Sunday, November 3, 2019

"That's Life" by David Lee Roth

Song#:  2941
Date:  11/22/1986
Debut:  94
Peak:  85
Weeks:  4
Genre:  Rock

Pop Bits:  Roth's first full-length album, Eat 'Em and Smile, was a #4 platinum seller mainly due to the LP's first two singles, the #10 Rock/#16 Pop hit "Yankee Rose" and its follow-up "Goin' Crazy!" (#12 Rock/#66 Pop). His label attempted to keep things going with this third single, but it just couldn't grab an audience. It fell off the Pop chart after a short month while not even making the Rock chart.

ReduxReview:  This album closer was meant as a throwback to the standards Roth did on his Crazy from the Heat EP. It was actually a good choice for Roth and his lounge lizard alter ego, but it really didn't need to be released as a single. I think by this point folks were getting tired of Roth's goofy shtick and while this made for a fun final track, no one really wanted to hear Roth whacking away at another standard on the radio. He already played that card with "Just a Gigolo/I Ain't Got Nobody," so this one shouldn't have been dealt out. I think he got the message as he avoided cover tunes on his next LP.

ReduxRating:  4/10

Trivia:  Double Shot!  1) Although only three singles would be officially released from the album, another track would do well at Rock. Roth's remake of "Tobacco Road" would reach #10 on that chart. The song was originally written and recorded by John D. Loudermilk in 1960. His single was not a hit. Four years later, the tune was picked up by a UK garage rock group called The Nashville Teens and they would be the first artist to make it a hit. The single got to #6 in the UK and #14 in the US. The only other artist to reach the US Pop chart with the song was the San Diego rock band Jamul. Their 1970 version peaked at a minor #93.  2) This song is a remake of one made famous by Frank Sinatra. Sinatra's version became a #4 Pop/#1 AC hit in 1967, but he was not the first to record the tune. Jazz singer Marion Montgomery first got the tune and recorded it in 1964. Her single did not chart. Then R&B/jazz singer O.C. Smith recorded a version in 1966. His take on the tune didn't chart either. However, Sinatra heard Smith's version on his car radio and immediately wanted to record it. He did in 1966 and the single was released late in the year. It went Top 10 early in '67. Thus far, Roth is the only other artist to reach the Pop chart with a version of the song.


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