For the love of dogs

Aww, these pics from Rick Springfield’s Facebook page today are so darn cute.

There have been lots of shirtless RS concert pics circulating online these past few days – accompanied with “This is what 67 looks like?!”-type of comments. Those pics are nice to look at, of course, but these dog pics are just so sweet and show a different side of my favorite rock star.

RS fans know of his affection for dogs – and even the non-fan probably has an idea if they’ve seen the “Working Class Dog” and “Success Hasn’t Spoiled Me Yet” album covers.

My youngest son has this natural love for dogs, too. I got my dog before I even met my husband so my kids have had a dog in the house their entire lives. The older two will occasionally play with him and pet him, but my youngest connected with him right away and just LOVES him. Once when he was about 4 or so, he suddenly started crying and when we asked him what was wrong, he said he didn’t want our dog to ever die.

Shavuot at the park

My youngest son befriending a dog at the park.

Whenever we go to events where people bring their dogs, we end up spending a significant amount of time going up to people to ask if he can pet their dog.

It’s because of RS’s love for dogs that the charity selected for the fan-based grass-roots Rick Springfield Birthday Charity Campaign is the Linda Blair Worldheart Foundation, which helps take care of dogs. According to the campaign website, happybirthdayrick.com, the total raised so far this year is $5,419, as of Aug. 25.

The campaign continues through Sept. 3. When you donate to the campaign, you get raffle numbers and are eligible to win a number of prizes. The GRANDEST prize is a soundcheck for two and other prizes include a sketch by RS, guitar pics, books, signed items and a bunch of other things. (Check the website for a list.)

So next time RS is in your town and you’re looking to increase your chances of meeting him, maybe try hanging out in a Starbucks with your dog. : )

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Happy 67th, Rick Springfield!

Although the celebrations started weeks ago, the big day is finally here – Rick Springfield’s birthday! Happy 67th birthday, RS!

It’s incredible how one person can inspire so many people. Not only through the music created and shared, but by following their passion and persevering through difficult times.

RS has shared so much of his life with the world, through his songs and memoir and during interviews. For some fans, his music has gotten them through difficult times and for others his concerts provide a nostalgic way to reconnect with their inner teen. Some fans have a two-way connection with him, from attending his shows and fan getaways for years and sharing their life stories during meet-and-greets – he might even recognize them and know them by name.  For many, like me, this connection is mainly in their head – any actual encounters are very brief (like maybe a photo and a word or two) and he doesn’t know anything about them. But either way, lives are changed for the better  because of the connection he’s made with them simply by living his life.

It’s a special person who can inspire others by the life they live. Perhaps there are times when he didn’t make the best choices – as he detailed in his memoir – but life offers many opportunities to change and grow and by sharing his life’s highs and lows in “Late, Late at Night” and being honest about his struggles, it gives hope to many people that they, too, can get through their own struggles. And despite what he’s expressed about how he’s felt about himself through the years, I think he seems like a really good, kind person. Lots of people put out good music, but it’s really the person behind the music that makes RS one-of-a-kind.

(Also a special shout-out to his wife, Barbara, because it takes a special person to let their loved one pursue their dreams so wholeheartedly and she appears to be an incredible support to him through the years. And to put up with all of us fans, wow.)

For me personally, RS has been an incredible muse, inspiring me to start writing songs again after a 10-year hiatus, something that gives me much joy. And now my 10-year-old has recently started writing songs so the inspiration carries through to another generation.

Happy birthday, RS – thanks for your all your music, your humor, your inspiration. May you have a very happy birthday and know that the 67 years of your presence here on Earth so far has meant a great deal to so many people.

Live concert streams

Having all the live Rick Springfield concert streams available these past few days – both the Atlantic City show on his official Facebook page and others on fan pages – really helps with concert withdrawals.

Although I didn’t actually watch the videos live because I was out on a day trip with my family and watched them later that night, the whole concept still amazes me. To be able to sit at home and watch a live concert as it’s happening still blows my 13-year-old fangirl self’s mind. It makes it really clear how our lives have changed in the past few decades.

The live streams often offer a better view than you’d get if you had seats further back at the actual concert, which is fun, and you get to see little details that happen, such as a string breaking during “Jessie’s Girl” and RS improvising to get through the song. Seeing him perform live really emphasizes what an amazing performer he is.

On the live streams, you can also comment throughout and it’s fun to see where some people are watching it from – last night I saw comments from Singapore and Sydney among the posts.

The only downside watching from home is there’s no chance of getting any “Human Touch” or making eye contact or running into him after the show.

