This year’s campaign was in memory of his mom, Eileen Springthorpe, who died on Dec. 21, 2016, and raised $17,068.68 to benefit Linda Blair’s Worldheart Foundation, an organization that helps rescue dogs. (Notice the double 68s? That’s relevant since this campaign celebrates RS’s 68th birthday.) The campaign ran Aug. 1-Sept. 15.
Although the campaign is completely run by fans – who design the website, coordinate the donations and donate prizes – RS chose the foundation as the beneficiary. As his fans know, he is an avid dog lover, as was his mom. Helping so many dogs is such a nice tribute to her and I’m sure she would have been so proud to know all the good work being done in her son’s name.
According to the campaign website, happybirthdayrick.com, the birthday campaign started in 2007 and with the addition of this year’s funds, the total raised through all the campaigns is $107,290.83. This year’s total is the second largest amount raised. In 2015, the campaign raised $18,666. Last year’s campaign was $8,767.
Past charities have included American Gold Star Mothers, a veterans service organization for mothers who have lost sons or daughters who died while serving in the military; Hoops for Life, a research program for pediatric brain tumors; and charities helping with Haiti earthquake relief efforts. In past campaigns, some funds have also gone to helping individuals with terminal illnesses, such as Ruben, who worked as RS’s guitar tech.
A talented fan designed a bubble-wrap jacket, complete with “Fragile” labels, and presented it to Rick Springfield during a show this past weekend (see this past post for background). Hilarious! And fortunately somebody posted a video:
“Somebody call security, Rick Springfield is coming back.”
That was the opening line of an item in the paper announcing Rick Springfield’s concert at Celebrity Theatre in Phoenix 18 years ago tonight. That was my second RS concert that year – I saw him in Vegas that summer and met him for the first time at a “Karma” CD signing in Los Angeles that April. (Thanks, rickspringfield.us site for posting the notice.)
Here’s an interview from earlier that year on the “Donny & Marie” show. It includes a look at his bare right bicep, on which he recently had surgery (the cause of his recent guitar-less shows).
He doesn’t have a show scheduled for tonight (if there was, I was thinking of posting a video from that year and this year, but I couldn’t find one from 1999), but here’s a fun video of “Don’t Talk to Strangers” from last night’s show. It especially cracks me up because my kids often point out RS’s bad language.
There were also some great videos of this weekend’s shows posted live on Facebook, both on RS’s Facebook page and other places. Despite not being able to play guitar for now, he still ROCKS and entertains (and now his doctor has proof that RS is listening to his instructions…)
Despite doctor’s orders regarding his torn tendon, apparently RS played guitar at his last show.
Cue that teenybopper/mother hen syndrome I mentioned in a previous post: Yay, he’s playing guitar again, he looks so cool with that guitar, I’m so glad to see he’s playing it again. Wait, what about the doctor’s orders not to play? He better be careful. (And then there’s that self-centered teen-like response – he has to heal so he can play guitar at MY show in October…)
As if it’s even my business AT ALL what he does. But still.
Anyway, from the videos I saw of him NOT playing guitar – when his arm was in a sling – it looked like it was very difficult for him to perform without it. He sure played a mean tambourine though, smacking it to the beat against the mic stand. I also saw a clip from a song where he played tambourine AND harmonica – so both hands were busy.
But fortunately, RS is not one to give up. He may have made a great chicken farmer (circa 1979 when he lived in “the Burbs: Glendale, California” with chickens in his backyard, according to his autobiography) or a fabulous stained glass artist (aka the story behind his song “Jessie’s Girl”), but he refused to give up his dream to be a successful musician.
So here he is, at age 68, still making music (what lucky fans we are) and despite the periods of time his dream got diverted, he’s still going strong. Doctor’s orders or not (but, please be careful)! So inspiring to those of us who may be going through challenging times of our own.
(Oh, and a shout-out to his band for carrying him through this time, especially George who is playing the guitar during the acoustic shows. You guys are great!)
I assume there hasn’t been any official study on the number of times Rick Springfield appears in dreams each week, but I’ll bet he makes several appearances.
Last night, I got to spend a few minutes with him in my dream. We spoke for a few minutes, although I don’t remember the details, and he drew me a picture and wrote me a little note. I also got the scoop on a new upcoming role. According to my dream, his next role will be as the Cheetos cheetah (I looked it up after I woke up and the name of the Cheetos mascot is Chester Cheetah, in case you were wondering.).
Besides the fact that they both wear high-top tennis shoes and sunglasses, I’m not really sure where that came from, but sometimes you just can’t explain dreams.
NOTE: The material in this blog post came from a dream and is NOT based in reality. There has been NO indication at all that RS will indeed be reprising the role of Chester Cheetah and it is highly unlikely.
I’m not sure if this is something that happens to longtime fans of other rock stars, but I’ve noticed that I’ve been experiencing what I’ll call the teenybopper/mother hen syndrome.
I’ve noticed it emerging in the past, such as when RS continues his shows when he has the flu or when he sits on stage chugging cough syrup to get through the evening. But it was evident again this past week after he performed right after his surgery for a torn tendon.
Here’s an example of the internal dialogue:
Yay, people are live streaming videos from tonight’s concert! Those fans are lucky and I feel bad for the fans of the two Canadian shows that got cancelled, but it’s good that he took time to heal. Ooh, he’s wearing a red shirt, he looks so good in red. Poor thing, with his arm in his sling and not being able to play guitar. But it’s good that he’s following his doctor’s orders and not playing guitar while his arm heals. He’s so cute, but he really shouldn’t be holding his microphone in that hand or swinging his arm around that hard, it’s probably going to cause more pain later. Why is he jumping up and down, what about his twisted ankle? Is he really going into the crowd for “Human Touch?” Those fans better be careful not to hurt his cracked rib. I wish I was there to get a human touch.
I think this syndrome may be deeply rooted in a longtime fan’s psyche and is caused by the initial stage of fandom when a teenager, combined with now being a mother. (It wasn’t until recently that I realized that he’s only a few years younger than my parents – in those years decades ago when his posters filled my teenage bedroom walls, I don’t think that occurred to me at all.) It’s pretty cool when you think about it, how he was the first crush of so many of the women who are in today’s audiences. And although we look much different than we did at those shows in the 1980s, that part of us inside still shines through at RS shows in 2017.
But enough of that, here are some of the red shirt videos from the Sept. 1 Vancouver show (The words on his sling say “I know what you want,” a phrase that has also been on guitar pics at recent shows so likely a song off the upcoming “The Snake King.”) Wishing RS a speedy recovery! (Be careful out there, RS. Get some rest and listen to your doctor.)