Heart of Steel: Concert Reviews

David Lee Roth - Westbury Music Fair
June 2003

Review by Keith McDonald

As I strolled into a sold-out Westbury Music Fair in Westbury, NY, I realized that most of the crowd there were in their late 20's to early 30's, if not older. It hit me that Van Halen has been around for quite some time now. Since their debut in 1978, Van Halen has been a huge influence on rock 'n' roll (and metal). As we wait to see what move Eddie and Alex make in the pursuit of their vacant singer slot, fans alike of both Halen eras are left with seeing either Dave or Sammy perform solo. After Sam and Dave teamed up last summer, Dave has elected to go out on his own this summer as he promotes his new album 'Diamond Dave'.

Dave and his band hit the stage with a reckless abandon opening the show with 'Hot For Teacher' and quickly following up with 'Mean Street'. Just as you thought it was going to be all Van Halen classics, Dave surprised all with Skyscraper's 'Just Like Paradise'. The last time I had seen Dave on Long Island, back in '99, he did all the classics with just two solo hits, 'Yankee Rose' and 'Tabacco Road', which to much of my surprise were not on this night's set list. He added 'California Girls', 'Just A Gigolo' and a new song from his forthcoming album that sounded nothing like anything that Dave has done before.

Dave supplied the usual high energy that only Diamond Dave can deliver, talking to the crowd and the pretty ladies that we have grown to miss so much from today's bands. A lot of frontmen can learn much from Dave on how to put together a great show. It's not always about great songs, but about giving people a good time, a little bang for their buck. The real surprises were some of the obscure songs that we haven't heard at a Dave show, most notably 'D.O.A.' and 'Pretty Women'. As I watch the show go a long I noticed that Dave and the band wasted little time as they just pumped out song after song. Dave may never rejoin Van Halen, but I know I can always get a great show when he comes to town with his solo band.


Set list
Hot For Teacher
Mean Street
Just Like Paradise
Runnin' With The Devil
You Really Got Me
California Girls
Somebody Get Me A Doctor
Cradle Will Rock
Just A Gigolo
Going Crazy
Shoobop (new song)
Dance The Night Away
Ice Cream Man
Everybody Wants Some
Pretty Woman
Ain't Talkin' 'Bout Love