‘The Wall Will Fall’ earlier than anticipated

I forgot about the time difference so it was a thrilling surprise to see that “The Wall Will Fall” is already out before I go to sleep on May 7! I even found my keys earlier tonight in the closet with an extra roll of paper towels! (I’ve been looking for my keys for the past month). A good day indeed!

So without further ado, here is the video for “The Wall Will Fall”:

‘The Wall Will Fall’ on May 8

The first episode of “Rick Springfield & Vince DeGeneres Present the Mini Series: The 60-Second Guide to Songwriting with a Partner” was posted April 1 and now, after about five weeks of entertaining videos, the new song and video will make it’s way out into the world this Friday, May 8.

Here’s a look at the development of “The Wall Will Fall.” To watch the videos on Instagram, click on each episode number. The descriptions are provided to help navigate the episodes if you’re looking to watch a specific one, but I tried not to give any spoilers away (or comment on any misinformation that may be contained within that was provided in the name of comedic relief.)

Episode One

The concept of this mini-series, later called the “World’s Most Ultimate Greatest-Ever Not-so-Mini-Miniseries,” was that Vance DeGeneres and Rick Springfield would each get 30 seconds per video to work on the collaborative song. In this world premiere, Vance starts playing a few notes and then his timer rings. RS gets a little distracted with his guitar pics and shows us a guitar with his dog Bindi on it. Once he repeats what Vance played, his timer rings.

Not only does the series kick off on this day, but RS also announces that he will be holding Zoom happy hours every Sunday during the quarantine and fans are invited to send an email with their questions for a chance to be selected for the happy hour each week.

It’s a good day, especially in the midst of a pandemic.

Episode Two: The Red Scarf

The episode starts again with Vance and his dog. He plays a few more notes then runs out of time again. RS, wearing a long, red scarf, points out Vance’s guitar and feels like he he needs to step it up a bit by selecting a sparkly red guitar to play with.

Episode Three: The Drum Machine

The boys start to get a little competitive and Vance moves from in front of his bar to in front of some tall sparkly amps. RS has written the pre-chorus and makes some changes to the chords. Already at this point the song is getting catchy. RS pulls out his signed Les Paul guitar, tunes it, demonstrates his drum machine. On April 4, RS releases “No Human Touch.”

Episode Four: Signature Notes

The musical instrument competition continues and RS shows off his signed Paul McCartney bass and Vance tries to compete with some special “signed” pieces from his instrument collection, too.

Episode Five: A New Vision

RS tries to refocus on the song and moves to his Karma keyboard to take the song in a different direction. He introduces the “sing-along” idea for the end of the song, conveying a message that in the light of the coronavirus scenario that we’re all currently facing, we all have to take care of each other.

Episode Six: Subliminal Messages

Vance introduces the lyrics for the first verse. Richard Marx offers to help with the bridge. RS plays the pre-chorus. The boys reconcile their tiff and agree to focus on the song but each add subliminal messages in the video.

Episode Seven: Studio Tour

Vance shares lyrics for the chorus. The first special guest is announced – Vance’s sister Ellen asks whether RS is writing on a boat because of the nautical theme of the studio. We get a little tour of his Black Lagoon home studio and learn about his passion for “The Creature from the Black Lagoon” and for submarines. RS makes some changes to the chorus and it’s the first time we hear the words “The Wall Will Fall.”

Episode Eight: Sammy Hagar and HG Wells

Vance shares the lyrics for the second verse and admits to Sammy Hagar that his guitar signed by “John, Paul, Ringo and Greg” was forged. RS repeatedly listens to the confession and then points out that the HG Wells cut-out behind him was not fake, that it is actually the cut-out from the cover of The Beatles “Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band” album. Then he admits that he’s gotten away from the vibe of the song and redirects himself to playing the whole song up to this point. It’s sounding great!

Episode Nine: Rock On

This episode of the “songwriting extravaganza” starts with Vance sitting behind a drum kit and the talk focuses on drums, including RS sharing his findings after conducting historical and musical research. Features Paul Stanley of KISS.

