Yes, it’s makeup.

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It’s hilarious to see all the buzz on Twitter tonight after Rick Springfield’s appearance on “True Detective.”

For all of those who haven’t been following his career and remember him only from the 1980s, yes he was made up to get that creepy look. (And just a reminder – the 1980s were 30 years ago, this is a TV show where people are acting and portraying made-up people and – yes, people do age over a 30-year period.)

And here’s the “before” picture:

rick_springfield_before_hair

When these photos were taken, it was around the time he was filming “Ricki and the Flash” – his movie with Meryl Streep that is coming out on Aug. 7 – where he plays an aging rocker.

And this is a recent pic:

Actor Rick Springfield poses for photographers to promote his upcoming film

Actor Rick Springfield poses for photographers to promote his upcoming film “Ricki and the Flash” at the Summer of Sony photo call in Cancun, Tuesday, June 16, 2015. (AP Photo/Christian Palma)

And this:

(For some reason this photo was posted in reverse- his tattoo is actually on his left arm – and he usually signs them XO, but maybe he was out in the sun too long.) Oh, and he has a new CD coming out this year – and possibly even a sequel to his best-selling novel.

Did I mention he’s 65?

OK, that’s all I wanted to say. Buh-bye.

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Blogging to inspiration

It’s nearly a year since I first “rediscovered” Rick Springfield, after finding an interview on our local public television station with him discussing the recent release of “Magnificent Vibration.” During the interview I learned that he had also written a memoir and released a few CDs and before I knew it, my teenage RS obsession kicked back into full gear – even though I left my teenage years decades ago.

Not long after I listened to the interview, I discovered that RS himself was due to come to town for a concert about a week later. Unfortunately we were going through a difficult time financially and there was no way I could get tickets. I even tried to think of a clever way to sum up my desire to see the concert in a desperate plea for tickets in a 140-character message to his Twitter account. I don’t remember what it was – it wasn’t clever at all – and, feeling rather ridiculous, I quickly deleted both that and my desperate Facebook post. I now know that he never replies to any FB or Twitter posts from anyone (or at least he doesn’t appear to) and I doubt he even handles his accounts, but that didn’t occur to me at the time. (I’ve noticed other fans occasionally do the same thing before a show, which makes me feel a little better that it’s not just me who felt compelled to do that.)

But anyway, I was surprised how painful it was to know he was only a few miles away and I couldn’t go. But I did spend a lot of time over the next few weeks catching up – lots of Googling, watching YouTube videos, listening to and reading interviews, reading his memoir and his novel, and watching the “Affair of the Heart” documentary about him and his fans. Then I just couldn’t contain it anymore – I had to start writing.

First, I put together a blog focused on “Late, Late at Night,” where I compiled as many videos as I could find, divided by the chapters of the book in which RS wrote about the specific song. I did it simply because I searched for the YouTube videos as I was reading it and thought that maybe somebody else would find it useful.

But that wasn’t enough. I had to examine my obsession further and I didn’t want to irritate my husband, friends or acquaintances by talking about it nonstop. So I started this blog, in hopes that others who felt the same way would come across it in their own RS discovery.

But then it turned into something more. As I pulled out boxes of old journals from the garage – and found my diary from 1982, when this obsession started – I not only found more RS content than I anticipated, but I also realized how much songwriting has been a part of my life since high school.

Three months after I started this blog, tickets went on sale for a concert about four months in the future (it fell on what would have been my mom’s 70th birthday). As a result, the blog kind of morphed from looking backward to review my RS memories (which included meeting him once at a music store in 1999) to looking forward in anticipation. Out of all the places in all the years he’s traveled, we would be in the same vicinity. My mission became to have him see this blog.

Why this is, I cannot say for sure. I guess it’s just a need to connect with a person who has had such a big influence on my life. To just have my own personal “hey, thanks” and not just be one “like” in a Facebook post along with thousands of other fans. I knew I wouldn’t be able to be one of his fans who is able to follow him around to multiple shows throughout the year, scoring a seat in the first few rows each time. I’m not sure why it seemed that a few words among trillions floating around in cyberspace might have an impact, but I thought I’d try. I only told a handful of people about the blog since I wasn’t sure what would become of it.

Anyway, all the details are in past blog posts, but I was able to meet him at the March show and give him a little piece of paper with this blog address. And then I met him again in April, when I somewhat incoherently mentioned the blog again when I met him after a second show. I couldn’t bring myself to actually ask if he read it and to this day, I have no idea if he has. I’m sure I’ll scour every lyric in his upcoming CD to see if there’s any reference to it, but I’m not holding my breath. (He did, however, appear to me in a dream and mouth the words, “I saw the blog” to me, so that’s something.)

But despite the uncertainty that my mission has been completed – aka RS seeing this blog – something unexpected came out of writing the blog. When I was going through my journals, I remembered many of the melodies that went along with songs written among the journal pages – even the early ones from the 1980s. I remembered how much I enjoyed writing songs and reading those words brought back memories of those times in my life those songs represented – both the good and the bad.

And earlier this year, I started writing songs again. Although I’ve written lines with melodies here and there through the years, it’s been about 14 years since I’ve written full songs on guitar (back before I had kids – when I actually had hours of uninterrupted time to devote to it). My guitar playing is very rusty and the recordings are far from professional but I’m having so much fun. (You can listen to them here, but please don’t judge them too harshly…I realize they need some work.) I have written seven songs so far this year – the lyrics and the melodies – but the music itself is more of a challenge. (RS, you seem to be in a collaborative mood these days – want to take on a new project?)