The idea of watching concerts live as they happen without being there is something that I would have never even dreamed about as a teen so who knows what technology will bring in the future. In case there are any techies reading this who know how to make things happen, here are some ideas:

1. Virtual concert – similar to virtual conference calls where you hold meetings with people anywhere in the world and it looks like you are sitting at the same table, how about virtual concerts? There’ll be a place you can log in and then there will be a big screen at the concert where you can see the performer and the performer can see you, just as he or she would see those in the room. This way people all over the world can see their favorite artist in person even if the tour doesn’t reach them. And then you can enjoy the real or imagined eye contact.

2. Virtual meet and greets – This technology already exists in some form, via Skype and Facetime-type programs, so why not extend it to Meet and Greets? Maybe a virtual hug, too?

Neither of these things can replace being at a live show of course, but it’s better than nothing. Thanks to RS Official and to other fans for sharing their concert experience!

The devil is in the details

Supernatural article TD (2)

The above article was posted yesterday about Rick Springfield’s upcoming role on “Supernatural.” The writing is fine, but there was one important thing missing: A caption to describe the photo. One line that says “Rick Springfield played a creepy doctor on ‘True Detective’ in 2015” or something to that effect. There is a photo credit at the end of the story that notes that the photo is courtesy of HBO, but I’m guessing few will make the connection that, “Wow, Rick Springfield looks horrible in this photo, what happened to him? Oh, the photo is courtesy of HBO so that must mean that he was in character in that photo.”

Sadly, people don’t often read the whole story, they just see the picture and make assumptions. And unfortunately, now that the Internet has made everyone a reporter, people assume those assumptions are true and over time they are transformed into “facts.” I’ve already seen some not very nice comments about the photo that shows that people assume that this is a current photo of RS rather than a look that took professional makeup artists a great amount of time to create.

I know this Rick Springfield advocacy may seem silly – because aren’t there more important things going on in the world? – but it’s really about the big picture (no pun intended). Misinformation is spread daily online and then people act upon this misinformation, and it often turns hateful and ugly.

There’s a saying that “the devil is in the details” and, in light of RS’s new role in “Supernatural,” it seems appropriate to include that message here.

Notes of nostalgia

Between adjusting to the back-to-school routine and some major changes at work, I totally missed the two-year anniversary of this blog.

Normally I would do recaps and reflections and yadda, yadda, yadda, but I’ve already done a few of those already (yes a few, even though it’s only been two years, since there’s the year-end recap and the anniversary recap).

So I’ll just type out a few notes of nostalgia and be done with it.

I remember so clearly that day at work two summers ago when I was checking the TV listings of our local PBS station to clarify information for our newspaper’s calendar. And then there at the bottom of the screen was a video promoting a recent interview with Rick Springfield. I knew I’d have to check that out, and did so a couple of evenings later. I was shocked to find out he had just released a novel and before that, an autobiography. Although I was a huge fan when I was younger and still cranked up “Jessie’s Girl” when it came on the radio, I hadn’t followed his career in years and had no idea what ever became of him.

I immediately put both books on hold at the local library and did some Googling to find out what he’d been up to. Watching YouTube interviews brought back so many memories that had long been buried, such as song lyrics and the way RS used to lick his lips during interviews.

After reading his documentary, “Late, Late at Night,” I recreated my reading experience by putting together a little blog with links to the videos illustrating some of the stories he told: Late, Late at Night Musical Journey. Next I started this blog, My Rick Springfield Crush, because I was so excited about rediscovering my favorite rock star, but nobody else in my real life was all that interested. I never imagined that two years later – and 212 posts later (this one is #213) I’d still be writing it. I had no idea there’d be so many new things to write about: two CDs (The “Stripped Down CD/DVD” and “Rocket Science”), two movies (“Ricki and the Flash” and “Traces”), TV shows (“True Detective” and “Supernatural”), as well as numerous interviews and concerts.  And even when I formally ended the blog about 20 posts ago, I still found myself coming back to write more.

The same week I saw that initial interview in July 2014, I learned that he would be in town for a concert a few days later, but unfortunately I wasn’t able to afford the tickets (and I also found out he’d been in town earlier in the year to promote “Magnificent Vibration” at a local bookstore. Obviously I was oblivious.) Nearly two years later, I was in the second row at the same venue and got a picture with him after the show. In between those two shows, I had seen him in concert five other times – briefly meeting him twice. I guess you might say I got a little hooked (Or you might say something else. Whatever).

Well, this post became a little more recap-y than I intended and I haven’t even written anything about RS has inspired me in other aspects of my life. Fortunately if anybody is interested, it’s already been covered in previous posts. You can even start back down in the August 2014 archives and read all the way back up to today if you want to. There are lots of good RS pictures and videos embedded along the way.

For anyone who is still reading (the current number of all-time views is 15,613, which means there are LOTS of people searching for information about Rick Springfield), thank you. 

Singin’ the blues

Although the title of this post would be fitting for how I feel about not having the means to go on the “Rick Springfield and Friends” fan getaway in the Bahamas this November, that’s not what this post is about.