Episode 10: The Bridge

Richard Marx saves the day with providing lyrics for the bridge as RS is recovering from a virtual happy hour.

Episode 11: A Masked Vistor from Planet Claire

Vance plays a short holiday song at the request of Fred Schneider from the B-52s. (Presumably – he’s wearing a mask so it’s hard to tell for sure.) RS shares a Father’s Day song and starts talking about the recording process.

Episode 12: Full Version of ”The Wall Will Fall’

Creed from “The Office” and The Grass Roots drops in to offer some advice. RS confesses that he’s run out of clean clothes. He shows a video of himself playing the finished song (with clothes on). SO good! Whoo-hoo! On April 18, RS releases “Glove Somebody.”

Episode 13: Bring Us all Together in the Face of the Plague

Vance dresses up and RS finds some clothes. Gregg Bissonette gets clarity about the vibe of the song so he can find the right drum beat.

Episode 14: Time to Record

It’s time to start recording the song! Matty Spindel, RS’s sound engineer, comes to the Black Lagoon to record RS playing guitar and keyboard and singing, doing what he does so well. Andy Cohen makes a video guest appearance.

Episode 15 Drum Day

Gregg Bissonette, who performs with Ringo Starr, tracks his drums via a Zoom session with RS and Matty and we get to hear some drum terminology. The song is really coming together!

Episode 16 All About the Bass (and dogs)

Each episode starts with Vance’s dog Taters, so this time RS brings Bindi to the session. Matt Bissonette, Gregg’s brother and Elton John’s bass player, also brings his dog, Buddy (whose bark was featured in the “Rocket Science” song “Miss Mayhem“), to the session.

Episode 17 Guitar Day

This episode features the amazing guitarist Tim Pierce, who used to tour with RS back in the 1980s and plays on additional projects (such as on “The Snake King.”) Tim also featured a behind-the-scenes look at “The Wall Will Fall” on his YouTube channel. We learn what RS likes to wear when he goes to Disneyland so now we know to be on the lookout for tall, thin guys in Indiana Jones hats once Disneyland reopens.

Episode 18 Time for Keyboards

We catch RS in a meditation session before he introduces Tim Gross, his current keyboardist. So nice to see him! Since RS fans saw so much of his current band back in those times when they were touring, it’s like seeing an old friend (an old friend who has no idea who you are). Hope they are all doing well.

Episode 19 Puppet Show and More Keyboards

Nearly a month into the series, and after many weeks of staying at home, the boys bring in some joke-telling puppets. Brett Tuggle, who toured with RS in the 1980s and many others since, adds more keyboards.

Episode 20 Slide Guitar

RS shares some history – or alternative history – about a variety of things. There is some real history here as well though. Tim Pierce and RS each play some slide guitar.

Episode 21 Sneak Preview of Video

Vance shares some sketches of the video for “The Wall Will Fall.” RS is not impressed. The recording of the song is finished! We hear an extremely short snippet of the song and learn that all the proceeds will be donated to Feeding America.

Episode 22 The Masked Man

Vance challenges RS with a video of a man wearing a mask and RS has to figure out what the man is saying.

Episode 23 Taking Calls

Vance and RS open the phone lines to take quesitons from callers.

Episode 24 Bar Chords, Ray-guns and Tootsie Pops

We learn that the song and video will be released on Friday, May 8. Screenwriter Alan Zweibel has some questions. RS answers questions about his ray-guns (they are to be used only on aliens) and how many licks it takes to get to the center of a Tootsie Pop. We also learn a little more about the video.

Episode 25 Grumpy Guy and the Silent H

Vance offers to trade RS a bottle of his Vance Vodka for a bottle of Beach Bar Rum. Alan Zweibel is back again, this time with crossed arms.

Episode 26 A 14,000-foot Pasta Noodle

Vance answers more questions, including another one from Alan Zweibel. Guy Fieri drops in to inquire what type of food their song would be.

