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David Lee Roth Sort of Comments on New Van Halen Book

Jesse Grant, Getty Images
Jesse Grant, Getty Images

Former Van Halen manager Noel E. Monk’s new memoir of his years with the band contains plenty of backstage stories, many of them involving David Lee Roth. Naturally, the outspoken singer was the first VH vet to respond to the book — and he’s done it in typically tongue-in-cheek Diamond Dave style.

As previously reported, Monk’s book Runnin’ With the Devil: A Backstage Pass Into the Wild Times, Loud Rock and the Down and Dirty Truth Behind the Making of Van Halen includes plenty of the rock-star debauchery fans would expect to find in a firsthand account of the group’s rise to fame.

Roth, for example, was allegedly captured in “several hours” of X-rated footage while fooling around with groupies, sparked a food fight that left Journey singer Steve Perry crying and covered in guacamole and at one point needed to be buckled into a straitjacket so he’d “settle down.”

Unsurprisingly, Roth hasn’t deigned to respond directly to any of these stories. Instead, in a series of tweets, he posted a trio of blanket responses to the “inevitable inquiries & questions” sure to be prompted by the publication of “this ‘book.'”

“Mr. Roth’s responses are as follows,” reads one tweet. “Answer No. 1: Yes Answer No. 2: Probably Answer No. 3: My lawyer says I can’t remember.” For his “final response,” Roth adds “What a long great trip it’s been, stay frosty.”

Given that this trio of tweets marks Roth’s first Twitter appearance since last October, it seems pretty likely he’s really said all he has to say about the book — and given that his fellow VH vets range from pretty private to borderline reclusive, fans will just have to wonder how the rest of the group really feels about the way Runnin’ With the Devil describes Van Halen’s early years.

Either way, Monk stands by his account as the only truly accurate representation; as he told Ultimate Classic Rock, “These schmucks write these books … They know nothing. They never sat with the band for 20 minutes. I lived with them. I was their manager for seven years. These were my friends.”

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