No, it’s about an article that was on Billboard.com today that RS plans to work on a blues album next.

“I love slide guitar, and most people don’t know it because I don’t really play it onstage,” Springfield says. “I play [Hambone Willie Newbern’s] ‘Rollin’ and Tumblin” in my solo show, and I always get guys saying, ‘You should do a blues album.’ And I was thinking about writing something as opposed to just doing copies of blues songs that everybody’s done. I’m all for expanding people’s views, y’know?”


Here’s a video of “Rollin’ and Tumblin’ ” from the Stripped Down show I saw last year (it’s not my video – I found it on YouTube and the video it would be much blurrier if it was mine – but I was in the Fox Tucson Theatre  when it was being filmed and met him briefly after the show.)

When I first heard last year that he was working on a country album, I was a little wary, as I’ve never been a big fan of country music. But “Rocket Science” has become one of my favorite albums of all time.

Since I’m much more a fan of blues than I am country, today’s news is pretty exciting! I wouldn’t say I’m a blues aficionado, but I’ve been fortunate to see B.B. King, Buddy Guy, John Lee Hooker, Bo Diddley and Eric Clapton perform live. Plus, my husband is a big blues fan and RS playing the blues is his favorite part of the RS shows he’s seen so maybe he’ll be more eager to go to another one with me in the future.

The Billboard article also talks about the 35th anniversary of “Working Class Dog” (have you seen the collector’s-edition guitar that celebrates that anniversary? It’s really cool-looking and one lucky fan can get it at each show – along with a meet-and-greet – for a mere $2,500.) And of course the article also addresses his upcoming role as Lucifer on “Supernatural.”

And if a full-band tour, a solo tour, a new movie and a role on a popular TV show isn’t enough, apparently he’s headed to Germany next year with the Rock Meets Classic tour – where American rockers perform with a symphony orchestra. Also on the tour are members/former members of The Eagles, Toto, Uriah Heep and Magnum. The tour visits 15 German arenas from March 30 to April 18. RS is listed as a “very special guest.”

 

 

Birthday indulgence

Last year on this day was a big press day for “Ricki and the Flash” and I remember it well because I was at a hotel in Palm Springs so I got to watch all the RS interviews that were on that day since I wasn’t at work. Plus it was my birthday so it was a little treat in addition to my real-life celebration.

So, if you don’t mind  little birthday self-indulgence, let’s go back in time to past Aug. 6 news (tonight he’s doing a show at Twin River Casino in Lincoln, Rhode Island – hope everyone who goes has a great time!)

2015

Press for “Ricki and the Flash”

2014

Official announcement that RS would star in “Ricki and the Flash.” (See article here.)

2011

A concert in Oklahoma (read a review here.)

2009

Promoting “My Precious Little One”

2008

RS has the highest chart debut in over 20 years with “Venus in Overdrive.” His first CD of all new material in almost five years came in at No. 28 on the Billboard chart.

2007

A scene on “General Hospital.”

And now waaaaay back, to my 1982 diary:

20160806_154225.jpg

Update on Aug. 10: I found some clips from the Aug. 6, 2016 show (from somebody whose videos turned out WAY better than any I’ve taken. In fact, it is such an amazing RS concert recap video, I totally plan to watch it on my birthday again next year. Happy birthday to me.)

 

35 years after ‘Jessie’s Girl’ hit #1

Hey RS, remember that time a few months ago when we stayed in the same hotel?

You probably don’t remember because when I saw you, you were standing in the lobby and your back was toward me and with all the lobbies you’ve stood in, you can’t possibly remember everyone who walks behind you.

And even though I briefly saw most of the members of your band walking around the hotel during our visit, I never saw you again after the lobby – except during that night’s show of course.

And so because my husband is opposed to stalking – which in most cases is a good thing but not really in this case – we checked out of the hotel in the morning and headed home.

I couldn’t help but be a little disappointed on the way home because I had gotten a little spoiled by the chance encounters – albeit very brief ones, enough for a quick photo – after prior shows. So in the days that followed, I wrote a little song about it to get it out of my system.

On a whim a few weeks ago, I decided to submit a couple of my song/poems to a local literary magazine  – “In the lobby” being one of them – and they got accepted! The magazine is scheduled to come out in the fall.

So why am I writing about this here? 1. To say, hey thanks for not turning around in the lobby because that inspired a song and this is the first time I’ve had a song/poem published in a literary magazine since high school and 2. Because I found out about it exactly 35 years – minus one day – after “Jessie’s Girl” hit #1 on the Billboard chart (which was Aug. 1, 1981).

OK, I know there’s a big difference between an acceptance email from a local literacy magazine and a #1 song on the Billboard Hot 100 Chart, but whatever, I thought the timing was cool anyway since they were both inspired  (sort of) by similar experiences.