Episode 27: The Day Before the Big Day

And now here we are, the day before the day “The Wall will Fall” is released. We’ve watched these videos for more than a month and they’ve brought so much joy to so many people. Everyone in the middle of a pandemic should be so lucky to have such a fun distraction each day.

Thank you to RS and Vance for the “Ultimate Miniseries: The Guide to Songwriting With a Partner!” Looking forward to hearing the song and seeing the video. Hopefully it will help feed lots of people!

UPDATE THE NEXT DAY

To keep all the episodes in one place, here’s the last one, which includes the video:

Episode 28: The Wall Will Fall

The big day! Vance pours a celebratory glass of his Vance Vodka and RS wears his celebratory glasses and takes a sip of Rick’s Risky Rye Whiskey. (Sounds like he may have been better off celebrating with Beach Bar Rum.) The video is awesome and the song reached #1 on iTunes the same day. Noise11.com published an article on many of the people featured in the video so if you’re playing that game, here’s the article: “Rick Springfield and his famous friends give ‘The Wall Will Fall” for charity.

UPDATE A FEW DAYS LATER

One more!

Episode 29: Epilogue

After RS and Vance take a little break, they may do another songwriting series!

‘The Wall Will Fall,’ ‘World on Fire’ and ‘Comic Book Heroes’

Although Rick Springfield fans are no longer getting their RS fixes in the pre-pandemic way (aka lots of concerts and videos posted by fans who attend those concerts), RS is providing plenty of entertainment in other ways.

In addition to the “No Human Touch” parody mentioned in the last post, there’s also the new “Glove Somebody” featuring a mix of old and current band members and two dogs.

There has also been seven versions of the instructional videos on how to play “Jessie’s Girl” in 60 seconds but despite his best efforts, we still don’t know. (So far his efforts have been sidelined by an “earthquake,” a “fire” and “technical difficulties.”)

The songwriting with a partner mini-series with Vance DeGeneres is having a bit more success though, as the song is really coming along nicely. Plus the videos are hilarious. The nice part is about being at home all the time is that I can stop everything to watch them as soon as I notice that they’re posted and they always make me laugh.

The videos have featured several guests and according to a new article on the Rock Cellar magazine website, the plan is to eventually release the song, currently called “The Wall Will Fall,” and donate any funds raised to a COVID-19 charity.

Can we spend a few minutes unpacking that new article? There’s so much good stuff in there!

  • The final edit of “World on Fire,” the sequel to “Magnificent Vibration,” is in progress and it’s “about a plague and how the Earth brings it to the people to try and save herself.” (He’s been working on it for three years and it’s going through its final edit when there’s an actual global plague. Pretty weird, especially when there are stories about how Los Angeles now has blue skies because there’s less pollution now that there’s not so much traffic and Venice canals are the cleanest they ever were, etc., which probably makes the Earth happy.)
  • More details on the HG Wells cutout from the Beatles Sgt. Pepper cover. (Which answers my question from a past blog post.)
  • He’s been working on acoustic guitar versions of “Comic Book Heroes” songs. He’s played a few on his fan club site, but I didn’t realize he was planning on playing all of them and will eventually do something more with them. Yay! “Comic Book Heroes” is my favorite of his older albums and I can’t wait to hear “Born Out of Time.” (My favorite on the album is “Believe in Me” and “Born Out of Time” is my second favorite and I remember my 12-year-old self feeling that way about RS because of our 20-year age difference. 😁)
  • The fact that he’s been playing a lot more piano these days. (For some pre-quarantine videos of this, see this post, “Sing us a song, piano man.”) Right after he mentions in the article that he’s been playing the piano a lot more these days, he mentions that his next album “is going to be quite different from the others.” Hmmm… He’s done rock, country-twinged, blues and symphony orchestra albums, will the next one be piano ballads?
  • On Saturday, April 25, he will perform in #AllTogetherNowLA, an online concert by Rock Cellar Productions, in association with @get2gethernow. The concert will be a relief effort to benefit L.A. residents impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. (Visit alltogethernowla.org for details.)

