What if Diver Down had been a greatest hits record?
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  1. #1
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    Default What if Diver Down had been a greatest hits record?

    Diver Down seems to be one of the most divisive albums in the Van Halen catalogue - some love it ("it's a fun record") some hate it ("too many covers") - even Eddie is said to not be a fan. We all know how they did the "(Oh) Pretty Woman" single and then the record company wanted an album to accompany it. But what if instead of Diver Down, the band had at that point released a greatest hits album? They had 9 singles at that point - "You Really Got Me", "Runnin' With The Devil", "Ain't Talkin' 'Bout Love", "Jamie's Cryin'", "Dance The Night Away", "Beautiful Girls", "And The Cradle Will Rock...", "So This Is Love?" and "(Oh) Pretty Woman" - and while there's no requirement that those nine songs comprise the "Greatest Hits" (especially since some of them didn't even chart), you could take that and add "Unchained" and, although I know the popular choice would be "Everybody Wants Some!!", I'd maybe take "Romeo Delight" or "In A Simple Rhyme" as a second track from Women And Children First. Depending on time, maybe a 12th song, but no more than that as the best "Greatest Hits" records seem to top out at 10 or 11 (plus remember, Van Halen records didn't run more than 35 minutes usually, though I'd think they'd get a little more room for a "Greatest Hits" and hey, Doobie Brothers albums were typically in the low 40:00s, so what gives, Ted)? I know Ed's on record as not being a fan of "Greatest Hits" records, but I think he's missing out. When a band has been in record-tour-record-tour-record-tour mode, a "Greatest Hits" album offers a break without the band disappearing from the public eye. And who knows, maybe with a break at that point, Van Halen lasts more than a couple more years. Plus Ed gets more time to work something out for his riff that became "Dancing In The Street" to his dismay.

    Or they put out a live album. The band was still ascending and were coming off a tour which saw them open a few dates for the Rolling Stones (and that Tangerine Bowl picture would've been a cool album cover). Could've gone the Fandango! route with one side live and the other "(Oh) Pretty Woman", "Last Night"/"Hang 'Em High", "The Full Bug", etc. (although I don't know 17 minutes of live Van Halen would've been enough) or a three sides live or four sides with the "(Oh) Pretty Woman" studio track (a la Journey's Captured) - one thing I would've like to have seen if they did two or more live sides would've been after the audience faded after the last song, have like a 30 second gap and then "Happy Trails" - the laughter at the end could've been programmed into the runoff groove so it would just keep going until the needle was lifted!

    Of course, hopefully "Big Bad Bill (Is Sweet William Now)" would've found its way into the catalogue somewhere as well eventually!
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  3. #2
    Runnin' With The Devil
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    A Fandango or Captured type record would have been cool. I listen to both of those a lot, frankly, more than Diver Down.

    The Party's Over might be my favorite Journey song. It's certainly up there.

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    Then we would have missed out on all the badass original tracks that are on DD...
    "The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants."

    ďA patriot must always be ready to defend his country against his government.Ē

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    Personally, I wouldnít want to lose anything off of DD except Dancin, there are killer tracks on there. Little Guitars, Full Bug, Secrets, Hang Em High, plus it was a killer tour with a great set list. Greatest hits off of 4 albums would be a waist. Here I agree with Sammy, bands only do those on the downside of their career


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    I love that record - to me, DD is still the best summer record ever released.

    IMHO, there is not a low point on it. That's why I never skip its tunes.
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    I'm thinking most of the Diver Down songs would've still eventually existed. Maybe what we now know as 1984 ends up different - "The Full Bug" side by side with "Drop Dead Legs", "Cathedral" leading up to "Panama", etc. And then the songs from what we now know on 1984 that don't make that version end up on the next record...
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