Manny Roth

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Manuel Lee Roth (November 25, 1919 – July 25, 2014) was an American nightclub owner and entertainment entrepreneur. Roth owned the New York establishment Cafe Wha?. In the early 1960s, Cafe Wha? provided a stage for amateur acts such as Bob Dylan and Bill Cosby. Roth was an uncle to David Lee Roth, best known as the lead vocalist for the band Van Halen.[1]

Cafe Wha? in Greenwich Village

Some biographical information as well as several of Manny's stories are chronicled in Crazy From The Heat, an autobiography written by David. Manny was David's first guest on "The David Lee Roth Show", a morning drive CBS Radio program which premiered January 3, 2006 (the show ended April 21, 2006). He guested during the 8:00am to 10:00am hours during the first day of the show and spoke much of his years in entertainment. He told first person accounts of meeting Jimi Hendrix, Richard Pryor (whom Manny affectionately called "Richie"), Bob Dylan, and Bill Cosby among others. Roth was born on November 25, 1919, in New Castle, Indiana.[2]

Roth died at his Ojai, California home on July 25, 2014 from natural causes.[3]


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  3. ^ AP Staff (August 2) "Manny Roth, founder of Café Wha?, dead at 94," Associated Press (New York) captured on August 2nd (no time).[1]
  1. Roth, David Lee (1997). Crazy From The Heat. Hyperion Books. ISBN 0-7868-6339-0
  2. Roth, David Lee's The David Lee Roth Show (2006). Airdate January 3, 2006, segment 3/4. Retrieved June 27, 2006, from