(This page last updated: 14 November, 2008)
David Coverdale, from Whitesnake's 1987 tour book
David Coverdale name banner

Ah, Whitesnake. The world of music videos may well be one of smoke and mirrors, but at least these guys made the Grand Illusion lovely to look at! In fact, even though their heyday only lasted a few years, from 1987 to about 1990, I would venture to opine that Whitesnake managed to be one of the sexiest bands of the whole decade--due in no small part to their exceptionally hunky lead singer.

Of course, one might legitimately ask of just which Whitesnake I speak; the band became famous (or perhaps infamous) for its frequent personnel changes. David Coverdale has been criticized for that, but I think the reality is that rock and roll is as much a profession and a business as an artistic endeavor, and--as in any business--if someone is either not doing their job or creating disruptive friction within the work environment, then that's a perfectly legitimate reason to fire them and find someone who will get the job done. Granted, creative people can be a volatile bunch, and there are always other factors to take into account; it would hardly make good business sense to chuck your best songwriter out on his/her ear without a very good reason, for example. But given that DC has always been Whitesnake's primary songwriter and vocalist, and that the project was conceived of as a "concept" band, or an entity that would have an existence apart from its individual members, right from the start, I just fail to see what the big deal is. It's his band, and in my limited experience (I don't own anything like all the Whitesnake albums ever made) the changes usually improved the sound of the group, or at least didn't hurt it. Why argue with success?

Still, like most fans, I do have a favorite lineup, that of 1989's Slip of the Tongue album and tour, which consisted of DC on vocals, Adrian Vandenberg and Steve Vai sharing guitar duties, Rudy Sarzo on bass, and Tommy Aldridge on drums. That lineup typified the whole Whitesnake ethos; it was a happy meeting of some of the best musical talents in the world, and they looked good onstage. Okay, so two of the five were unnatural blonds during that period, but it was still an almost dangerous concentration of hunkiness. And in a way, it's really frustrating, because I was just getting into rock music in 1989, and--as with Kip Winger--my tastes were not yet evolved enough to truly appreciate men from the hard rock end of the musical spectrum. It took another ten years (and a few viewings of "Here I Go Again" and "Is This Love" on VH-1 Classic) before DC and Co. could truly take up their rightful place in my affections. Sigh; so close, and yet so far...

I have come to quite like David Coverdale, though, and not just because he's hot as all get-out--and regardless of what certain of his former colleagues might have to say about him. Perhaps it's because he's so thoroughly British; I admit quite freely to being an unashamed Anglophile, and if nothing else, David Coverdale has a very British sense of humor. Even when he's not quoting Monty Python's Flying Circus, I end up laughing out loud at something he's said in nearly every interview with him that I've ever read--and he's written songs that I just can't get through without giggling. If you own a Whitesnake album, you know the ones I mean; think "Slide It In" or "Cheap An' Nasty." This is 80's rock at its best--risqué, overblown, and entirely tongue-in-cheek. At the same time, however, it's also obvious that DC has a romantic side, and you only have to read an interview or two to realize that, over-the-top innuendo aside, he's actually quite an intelligent and articulate individual.

And I suppose it's really all of that taken together which makes him so very attractive on so many levels. He's got class, and he's comfortable enough with his own sexuality to play both the rogue and the lover with equal ease. Add in good looks and plenty of talent, and you've got, if you'll forgive the expression, quite a package, indeed!

Favorite Songs & Videos
As of this writing, I own four Whitesnake albums: Slide It In, Whitesnake, Slip Of The Tongue, and Restless Heart. I also have the album that DC did with Jimmy Page, and his latest solo effort, Into The Light.
Favorite Songs: "Slide It In"
Hee... I cannot get through this song without laughing... the innuendo is just too much... laughing emoticon
"Guilty Of Love"
"You can lock me away if you want, just as long as your arms are around me..." Sigh...
"Still Of The Night"
Classic
"Here I Go Again"
I think this was the first Whitesnake song I ever heard, and it's still one of the best
"Is This Love"
Not to be confused with the Survivor song of the same name; that one's an uptempo number, this is a lovely ballad. And DC sounds simply wonderful--I love it when he lets the Tarzan impressions alone for a while and just sings...
"Don't Turn Away"
This one is just beautiful
"Cheap An' Nasty"
Another one I can't get through without having a giggle fit...
"Kitten's Got Claws"
Ditto...
"The Deeper The Love"
OMG, I love this song... (And it just goes to show that DC's really a big ol' softie at heart winking emoticon )
"Sailing Ships"
Rather a thoughtful, philosophical track for this band, and beautifully orchestrated
"Wherever You May Go"
I've only listened to Into The Light a couple of times so far, but this was definitely the standout track...
Favorite Videos: "Still Of The Night"
It's an interesting moral dilemma--does one call the cops when one is being stalked by David Coverdale? thoughtful emoticon (Or does one just give in to the inevitable, and let him have his wicked way with you? evil laughter emoticon )
"Here I Go Again"
Classic. Everybody looks good here.
"Is This Love"
So romantic... sigh...
Favorite David Coverdale Quotes