(He also performed last weekend at the Human to Human event.)

He sure knows how to brighten someone’s day!

Quarantine entertainment

Well, lots has changed since my last post on this blog. The world is completely different than it was a month ago. Any optimism and promise present at the beginning of 2020 has pretty much disappeared. As one Facebook post said, “Can we uninstall 2020 and install it again? This version has a virus.”

All that’s left to do at this point is deal with this new reality and adjust to it. Hope you all are in a safe place where you can stay home with loved ones and stay healthy.

Although the situation feels bleak, there are fortunately many people who are still committed to spreading love and joy. There are many stories of generosity and heroism and many examples of people continuing to share their light with the world. All of this is so appreciated and so needed right now.

If you follow Rick Springfield on Facebook or Twitter or Instagram, you may have seen what he’s been up to since so many of his shows have been cancelled. Fortunately he must be getting a little bored because he’s posted several humorous videos, including a remake of his hit song “Human Touch.”

He has also posted a series of videos that have a premise that he’s going to teach viewers how to play “Jessie’s Girl” but he gets a little distracted in each one.

These have been welcome breaks of joy in days of working at home while trying to monitor three kids who are in the midst of remote learning and I’m sure they bring joy to many others who are in much worse situations. (Plus it’s fun to see different rooms in his house.)

(Funny side note: There was a Facebook post on my newsfeed today that said that the song that was #1 on your 12th birthday is your quarantine song. “Jessie’s Girl” was the #1 song on my 12th birthday.)

He also had a Zoom chat with his buddy Richard Marx , who is hosting an online interview show, #socialdistancing, from his house.

But wait, there’s even more (and this is all in the past five days). There’s also a mini songwriting series with actor and comedian Vance DeGeneres. So far one has been posted, but it looks like there will be more.

Plus, a very exciting announcement was made today (and hopefully it’s not an April Fool’s joke): a Zoom Happy Half-Hour with Rick Springfield on Sunday! (Do you think it will involve some Beach Bar Rum?)

Tired of being stuck inside? Drinking alone or only with your significant other? Still talking with your significant other? Well, starting this Sunday you can have a drink and intimate chat with me and seven other RS-BFF’s. If you want to join in, just send your “I want in on this” email now to: RSHappyHour@gmail.com

Oh, and post your best questions in the comments here that you’d ask me at a happy hour and I might answer your question even if you don’t get in on this private chat! We will randomly select and invite seven fans who email to join me on a private Zoom chat this Sunday (and hopefully every Sunday until we’re out of quarantine). As soon as we’re done, we’ll post it online for everyone to view. Sound good? I’ll bring Bindi and you bring your special animal or your significant other!

See you then.

XOXO Rick

Definitely a bright spot in this quarantine! Stay healthy!

Zoot to reunite for Australia performances

Way back before “Jessie’s Girl,” “General Hospital” and even “Speak to the Sky,” there was Zoot.

As the Noise 11 site says, “As the 60s turned into the 70s, Zoot was one of Australia’s most popular Pop Rock bands.” After the band disbanded in 1971, each of its members went on to find more great success. If you read this blog, you likely know a great deal of what the band’s guitarist has been up to.

Other members were Beeb Birtles, who formed Mississippi then the Little River Band; Rick Brewer joined The Ferrets: and Darryl Cotton had several hits then hosted a TV show. The band reunited in 2011 on one of the Rick Springfield fan cruises, resulting in a live album and DVD. They hoped to continue performing together but sadly Darryl Cotton died the following year from liver cancer.

Now, for the first time in nearly 50 years, the band will perform a handful of gigs in Australia. Musician Russell Morris will fill in for Darryl Cotton. The show will not only include Zoot songs, but also songs that each of the individual members did after leaving the band (so Australian fans will be able to hear “Jessie’s Girl” live).

