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  1. #1
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    04.17.12 @ 03:02 PM
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    I'm interested to know what if any contributions you believe Dave made to Van Halen, the band. I know Dave fans will say "do you need to ask that" and some Sammy fans will probably say "he made no contribution" but I'm hoping everybody can put aside their biased feelings and give me an honest , objective opinion.

    First off, let me say that their is absolutely no denying the musical genuis of Eddie Van Halen and his underrated brother, Alex or Mike Anthony. They are among the greats! Dave on the other hand, I'm sure by his own admission is not the most gifted singer in terms of voice range. However, he did contribute a unique voice that enhanced but didn't overwhelm the music. Dave was like the football offensive lineman who made the big holes for the star running back to run through. For better or for worse, Dave made the name Van Halen a brand identity. When I heard the name Van Halen, I knew what to expect. He recognized what a great product the Van Halen brothers' had and knew exactly how to package, market and sell it. I'm not suggesting that Ed, Al & Mike wouldn't have been sucessful without him, but I honestly don't think they would have reached the heights they did without his contribution. Dave realized the importance of image in popular culture and he milked it for all its worth. Dave may have not contributed the killer guitar solo but his involvement in things like the design of album covers, tour programs, t-shirts and videos was just as integral to the success of the band. Without Dave, or somebody like him I think the band would have been at best, marginally more popular than say, a group like Rush, a hugely succesful band who sell plenty of records but their lack of flamboyancy get them little or no attention from the mainstream rock press. There's nothing wrong with this of course, but I suspect that many Van Halen fans were first attracted to the band for the image, attitude and persona just as much as the music.

    [ August 15, 2002, 08:42 AM: Message edited by: dropdeadlegs ]

  2. #2
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    04.17.12 @ 03:02 PM
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    Originally posted by dropdeadlegs:
    I'm interested to know what if any contributions you believe Dave made to Van Halen, the band. I know Dave fans will say "do you have to ask that" and some Sammy fans will probably say "he made no contribution" but I'm hoping everybody can put aside their biased feelings and give me an honest , objective opinion.

    First off, let me say that their is absolutely no denying the musical genuis of Eddie Van Halen and his underrated brother, Alex or Mike Anthony. They are among the greats! Dave on the other hand, I'm sure by his own admission is not the most gifted singer in terms of voice range. However, he did contribute a unique voice that enhanced but didn't overwhelm the music. Dave was like the football offensive lineman who made the big holes for the star running back to run through. For better or for worse, Dave made the name Van Halen a brand identity. When I heard the name Van Halen, I knew what to expect. He recognized what a great product the Van Halen brothers' had and knew exactly how to package, market and sell it. I'm not suggesting that Ed, Al & Mike wouldn't have been sucessful without him, but I honestly don't think they would have reached the heights they did without his contribution. Dave realized the importance of image in popular culture and he milked it for all its worth. Dave may have not contributed the killer guitar solo but his involvement in things like the design of album covers, tour programs, t-shirts and videos was just as integral to the success of the band. Without Dave, or somebody like him I think the band would have been at best, marginally more popular than say, a group like Rush, a hugely succesful band who sell plenty of records but their lack of flamboyancy get them little or no attention from the mainstream rock press. There's nothing wrong with this of course, but I suspect that many Van Halen fans were first attracted to the band for the image, attitude and persona just as much as the music.

  3. #3
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    04.17.12 @ 03:02 PM
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    Sorry for the double post!

  4. #4
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    03.29.06 @ 01:41 PM
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    Dave WAS Van Halen's public image back in the day. He also wrote all of the vocal melodies and all of the lyrics (I think he's underrated as a lyricist). Good analagy about Rush - a great band with great musicians that wrote great songs, just like Van Halen. But Dave is what put VH over the top. [img]graemlins/thumb.gif[/img]
    "You guys never forced your babysitter to put her dirty feet all over your back-bottom while you handled up onto a tattered quilt?" - Fake Greggo
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  5. #5
    Good Enough Rocket's Avatar
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    12.13.17 @ 08:48 AM
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    Without the chemistry of having Roth in the band, I don't think they could have been even half as popular as RUSH. Alvin Lee was the best guitarist of his time as well, but I don't see him showing up on any great guitarist lists and he was the pioneer speed rock guitarist.

