Sometimes in life you make good decisions and other times you decide to join a rock band.
When one writes a song so great that it actually threatens a geomagnetic reversal of the poles or much like in superman…to reverse the rotational direction of the earth’s orbit, it comes with great power and great responsibility. One of these amazingly pleasurable superhero esque tasks is to personally visit and perform for the all powerful radio stations, who in fairness are largely responsible for your current state of rockstar-hood. For those of you who have watched the Travel Channel this is very similar to the street scenes in India where the hapless tourist dressed a bit to colorfully approaches a street vendor, throws a few shekels and awaits a performance by the dancing monkey. Except in this case there are no shekels and the tourists have well thought out names like “Boner”, “Bonsai Bill” or “Python Pants” and is trusty sidekick “Boob’s” Mcllroy or the classic duo “Gonzo and Beaner”
On this particular occasion we were asked to (or so we thought) perform live on air at the “holiest of pop holies” KISS FM in LA and recieve an actual audience with Rick Dees. I gather a few belongings, my ever faithful acoustic guitar and my soon to be wife and stroll through the hotel lobby thinking “this must be exactly what Keith Richards feels like”. We hop into our mandatory rockstar limo for practical reasons…how could the common man go on with his life if he were to actually stare into the face of greatness whilst we roll by in a common 4 wheeled vehicle? Safety of the public is always and will always be first in my mind.
We are being regally transported to our date with destiny. On occasion I steal a glance over to my wife wondering if she can appreciate the greatness of this moment and the vast talent of the man sitting next to her. Her silence and distant gaze indicates the answer is clearly yes. We arrive at the radio station, gather our things and proceed to the elevators to rewrite musical history. We enter as mortals but we will return as Gods. We walk and endless maze of hallways to the furthest reaches of this giant hit transmitting beacon to find ourselves in a rather large lunch room festooned with garland and about 8 to10 people wearing festive party hats complete with tiny plastic horns and those things that unfurl as you blow into them.
It becomes apparent in an all to sudden jolt of brutal reality that we are not there to perform on air but to be entertainment for the Friday pizza party blow out. I can feel myself getting dizzy. Is the room spinning? I’m fever sweating, faces in the room start to swell and then shrink…are they actually laughing at me? Is this a cruel joke? Have all my powers and fame been rescinded in a single moment of epic buffoonery?
I meekly grab my guitar and my clearly impressed wife and head for the elevator in great haste without saying a word to anyone. Our escape takes on a Kubrick-ian feel with miles of hallways, endless dead ends and wrong turns. I start to quicken my pace, terror crawling up my spine and as I glance over my shoulder I get a fleeting glimpse of what I am sure was 2 child like Rick Dees chasing me on Big Wheels. We finally break out of this terror maze looking like two people escaping a possible Bolivian kidnapping and frantically hail a cab on the street. (Another cruel twist of fame is how quickly you go from limo to cab again…in this case under 20 minutes) and head back to the hotel.
So the fallout was…they were the biggest radio station in the country and had they added Love Is On The Way due to our spellbinding pizza performance…it would have went into the top 5 if not to number one. This little momentary indiscretion cost me at least a few hundred thousand dollars in writers royalties and even worse I am still trying to convince my wife I am actually cool…an endeavor that has not yet yielded the success I was hoping for.
As an aside our singer the legendary Mr. Kramer remained behind to do a few liners to help promote the station and smooth things over. The little chestnut that went over the best was “this is Matt from Saigon Kick and Rick Dees is a #@$#!