How David Lee Roth's Old New York Phone Number Nearly Ruined A Marriage

Van Halen In Concert - Chula Vista, CA

Van Halen In Concert - Chula Vista, CA

Nancy French admits that she barely knew her husband, David, when the two got married in the '90s and moved from Tennessee to New York City's Gramercy Park neighborhood.

The couple ignored repeated entreaties from friends, neighbors and loved ones to take part in premarital counseling. So after a week of marriage when women started calling their home phone number looking for "David," Nancy started wondering if she had just made a terrible mistake.

She recalled the experience in a new column in The Washington Post.

It was plausible the first one or two callers were simple mistaken: David is a common name, after all. But Nancy began to wonder if her new husband was leading a double life as the "wrong number" calls came in at all hours of the day.

One day, with Nancy's faith in her young marriage and in her husband, attorney David French, wavering, she took a call from a man who later identified himself as David's agent.

The man on the other line demanded to know why a woman was answering his client's phone. When Nancy said she was David's wife, the voice on the other line became more serious.

"Are you —" he paused. "Pregnant? Expecting a little David Lee? A kid will really hurt our comeback."

"Lee?" Nancy asked. "My husband's middle name is Austin. What comeback?"

"I'm talking about David Lee Roth, the singer," the man replied.

Nancy soon came to find out that Van Halen's legendary Lothario had just gotten a new phone number.

With women constantly calling his old one, who could blame him? But Roth also kept his old number handy when he wanted to let a hopeful lady down easy.

Roth's new phone number was so fresh, in addition to his confused agent, Nancy once took a call from his father.

That day she put the puzzle together with Roth's agent. She remembers they started laughing as they figured it out, relieved that neither had been betrayed.

Over a few more weeks, Roth transitioned to a new line. Nancy and the other David's wrong number calls declined and the couple settled into married life with her husband of over 20 years now.

Read the full column here.

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