    With VHalen, not only was their live show spectacular, but the diversity and quality of their musical contribution was second-to-none. This diversity was most likely driven by Dave. Women and Children First is a great example of this. This song wasn't called "Cabo Blues", or "Love on THe Bayou". It was titled and lyricized in the most unique manner any of us could ever imagine.

    That's Roth's contribution in my opinion.

  6. #6
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    02.17.17 @ 06:11 AM
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    Dave's and, for that matter, Sammy's contribution cannot be discounted or minimized. Ed is a musical genius without question but, like many geniuses, is prone to get lost in his own music. Dave and Sammy helped organized Ed's musical thoughts into a cohesive vision -- Van Halen.

    Without them, you get Ed's solo work, a/k/a VH3. Ughh.

  7. #7
    Good Enough wip5150's Avatar
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    02.05.15 @ 12:19 PM
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    Donor

    Dave (as well as Sammy) served as a musical barometer for Ed. Dave and Sam both had the stones to say, "no - that sucks".

    Dave clearly invented the modern frontman: Guys wanted to be him, girls wanted to fuck him. In his day, there was no better showman in rock than DLR. It doesn't matter that his voice isn't as good as Celine Dion's. Dave made Van Halen with his attitude. It really is impossible to measure what Dave's (and Sam's) contribution was to the band. Without Dave at the beginning, we might be on the Dokken message board.
    "There is a fine line between stupid and clever" - Nigel Tufnel

  8. #8
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    02.13.15 @ 08:56 AM
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    Donor

    Maybe it's just because I'm musically uneducated, but to me the voice is, and always has been, another instrument. I can appreciate instrumental music, but I really can't listen to it for very long because I want to hear that extra instrument, the vocal.

    A song like Ain't Talkin' 'Bout Love has a very simple, very repetitive, guitar line in it. It's cool, but I wouldn't want to hear it over and over again for 4 minutes without the "I heard the news baby" vocals bobbing and weaving in there.

    Dave has always been a very unique lyricist, it's the one thing that I don't think has ever let him down. It's a bonus that you don't really know what he's talking about most of the time, it makes his words seem all the more universal.

    So in that band you had the chemistry of a young guy re-shaping and re-working a lot of what passed for guitar playing, and at the same time you had a young guy with a very interesting and unique way of expressing himself lyrically and vocally. If you removed Dave from that equation in the mid 1970's, the whole thing would have been so radically different that it's ridiculous to even suggest that Van Halen would ever have succeeded to anywhere near the degree they did without him.

    I really don't believe it's possible to take the four original guys and put them in four simple categories based on their instruments. There is so much bleeding in and out between the lines of that original chemistry. Dave is no more important than any of them, but no less either. No Dave, no Van Halen in my opinion. [img]smile.gif[/img]

  9. #9
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    01.10.09 @ 01:07 PM
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    Originally posted by Glenn:
    Maybe it's just because I'm musically uneducated, but to me the voice is, and always has been, another instrument. I can appreciate instrumental music, but I really can't listen to it for very long because I want to hear that extra instrument, the vocal.

    A song like Ain't Talkin' 'Bout Love has a very simple, very repetitive, guitar line in it. It's cool, but I wouldn't want to hear it over and over again for 4 minutes without the "I heard the news baby" vocals bobbing and weaving in there.

    Dave has always been a very unique lyricist, it's the one thing that I don't think has ever let him down. It's a bonus that you don't really know what he's talking about most of the time, it makes his words seem all the more universal.

    So in that band you had the chemistry of a young guy re-shaping and re-working a lot of what passed for guitar playing, and at the same time you had a young guy with a very interesting and unique way of expressing himself lyrically and vocally. If you removed Dave from that equation in the mid 1970's, the whole thing would have been so radically different that it's ridiculous to even suggest that Van Halen would ever have succeeded to anywhere near the degree they did without him.

    I really don't believe it's possible to take the four original guys and put them in four simple categories based on their instruments. There is so much bleeding in and out between the lines of that original chemistry. Dave is no more important than any of them, but no less either. No Dave, no Van Halen in my opinion. [img]smile.gif[/img]
    I am musically educated, I play Bass first and foremost, guitar, and sing(and I have spent alot of time working on my singing and my vocals, alot of time), and I understand music theory, and I write also, albeit I have not been inspired to write in a couple of years. Let me say this, for I am not a musician that has an inferiority complex with signers. I have heard many musicians say that the voice is not an instrument, and to that I say, BULLFUCKINGSHIT!!!!