"My only concession to living [in Nevada] is a couple of checkered shirts. I am very low on the 'cool' barometer."

[On what makes a good song] "[It] has emotional content, physical presentation, and tongue-in-cheek humor. There have to be 'smile lines.'"

"I like women much more than men. They're more honest, trusting and trustworthy--and most of them have more balls than most of the guys I know."

"The stage is where Whitesnake has always been at its strongest. Perhaps it's my British heritage, but I've always believed that a truly great band has to be able to put across their music in a live environment."

"There's usually a good reason why I've been an a**hole to anybody."

"The only critics I take seriously are the audience. If I wasn't coming up with the goods, I wouldn't be in this business."

"My job is to seduce the audience."

And you do it so very well, Dave... bouncygrin emoticon

[on his band's, ahem, "visual appeal"] "This is the sexiest music these guys have ever been involved in, and they are sexy f**kin' musicians!"

"...When I looked at the musicians, I didn't just look at their talents at playing their instrument, because Whitesnake is a physical presentation. Sarzo, for instance, who's like his royal rudeness when he's on stage, has never had sex material to work with. It's an extension of his instrument, it's like a marriage made in heaven."

Hey, even DC agrees with me about bass players! rolling on the floor laughing emoticon

"A lot of critics are very sorely pissed that I won't go away."

"I went through a period of musical history with the infamous Deep Purple where the idea of entertaining wasn't even considered. Most of the time you played with your back to the f**kin' audience and overindulged. I think that people who are scraping together money to buy a tee-shirt and a ticket to come and see you have the right to have a f**kin' dance as well."

"Isn't sex what rock'n'roll is all about? The music we play is very sensual and emotional. It touches the spirit in the same way that making love does. It's strong and powerful, yet has an underlying tenderness and sensitivity. That's what Whitesnake has that so many younger bands are missing. They bash at rock and roll like two teenagers in the back seat of a car. It takes the experienced hand to know how to take it slow and easy--how to build the excitement until there's a great climax."

Wow... what a metaphor...

"If you listen to the lyrics of my songs, one is the peacock, the other is the little boy lost. There's a very grey area in my life. I don't like the idea of middle ground. I like positive or something to fight against."

[on the Slip Of The Tongue album] "The lyrics explore the themes of love on different levels--mostly horizontal and perpendicular knee-trembling levels. We cover a multitude of sins on this album."

[on the SOTT touring lineup] "I want to be in the front row, I want to see this band! My God, to have the Devil's guitar-slinger on one side, a blond Viking from Hell on the other, Rudeness Sarzo licking everything that moves and the whole thing is anchored by Tommy Aldridge the octopus. Who wouldn't get a boner?"

::coughs:: Or the feminine equivalent thereof, anyway...

"Rock is serious therapy. It's good for all of us."

David Coverdale's Astrological Sign

Date of Birth: 22 September, 1951

Western Zodiac: Virgo/Libra (Earth/Air)
Chinese Zodiac: Rabbit (Earth)

I seem to have this thing for musicians born in a Year of the Rabbit--there are three of them on my "sexiest" list, more than any other sign. And DC is, from what I can determine, a fairly typical Rabbit; he certainly has all of that sign's sophistication and dislike of conflict. And while he is technically a Virgo, September 22 is the cutoff day between Virgo and Libra, and I would venture to opine that he's much more a Libran than a Virgoan.

The Chord & Sorcery Angle

If David Coverdale were a character in a fantasy novel, he would be:

An aristocrat. No question about it. I mean, a bit of a wardrobe change and cut down on the swearwords and you've practically got one of the English gentry anyway...

The fantasy/period outfit I would most like to see David Coverdale model is:

A more medieval version of one outfit he was wearing in the "Is This Love" video... ruffled white shirt, black everything else--or put him in armor and a surcoat. Yurrrrm... drooling emoticon

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