Tuesday, May 22, 2012

At Camp David, President Obama and the entire G8 watched the finals of Chelsea Vs. Beyern, Munich for the European Championship. (Chelsea won) Really? Watching soccer, Barach? That is not going to help those first gay president rumors.

A California woman burned her legs and crotch when she claims two rocks she collected from the beach and put into her pockets burst into flames. Asked about the exploded neck massager next to her copy of “50 Shades of Grey,” the woman had no comment.
In Northern California, police found a man unconscious in the bushes a full week after his car accident. As horrific as this sounds, it could have been worse. He could have been inside a Red Robin restaurant during a six-year-old birthday party.

Tide has a product out called “Tide Washing Machine Cleaner.” Do we need this? If there is one thing that doesn’t need to be washed, I would think it would be a washing machine. What’s next? A vacuum to vacuum your vacuum cleaner.

The Chicago Cubs were swept by their cross-town rivals, the Chicago White Sox, in a three game series at Wrigley Field. This makes this the most embarrassing thing to happen to the Cubs all season. Until next weekend when they’re mathematically eliminated from the playoffs by Memorial Day.


Since you asked:
Having read the lion’s share of David Crosby, Keith Richards, Eric Clapton, Don Felder and now Greg Allman’s bios, I have come to this conclusion:

Being a rock star is just like any other job. Provided that job allowed severe on-the-job drug and alcohol abuse, paid for luxury travel, gave free food, threw parties with beautiful and sexually willing women, brought you the screaming adoration of 50,000 people and paid you millions of dollars.

Most of my friends and I went to college and got jobs. That is where you learn things like phone etiquette, dressing well, proper behavior in meetings, how to make and keep clients happy, how to appear to be professional and on time. In short, how to get things done and live like a grown up.

Rock stars never learn anything about any of those things because they don’t have to.

Imagine you said; “Screw college, I am going to be a musician or actor.”

If you have a ton of talent you can scrape by for many years giving music lessons and playing small clubs. Most will have to supplement their income waiting tables or driving a cab.

Then comes age 21-22. Your high school friends are graduating from college and getting real jobs. Some are getting married and having children. You are bouncing from crashing on one couch to another and or sleeping in a car.

This is the time of their lives that rock stars look back at with the most affection.

By this time music scenes have a way of condensing the people with marketable talent together. That is how Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young got together, the Eagles.

The big change is signing with a record label. What I didn’t realize is that is not the end game. Many talented artists sign with a label, but their first album bombs. Like Don Henley’s band “Shilo” and they are dropped. What we call fired.

Despite what whining rock stars say, record labels will do anything for their artists to get them to come up with a hit album or single. Booze, drugs, women, fancy cars, clothes homes, you name it. Sure, they signed crappy deals where these were paid for by their end of the record profits, but they get it.

But if their album doesn’t sell? Adios, rude, egotistical, unprofessional, under-educated selfish a-holes.

Rock stars call this intense creativity-stifling record executive and business manager-induced pressure.

The rest of us call it making a living.

But the agents and record companies were swindlers. David Geffen positioned himself as the agent and their record company owner. The definition of a conflict of interest. Just because you take a chance and sign an act, that does not entitle you to freely dip into their portion of the record sales.

Imagine a lawyer says he wants to be your lawyer. He wants to be your lawyer so he wines and dines you and sends you to tropical islands. How nice to feel that important. And isn't free stuff great?

Then you find out he paid for all of it with your savings as well as paying himself - again out of your savings - a hefty salary the whole time? Not so nice anymore, is it?

Saw a clip of the Rolling Stones right backstage right before they went out on stage somewhere in the US. This was circa 1975 when it just did not get any bigger than the Stones. When I was in high school, your status went up if you knew somebody who went to a Stones concert.

Will never forget when I got tickets to Led Zeppelin in 1975. I was a junior in high school and I went to the concert with two of the cooler kids in our high school because they were in a real band.

In high school you get branded with labels, and I was fine with mine as a “straight” football jock. When word got out I went to this cool concert with those cool guys, in the hallway the next week I got double and triple looks.

But I digress.

So there is Keith, Mick, Charlie, the wildly underrated guitarist, Mick Taylor, and Bill Wyman milling about killing time before they are announced.

The conversation was shockingly normal:

“How do you feel?”

“Is it still raining outside?”

“That is a cool shirt, where did you get it?”

“Can I get some Gatorade?”

“Got a light?”

Not sure what I thought the conversation would be like – maybe chanting some secret Satanic chant that only rock stars know that allows them to play great – but they sounded just like my old band before going up to play before 75 people in a dive bar.

Bill Wyman – the biggest lady hound of all the Stones, once tabulating over one thousand in one year – even more than Mick and Mick was legendary – looked and sounded like a guy about to go play soccer at a company picnic.