    The human voice is an instrument, and it is probably the most unique of all instruments, and in a way the most difficult to truly master.

  10. #10
    Top Of The World Carbo21's Avatar
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    02.09.12 @ 04:11 PM
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    Donor

    Dave's contribution to the mighty VH back in the day.....

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  11. #11
    Little Dreamer
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    07.04.07 @ 08:34 AM
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    At the minimum, Dave's contribution to Van Halen is what most lead singers contribute, and that is what melody to sing over the band's music.

    From what I've read, Ed, Alex, and Mike would lay down what they wanted (or what Eddie wanted)...and then give it to Dave to add the vocals.

    With some songs, the vocals follow the melody of the song and it's not necessary that difficult to come up with something (ex: I'm the one)....and with other songs, the vocals make or break the song and what the singer sings is very important )ex: The entire Fair Warning album!)

    Dave came up with some great melodies back in the day and was essential in early VH's success
    "No band has come close to duplicating the original Van Halen's truly distinct blend of showbiz bravado and musical ingenuity -- certainly not the band that continues to call itself Van Halen, offering up countless botched reunion attempts and a string of marginal post-Dave albums, and packing arenas just the same." CDNOW

  12. #12
    Atomic Punk Bob_R's Avatar
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    12.13.11 @ 02:09 PM
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    Donor

    Originally posted by Glenn:
    Maybe it's just because I'm musically uneducated, but to me the voice is, and always has been, another instrument. I can appreciate instrumental music, but I really can't listen to it for very long because I want to hear that extra instrument, the vocal.

    A song like Ain't Talkin' 'Bout Love has a very simple, very repetitive, guitar line in it. It's cool, but I wouldn't want to hear it over and over again for 4 minutes without the "I heard the news baby" vocals bobbing and weaving in there.

    Dave has always been a very unique lyricist, it's the one thing that I don't think has ever let him down. It's a bonus that you don't really know what he's talking about most of the time, it makes his words seem all the more universal.

    So in that band you had the chemistry of a young guy re-shaping and re-working a lot of what passed for guitar playing, and at the same time you had a young guy with a very interesting and unique way of expressing himself lyrically and vocally. If you removed Dave from that equation in the mid 1970's, the whole thing would have been so radically different that it's ridiculous to even suggest that Van Halen would ever have succeeded to anywhere near the degree they did without him.

    I really don't believe it's possible to take the four original guys and put them in four simple categories based on their instruments. There is so much bleeding in and out between the lines of that original chemistry. Dave is no more important than any of them, but no less either. No Dave, no Van Halen in my opinion. [img]smile.gif[/img]
    [img]graemlins/thumb.gif[/img] Especially the last sentence!

  13. #13
    Good Enough Rocket's Avatar
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    12.13.17 @ 08:48 AM
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    I also understand that Dave was involved heavily in the arrangement of the music. Remeber it wasn't until the last (1984) CD that Ed had his own studio to go in and record without the other members. For the most part the entire band was at the studio "shedding" the tracks. After 1984 I suspect Eddie and Alex were laying down all the tracks and then inviting the others in for a listen, quite like they do now.

  14. #14
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    01.10.09 @ 01:07 PM
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    Originally posted by Rocket:
    I also understand that Dave was involved heavily in the arrangement of the music. Remeber it wasn't until the last (1984) CD that Ed had his own studio to go in and record without the other members. For the most part the entire band was at the studio "shedding" the tracks. After 1984 I suspect Eddie and Alex were laying down all the tracks and then inviting the others in for a listen, quite like they do now.
    I have heard that Dave did have a hand in arranging songs and riffs.

    [ August 16, 2002, 12:42 PM: Message edited by: DLR'sCock ]

  15. #15
    Baluchitherium Guitar Shark's Avatar
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    03.01.10 @ 10:22 AM
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    Donor

    Originally posted by DLR'sCock:
    </font><blockquote>quote:</font><hr />Originally posted by Rocket:
    I also understand that Dave was involved heavily in the arrangement of the music. Remeber it wasn't until the last (1984) CD that Ed had his own studio to go in and record without the other members. For the most part the entire band was at the studio "shedding" the tracks. After 1984 I suspect Eddie and Alex were laying down all the tracks and then inviting the others in for a listen, quite like they do now.
    I have heard that Dave did have a hand in arranging songs and riffs.</font>[/QUOTE]Where did you both hear this?

 

 

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