According to the Noise 11 article, the show will have three parts – “Zoot bubblegum” songs, an acoustic set and then heavier Zoot songs. (Check out the article for a lot of great videos and more information.)

The shows are Nov. 12-13 and Nov. 20-21, 2020.

Here’s a little message from RS about the tour (with an Australian accent…)


Update on the guitar auction

The online auction of guitars from Rick Springfield’s private collection is currently under way and ends Friday. Forbes even reported on it: “Rock star legend auctions his guitars to aid Australian wildlife” Below is RS’s reply to the reporter’s question about how precious the guitars are to him:

“Not as precious as the animals. They are favorites and I have quite a bit of history with some of them. I have used them in recordings, in performances.I have written countless songs on some of them. And I’ve never met a guitar I didn’t like. Wildlife Warriors are hands on and treating burned, orphaned and homeless animals that are all victims of the fires. I hope the guitars find good homes and raise some useful money for the Aussie animals.”  

– Rick Springfield, Forbes

More on wildfire fundraisers

I wore my koala bear “Souls to Save” shirt for the first time the other day and my 9-year-old son, who has never commented on my clothing before as far as I can remember, took a look at it and said “I love that shirt!” I told him the story behind it and he said he loved it even more (plus he loved how soft it is). Just thought I’d share that. (Note: The shirt is now sold out and, according to the merch site, they will not be getting any more in at this time.)

An animated plumber?

Voicing an animated character is nothing new for RS. He appeared in “Family Guy” and all the the way back to the 1970s, there was “Mission: Magic!” According to a recent social media post, he also lent his voice to an Australian plumber on an episode of “Duncanville.”

Hmmm. Weird. Someone said tonight’s episode of “Duncanville” on Fox might feature an Australian plumber who sounds just like me. Guess I’ll have to watch and find out. 😉

Rick

I haven’t had a chance to watch it yet, but it looks like you can watch it here.

There’s another addition to RS’s lengthy IMBD profile: “The Pitch,” a short listed as being in post-production. RS is listed as playing the character of “Barley” (he could have played the character listed as “Handsome Guy,” too.) The director of the short is Jackson White, the son of actress Katey Sagal and musician Jack White (RS’s drummer during the early 80s, among other times).

One more thing

RS had to miss the Eddie Money memorial celebration because he was sick and had to cancel a couple of shows. Hope he is feeling better now!

Guitars for sale

Rick Springfield has had many guitars in his life, coming a long way from his childhood when he used a backwards tennis racket and cardboard cutouts to “perform” in his living room.

In a 2012 Guitar World article, he talked about his vintage guitar collection, which includes the 1969 Gibson SG that he wrote “Jessie’s Girl” on – and later used four decades later in “Ricki and the Flash.”

That article included a partial list of RS’s guitar collection:

•’60s Framus Hollywood

• ’60s Hofner Galaxie

• ’60s Kay Red Devil

• ’65 Fender Mustang

• ’60s Maton Wedgetail (A vintage Aussie guitar)

• My original ’69 Gibson SG that I wrote “Jessie’s Girl” on

• ’74 Gibson Les Paul used on most of Working Class Dog

• ’61 Fender Strat

• ’49 Kay

• ’60s Airline I use for slide

• ’69 Ricky 12-string

• ’50s Gibson J-45

• ’60s Gibson ES-175

• ’60’s Hofner violin bass signed by Paul McCartney

• New Gibson Les Paul signed to me by Les Paul

• A Squire signed to me by my hero, Hank B. Marvin of The Shadows

• And maybe some other stuff!

His first guitar was a “$5 piece of crap from the local Woolworths,” according to a 2017 interview on extremeguitars.com. (In that article, he also shares the one thing that fans don’t know about him: “I’m a neatness freak around my own home but on the road my hotel rooms look like a homeless guy’s lived there for 6 months.” Now you know. )

For a gallery of some of the many guitars he’s performed with through the years, check out the Rick Springfield and Us website page “Guitar Picks.”

