Diamond Dave has come under fire from his bosses at CBS radio, who have massively retooled the former Van Halen frontman’s fledgeling radio show.
Roth was back on the air Friday, but the suits at CBS canned his sidekicks, and stripped the show of the music beds that he had been talking over.
“I wouldn’t be surprised if they bring in a gal to read the weather or read the traffic,” Roth said during his show. “If I didn’t know any better, I would say they are trying to sabotage the deal, but I know they fully support and love me.
“[CBS Radio CEO/President] Joel Hollander did tell me I needed to be flexible, but I didn’t know he meant I would need a lubricant.”
Radio-industry trade publication FMBQ’s website features a detailed article about the whole fiasco.
David Lee Roth was back on the air this morning after being pulled by CBS Radio for the past two mornings. Well, “Dave” Roth was back, with some noticeable changes including the disappearance of his sidekicks and the over 40 different music beds that would rotate during his program.
“Actually, it’s Dave Roth,” the Rock star turned radio morning man explained today (3/31) on his program. “There’s a variation here. [I’m] no longer D Ro. We’ve been asked to get rid of the loops and the music and the general gang here.”
Down to just his board-op Hutch as the only other person in the studio, Roth said he was facing “disciplinary action” if he didn’t adhere to new “an entirely new format” set forth in letters issued by CBS Radio, which included talk without music beds, more discussion of currents news items, and the introduction of sports as a topic of conversation. Roth said he would be fired if he continued to do his program as he had been and that CBS Radio would not be obligated to pay out the remainder of his contract.
“I wouldn’t be surprised if they bring in a gal to read the weather or read the traffic,” Roth suggested. “If I didn’t know any better I would say they are trying to sabotage the deal, but I know they fully support and love me.” He later added, “[CBS Radio CEO/President] Joel Hollander did tell me I needed to be flexible, but I didn’t know he meant I would need a lubricant.”
In what is turning into a Mexican standoff, Roth defended his use of the music beds. “Playing twenty-seconds of a rock tune coming in … and twenty-seconds out is a little bit predictable and is familiar,” he said. “You know it from a lot of shows, so I thought let’s dispense with it entirely, at least we can try and keep some semblance of what we’re about here.”
As for why he was off the air the past two days, Roth said, “I’ll take the fall [for what happened in Florida]. I wasn’t following directives. I was playing a lot of black music and I was having a lot of black fun humor with Animal. We were playing foreign language IDs, which we gotta get rid of. I wasn’t really dealing with the news and the general traffic of the day, so we were taken off the air for a couple of days.”
Roth also addressed his tenure to date as a novice radio host. “How long do you think it would take to put a rock band together? Do you think that a band could get together in six weeks and become incredible? That’s essentially what I was called upon to do. And my ‘rock band’ would be compared with possibly the greatest face in the sport — Howard Stern — who had been around for twenty years putting together his art form. For the first four to six weeks, I floundered like a fish on the end of a pike.”
Roth also charged that his initial weeks on the air were damaged by CBS Radio not booking any guests on his program. “I asked some friends, not professional players, but people who I knew had a sense of humor to come in and prop me up, because somehow in the first two weeks they failed to book guests, even though we approved a number of folks. Somehow, it just got passed over and I didn’t have any guests for the first two weeks.”