I’m not sure how long I’ll continue writing this blog – there have been so many times when I felt like I had nothing else to write about but then two days later an idea popped in my head that I had to get out – but I just wanted to say thank you to RS for another year of inspiration. XO.

Super busy guy

Ever wonder how a successful rock star/actor/author spends his time?

Well, take a look at this past week:

June 9: In Nashville filming a bit for the Country Music Awards with Arnold Schwarzenegger.

June 11: Concert in Parker, Colorado (unfortunately for his fans, it got cancelled due to a big rainstorm, such a bummer)

June 15-16: In Cancun, Mexico for the Summer of Sony Pictures Entertainment 2015, meeting with members of the press to promote his new film, “Ricki and and the Flash,” which comes out Aug. 7.

Actor Rick Springfield poses for photographers to promote his upcoming film

My favorite photo from the Summer of Sony photo call in Cancun on June 16 – promotion for “Ricki and the Flash,” which comes out on Aug. 7. (AP Photo/Christian Palma)

Here’s a video from that day (there’s nothing wrong with your speakers – there’s no sound):

 

He also ran into Adam Sandler in Cancun. And a fan with very sharp teeth.

Oh, and his guest spot in “True Detective” is reportedly airing on HBO this weekend, although his role is very mysterious, nobody seems to know what it is.

And all this is during a break in touring – both his full-band tour and his Stripped Down tour (his tour with Loverboy and the Romantics starts in late August). And he’s probably been finishing the sequel to “Magnificent Vibration” in his spare time.

He definitely keeps his fans entertained! (Be sure to take care of yourself, RS – don’t let those fans with sharp teeth get too close.)

Play it again: CMT Music Awards show

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OK, fine. Jessie’s Girl it is. Although there are hours and hours of other songs by Rick Springfield over the past 40 years, if that’s the one that will make people take notice of him again, fine, play it again.

If Jessie’s Girl is the song that keeps getting mentioned over and over again in tweets and what draws people to his concerts, fine, play it again.

For those of you who missed it, he was on for a few seconds in a pre-taped segment on tonight’s CMT Music Awards Show, busking on a Nashville sidewalk. Arnold Schwarzenegger is driving by as a Uber-spoof chauffer (Tom Arnold is one of his passengers) and a woman in the backseat (one of the show’s hosts) points out RS on the sidewalk. Arnold abruptly stops the car as RS finishes singing Jessie’s Girl and Arnold asks him to play it again. “Come on dude, I already played it like 10 times,” RS replies. Then Arnold gives him that “don’t mess with me” look and responds in a Terminator-ish voice, “Play it again.”

So if a few lines of Jessie’s Girl on a national country music awards show that attracts a large audience (about 3 million viewers tuned into last year’s show) is what’s necessary for RS to get the exposure he deserves, then fine, play it again.

To see the video, see this article here.

One in a Million: The beginning of a song

I recently decided that I’ve waited long enough to start recording the songs I’ve carried around in my head for years, as well as the songs I’ve written over the past few months. If not now, when?

So although my guitar and piano skills are both very rudimentary, I thought I’d get started anyway. Both yesterday and today I stole away whatever quiet moments I could to try translating the melody for “One in a Million” from my head to piano.

Since I’m just using a digital tape recorder and a piano, I had to first write the music (it’s very basic) to go with my melody and then remember both the notes and the lyrics at the same time – and play and sing them as I wanted them to sound. It was much more complicated than it sounds! I hit “record” at least 75 times, if not more. With some of the recordings, you can hear my kids playing upstairs.

I wasn’t able to get through the whole song without any errors – and there are still parts where I haven’t quite found the right notes yet – but I did manage to get through the first few lines and I feel like it’s an accurate translation for what was in my head.

So, here is the debut of the beginning, current version of “One in a Million”:

(In case anyone is interested, the lyrics are in this post from January).

Update: Finally recorded the whole thing. Here it is (July 12,2015):

The resurgence of ‘Bruce’

With the recent news of Bruce/Caitlyn Jenner, all of a sudden there’s activity on Twitter about Rick Springfield’s 1980s song “Bruce,” a humorous look about him being confused with Bruce Springsteen. Somebody posted this video, which is so fun to watch – switching back and forth from photographs/posters I remember from 30 years ago (some of which I remember hanging in my bedroom as a teen) to current photographs (which are not hanging in my bedroom – my husband wouldn’t appreciate that).

Maybe because its getting late and I’m tired, but watching the video also kind of messed with my brain a little. Flashing back and forth between decades was a little emotional, as each photograph brought a different reaction. 1970s RS was before my time so although I had “Beginnings” as a teen, he didn’t look like that by the time I discovered him. Photos of 1980s RS brings back feelings of sweet nostalgia – he was just so cute and it’s weird to think he was more than 10 years younger than I am now (it makes my brain hurt trying to comprehend that). The most recent photos brought me the greatest warm fuzzies (do you remember that story? They are the opposite of the cold pricklies.) I think it’s because that’s the RS he is today. And the younger RS hadn’t yet experienced all the soul-searching or self-discovery that made him who he is now.

And by the way, I never understood how anybody could confuse RS with Bruce Springsteen (no disrespect intended, but I just don’t get it.)

Depression and songwriting

This article on the Scary Mommy blog just gave me some insight into some of RS’s lyrics. Wow.

10 Analogies That Perfectly Capture Depression

These two songs are what immediately came to mind, but I recognize these analogies in some of his other songs as well:

“One Way Street”: “But I go to sleep at night on a bed of nails wrapped up in chains and wire”
“I Hate Myself”

To be able to channel depression into great songs is an amazing gift.