Strummin’ With The Devil – The Southern Side Of Van Halen: A Tribute (2006)

Strummin’ With The Devil: The Southern Side Of Van Halen – A Tribute (2006)

1. JUMP – David Lee Roth with the John Jorgenson Bluegrass Band
2. JAMIE’S CRYIN’ – David Lee Roth with the John Jorgenson Bluegrass Band
3. I’LL WAIT – Blue Highway
4. RUNNIN’ WITH THE DEVIL – The John Cowan Band
5. DANCE THE NIGHT AWAY – Mountain Heart
6. AIN’T TALKIN’ ‘BOUT LOVE – Iron Horse
7. HOT FOR TEACHER – David Grisman
8. FEEL YOUR LOVE TONIGHT – Tony Trischka, Dudley Connell, Marshall Wilborn, Dave McLaughlin
9. PANAMA – Cornbread Red
10. UNCHAINED – Iron Horse
11. ICE CREAM MAN – Larry Cordle
12. AND THE CRADLE WILL ROCK… – The John Jorgenson Bluegrass Band
13. COULD THIS BE MAGIC? – The Nashville Bluegrass Band
14. ERUPTION – Dennis Caplinger
15. JAMIE’S CRYIN’[RADIO EDIT] – David Lee Roth with the John Jorgenson Bluegrass Band

Strummin’ With The Devil official website

Every now and then a band, or a solo artist, I enjoy comes up with a project that really piques my interest: a solo record, a tribute, something way out of left field! Sometimes it’s hit or miss…..

– Gene Simmons’ solo album, Asshole, was a miss.
– David Lee Roth’s last studio album, Diamond Dave, was a hit (at least for me).
– Pat Boone’s In A Metal Mood was just OK.
– Various unplugged albums…..depends on the band.

So when I heard that David Lee Roth was going to perform a Van Halen song, blue-grass style, on the Tonight Show with Jay Leno last week, I stayed up past my bedtime and watched intently. Maybe it was seeing one of my favorite frontman performing on T.V., maybe it was the boldness to bastardize a Van Halen classic by going Country, either way I was hooked.

And it wasn’t bad. Diamond Dave did a decent job giving Jump a different interpretation. His backing band was top notch, the dude playing the banjo hit that solo note for note. I shut the T.V. off and made up my mind: I was going to the record shop in the morning and dropping my 10 bucks on the disc!

It starts off well with two from Diamond Dave, Jump and Jamie’s Cryin’. The first stays traditional to the original, except for the fiddle, steel guitar, and banjo doing the solos! It’s still a decent cover of the classic. Jamie’s Cryin’ is slowed down, Dave is subdued, very casual. Again, a decent cover, Dave and the John Jorgenson Bluegrass Band make their own version sound very different from the classic.

And that ends the DLR involvement until the end when we get the radio edit for Jamie’s Cryin’. Too bad because I’d rather hear him do ALL the tunes. On to the rest…..

…..and that’s how to term it, “the rest”. From Track 3 to 14, they’re all unique cover tunes. All done very professionally, musicianship top-notch, and the interpretations run from traditional (Ice Cream Man) to barely recognizable (Could This Be Magic?), save for the lyrics. Seeing that I know nothing about Bluegrass and/or Country, I can’t really come out and say if a certain band or performance was bad. My listening experience was pretty good for the first three times, after that, I found myself skipping tracks. After that, I started to just play the DLR tunes.

All in all, a decent novelty record. I won’t be reaching for it much in the future but it’s justified Diamond Dave’s involvement and by the final price…..

$9.99 sale price (save $5)
– $2.00 coupon
– $3.00 credit (traded in a scratched copy of Kittie – Spit)
$4.99 final price

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