Jew or Not a Jew?

The case against David Lee Roth

If you look up David Lee Roth on jewhoo.com, a database website of famous Jews (no, I'm not kidding), the curator has himself a kvetch about people continually checking to see what "everybody already knows," which is that Roth is a lantzman. Today I am here to have a kvetch of my own: if David Lee Roth is the world's most renowned circumcised rock star, something is terribly wrong in the universe; may the moyl that cut him be consigned to an eternity of listening to Jackie Mason performances.

We, the Hebrews, beloved and embraced the world over (most notably by Aryans and Arabs), have graced the world with such musical menschim as Bob Dylan, Phil Ochs, Randy Newman, Joey Ramone, Lou Reed, Perry Farrell and Richard Hell. Okay, so we're also responsible for Kenny G, Michael Bolton, Neil Diamond and Richard Marx, but yin/yang is nothing but a philosophy that the Buddha—who I understand came from Yemeni stock—appropriated from Kabbalah.

Anyway, even though I'm much too lazy to indulge in anything resembling investigative journalism to get to the heart of the matter, I would put forth the proposition that Roth isn't really a Jew at all. The evidence is clear:

•Roth was born in Bloomington, Indiana. There are no Jews in Indiana.

•With his homeless-person tan, hideously stringy mop of straw topping his thinning, vein-encrusted pate and countenance so craggy it calls to mind the folds in Louie Anderson's torso, Roth has "ugly white guy" written all over him. No Jew outside of Golda Meir has ever been so painful to gaze upon; Roth is now so repulsive he looks like one of those albino karate twin guys from The Matrix: Reloaded.

•Jews simply do not behave as flamboyantly as Roth; we never choose to call attention to ourselves as we go about the business of world domination. We don't flit about onstage smelling of Aqua Net and testicle sweat; we don't prance about like Richard Simmons with vibrating ben-wa balls shoved up our ass. We prefer to work our subjugating power discreetly, behind the scenes, quietly colluding with Satan and controlling every facet of your foolish, goyish existence.

•Roth stood me up on an interview for this story. Jews never stand people up, especially other Jews. We keep appointments, we return phone calls, we meet deadlines, we come in under budget, we conduct business in a professional manner and we expect the same in return. If you don't comply with us, we tell God on you and then you'll be sorry because we are, after all, the Chosen People.

•Roth recently floated a bogus story to the press about how he apprehended a knife-wielding intruder on his property and held him at bay with a shotgun until the police arrived; of course, the police report told a totally different tale. Jews never personally soil our hands with violence or even claim to; we send our Italian friends out to fuck you up instead (we control the Mafia as well as the world banking system, print and broadcast media, all of Hollywood and, of course, the Dixie Chicks). In fact, I suspect that Roth planted this story just to prove to the world that he's more of a badass than intruder victim George Harrison, who was so physically unintimidating he'd have made a fine Jew.

Even if Roth didn't claim to be a Jew, I'd have a hard time with him. I couldn't stomach his "ain't I adorable" fancy-boy shtick with Van Halen, and it only grew worse once he went solo and started ruining perfectly good Louie Prima and Beach Boys tunes. I cannot tolerate the baseless high regard in which he holds himself, and it is he, perhaps more than any other rock star, who personified the Hairspray Metal Problem that afflicted this otherwise great nation in the '80s. Once Roth rather quickly became irrelevant, his attempted comeback in the early '90s was among the most embarrassing makeovers ever witnessed, as he scrubbed up his persona and image in a transparent endeavor to become a middle-of-the-road pop-rock guy not so far removed from, err, Michael Bolton. I still suffer nightmares about his contemporary appearance on the Today show, rife with witty banter.

And so now, it is with much shame and trepidation that I must admit to really liking Roth's upcoming CD, Diamond Dave, to be released in July. The CD has surprisingly—dare I say it?—tasteful elements of blues, jazz and R&B, guest spots by the likes of Edgar Winter and Nile Rogers, and a bevy of interestingly chosen and expertly executed covers, including the Doors' "Soul Kitchen," Jimi Hendrix's "If 6 Was 9," the Hombres' "Let It All Hang Out" (which here sounds like a Frank Zappa reworking) and the Beatles' "Tomorrow Never Knows" (here inexplicably retitled "That Beatles Tune"). Gone is the bombastic, grandiose fluff-metal we've come to expect from this guy, largely replaced by seriously fine musicianship and a new vocal style that is surprisingly—dare I say it?—deep and soulful. Questions of theological identity aside, I must report the truth, for this is what I'm paid to do, and David Lee Roth has belatedly made an album that's really, honestly, damned good, whether the vibrating ben-wa balls remain embedded up his quivering starfish or not.

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