Solving the problem of evil in the twenty-first century

Van Halen-Running With The Devil

When analyzing the song “Running With the Devil” by the 1970’s California hard rock band Van Halen, I was able to break down each verse by reading the lyrics highly closely. The song attracts the youth during this time in American rock n’ roll, actions of rebellion, and presented a inspiration figure toward the subject of Satan. The meaning behind the song is a young band’s life on the road during a major tour. They are living the “simple life”, but sometimes the simple life is not so simple at all because when the repetition in life starts to bore or annoy a human being you weaken yourself to be controlled by rage. This rage is what leads me to believe singer David Lee Roth is dealing with as he shouts “Running With the Devil” throughout the song’s chorus. The lyrical quote “I live my life like there’s no tomorrow and all I’ve got, I had to steal” explains that his life is not exactly what you would say of a “GOOD CHRISTIAN”. Being out alone on the road for so long has gotten the human mind to seek away from human reality, because of the detachment from the rest of society. Another quote within the second verse of the song is another reason why you would give up on good to become evil “I got no love, no love you’d call real. Ain’t got nobody, waitin’ at home” if not loved than whats worth living for, well vocalist/songwriter David Lee Roth explain to us through his lyrics in “Running With the Devil” is that that Devil is all he has left and he must keep on running in order to continue if he and the band want to continue to make it on tour. After analyzing this song I can now see that the Devil plays its own type of lifestyle throughout the ones who appeal to it.


2 responses

  1. After reading the lyrics, I kind of get the idea that David Lee Roth is saying that the “simple life” isn’t exciting enough for him. When he is at home, he doesn’t feel like he has anyone there for him. He only feels like he is loved when he is out on tour being appreciated by his fans. He feels like the “rock star” lifestyle is what’s meant for him, even if it rebellious and, in many people’s eyes, evil. So he is saying that he wants to “run with the devil.” Of course, there are many ways to interpret song lyrics, and mine might be completely different than what he intended for it to be, but that’s just what I though.

    April 27, 2011 at 9:33 am

  2. chrismfdaniels

    I want this song to be played at my funeral. I want a big picture of the South Park devil and me arm in arm riding in a giant 1970’s Cadilac. The comic sensibilities alone. The idea for living completely for pleasure is also pretty enticing. Charlie Sheen seems behind all those girls, coke, and millions of dollars and I imagine that David Lee Roth was also.

    May 14, 2011 at 10:01 pm

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