for the first three-quarters of the show, anyway.
Roth was his typical self: yelping like a wounded puppy, goose-stepping his way across the stage and nursing a bottle of favorite spirits. We've seen Diamond Dave do it all before, and quite frankly, we've heard it all before.A rendition of the hit single "Like living in Paradise" was OK, and a hard-hitting version of the Van Halen favorite "Ain't Talkin' Bout Love" was a nice touch. But current singles like "Stand Up" and "Skyscraper" came across rather listless, and King David was in danger of losing his subjects.
That's when the unexpected happened, and Roth used the unexpected to turn an average show into a barn-burner. Ironically, it was a potentially dangerous situation that served as the catalyst.
Here we had Diamond Dave puttering along in cruise control when all of a sudden someone from the audience threw a bottle onto the stage. The bottle shattered, sending jagged shards flying from one side of stage to the other.
Roth stopped in the middle of the song and apologized profusely and repeatedly to the audience for the interruption. "I just can't dance with broken glass up here," he said, as the roadies tried to clear the stage.
A few minutes later, Roth was back strutting his stuff when he again stopped the show after noticeably grimacing as he stepped on a piece of glass the roadies had missed. This time Roth was visibly angry as he told the crowd, "The next (bleep) who throws a bottle on stage, I want you to pass him up to the stage so I can personally kick his (bleep)."
The crowd roared its approval louder than it had all night and Roth, feeding off new-found determination, seemed to come alive. And as Dave got more into the show, so did the crowd until Salt Lakers were chanting along to every lyric and pummeling the air with clenched fists.
By the time he got to his finale, he had the crowd worked into a rock 'n' roll frenzy. And David Lee Roth milked it for all it was worth.
His grand finale consisted of scaling a rope ladder to a regulation-size boxing ring suspended high above the arena. There, he yipped and yelped his way through "Panama" as the boxing ring lowered to the floor.
Then he mounted a giant yellow surfboard, striking a conquering pose and singing "California Girls" as the surfboard flew across the arena toward center stage. By the time the band returned to the stage for an encore of the Van Halen classic "You Really Got Me," King David had proved once again he is still the undisputed king of strut.