Maria Milito

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Ted Nugent Thinks David Lee Roth Is Crazy

Ted Nugent has every bit of respect for David Lee Roth the frontman, but he blames Roth's drug use for why they didn't become friends.

In a recent podcast appearance, Nugent was asked for his feelings on the Van Halen frontman, who announced his retirement earlier this fall.

The Motor City Madman began by calling Roth's Van Halen era a "smile eruption in our life." He further compared Diamond Dave's presence onstage and on record to that of James Brown or Wilson Pickett.

But he noted that having met Roth "a few times" over the years, he was constantly frustrated with Roth's state of mind.

"I've always been militantly against substance abuse. And it's an absolute rime — literally and figuratively — and David's a perfect example," Nugent said. "Again, I love him — I hope he's happy, I hope he's healthy. He seems to know what happiness and health is; God bless him. Thank you, David, for enriching our lives with your incredible music. God bless you.

"But tragically — and this goes to Eddie [Van Halen] too, and my encounters with Jimi Hendrix and so many people — you couldn't have a meaningful dialogue. It was all stoned disconnect."

Nugent went on, offering Roth's longtime Van Halen nemesis Sammy Hagar as a "perfect example" of someone who operates closer to ground level, where it's easier to have a conversation.

"We have a meaningful, man-to-man, human-to-human, fun, deep bullshit session, because he's in tune with himself, and he's real good at getting out of tune with himself," he lamented.

Over the years, Nugent says he's been fortunate to meet so many of his heroes and groundbreaking contemporaries. But many of them let him down because "they were drunk or stoned."

"Wouldn't it have been great for a smart-ass like David Lee Roth and a smart-ass like Ted Nugent to discuss the art of smart-ass?" Nugent concluded. "I would have loved to have had that conversation, but there was no chance for it. The guy was out of his mind."


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