When I was on vacation during this past Summer, I found a ton of 45 Singles with the Picture Sleeves at a place called House of Vinyl and I ended buying 7 Van Halen 45’s. And we’ve been through a few so far as seen below…
And now we are on to our fourth of the 7 and this is the final Roth Era track and was the second single from the album ‘1984’. The song “I’ll Wait” went to #13 on the Billboard Charts and despite its success, the band never filmed a video which totally surprises me as this the heyday of MTV. But it still worked for them without a video so they probably saved a ton of money. As most songs with Van Halen, the writing is always credited to Eddie Van Halen, David Lee Roth, Alex Van Halen and Michael Anthony. But this time, Dave was having trouble with some of the lyrics and melody so Ted Templeman brought in his buddy Michael McDonald from the Doobie Brothers for which Ted produced their albums as well. Ted had a knack for using people he worked with on many projects.
The song was inspired by a media ad for Calvin Klein. I guess Dave really was taken by the hot model in the ad that he taped the picture next to his TV and all the lyrics are addressed to the model in the picture. Hey, whatever works right!
The song is another very heavy synthesizer song, but where “Jump” was lively and bouncy, this song had a more serious tone to it. You could feel Dave longing to be with this model from the magazine. Alex’s drumming really standouts on this one as his sound is so prominent especially with the use of his Rototom drum kit, that sound is so distinct. The bass line on the song is actually all synthesizer as well. There is a keyboard moment during the song that sounds familiar to me like it was lifted from the opening of The Tubes song “She’s A Beauty” so I like that part a lot as it is also a great song. This might be one of my favorite songs on the album
“Girl Gone Bad” is a straight-up rocker and has a darker, tougher edge to it unlike the synth songs on the album. It is fast paced, hard driving and tough as nails. The song I believe is about a hooker that Dave became a little infatuated with. David has some great scat moments and even Michael’s bass is a driving fore on the song. This is one of the finest, best played songs on the album by the band. A true shining moment for the deep cuts.
And that was the final of the Roth Era songs. Next up will be three tracks from the Hagar Era, but which one will kick it off? We will see next week. Thanks for hanging around and see you next time.