My Record Collection: David Lee Roth, Eat 'Em and Smile (1986)
Updated: Mar 26
David Lee Roth did the unimaginable when he left VH at their commercial zenth. Most critics believed that Roth could not survive without VH, but DLR proved the world wrong by releasing his first full length solo record, Eat 'Em and Smile.
DLR did wisely to turn to renowned VH producer, Ted Templeman to sit behind the boards. I'm sure he knew that his new band would be compared to VH, so DLR recriuted some talented players to form his band. The band was made up of Steve Vai (guitar), Billy Sheehan (bass) and (Gregg Bissonette (drums). These players had developed a solid reputation and were quite respected by critics and fans alike. All doubts on Roth putting together a credible band that could stand toe to toe and VH were instantly resolved .
Eat 'Em and Smile truly represented a stripped down rock n roll record that sounded very much like VH's early recordings, much to the delight of hard core VH fans. Kudos to producer Ted Templeman for creating a record that was commercial enough to keep fans of the 1984 album engaged while possessing the old school VH sound to satisfy hard core fans.
Eat 'Em and Smile is considered to be DLR's best solo record. The album is well played and produced; with DLR showcasing his high flying capabilities as a showman and swagger infused rockstar.
Standout tracks on the record are, the classic opener Yankee Rose , the relentless Shybot, the bluesy Ladies Night in Buffalo and the rocking Goin Crazy.
In my opionon, Eat 'Em and Smile is still a great record and still sounds great today. DLR and his band are simply in top from and deserve to be in any music fan's collection.