Why all this guitar talk?

RS recently announced that he will auction off a number of his guitars to benefit something also dear to him – Australian wildlife. From Feb. 21 to March 6, guitars from his personal collection will be auctioned to benefit Steve Irwin’s Wildlife Warriors.

Details about the auction, from the Heritage Auctions site:

Grammy-award winning singer, songwriter, actor and best-selling author Rick Springfield, has been moved by the tragic fires which have impacted his homeland to become an activist raising awareness and funds for Steve Irwin’s Wildlife Warriors of Australia. Wildlife Warriors is leading the charge to help rescue and rehabilitate the half a billion animals that have been impacted by the wild fires. The Wildlife Warriors mission is to take action to support conservation and defend our most threatened wild life species and natural habitats. This auction features stage and studio played guitars from the personal collection of Rick Springfield whose career includes 17 Top 40 hits, such as the #1 smash hit “Jessie’s Girl”, “Don’t Talk to Strangers”, “Love Somebody”, and “I’ve Done Everything For You”, along with thousands of live performances for millions of fans worldwide. Your bid matters to help raise funds for this worthy cause, so bid often and generously. To continue your support of the cause, we invite you to make a contribution directly to help raise funds.

Heritage Auctions

The site has pics and descriptions of each of the guitars if you want to learn more.

Here are a few tidbits:

  • Rick Springfield’s Circa 1960’s Framus Hollywood Solid Body Electric Guitar, NVSN. This is a single cut, 3-pickup, Hollywood model Framus guitar. Rick bought this guitar because it is the same model as the very first electric guitar he bought at age 15, “We couldn’t afford Gibsons or Fenders back then – Rick Springfield, Jan 2020. This guitar is German-made and all-original.
  • Rick Springfield’s 1993 Warmoth Strat Natural Solid Body Electric Guitar, NVSN. This is a Warmoth Strat-style guitar with an oil finish. Rick used this guitar extensively in the studio and in his writing room for demos and writing songs. He also used this guitar on stage when he began touring again in 1994.
  • Rick Springfield’s 1999 Gretsch White Falcon 6136 Semi-Hollow Body Electric Guitar, Serial # 999136-372. This is Rick Springfield’s pre-Fender Gretsch White Falcon in very nice condition. All-original with no repairs or excuses. Rick played this guitar for two years in the Las Vegas MGM Grand EFX show. This is also the only guitar he played on his cover album The Day After Yesterday as well as various other sessions. It has been hanging on Rick’s wall for the past five years. 
  • Rick Springfield’s 2004 Burns Marvin Fiesta Red Solid Body Electric Guitar, Serial # 0475. This is a rare, limited run Hank Marvin/The Shadows model Burns of London guitar. Featuring a scroll headstock and a Fiesta Red finish. Rick used this guitar on a couple of sessions but it has mostly been kept in its case. Rick also had this guitar hanging on his wall for a number of years.
  • Rick Springfield’s 2008 Stage Played Fender Telecaster Sunburst Solid Body Electric Guitar, Serial # MX8268308. This is Rick’s staged played Fender Telecaster that he used extensively on live shows for the past five years. This guitar is also featured in the main mat used for advertising Rick’s gigs for the past five years.This guitar has been played and loved by Rick and it shows!
  • Rick Springfield’s 2010 Martin D-41 Custom Sunburst Acoustic Guitar, Serial # 1419397. A beautiful Martin D-41 style custom guitar made for Norman’s Rare Guitars. Rick used this guitar on his Stripped Down solo show for five years. Exquisite body trim and rosette inlay on the sought after shade-top/sunburst Martin dreadnaught. This guitar shows moderate playwear in the form of pick/strumming scratches from Rick’s live performances.
  • Rick Springfield’s 2014 Gibson Les Paul Supreme Turquoise Semi-Hollow Body Electric Guitar, Serial # 140027611. Essentially new condition Gibson USA 120th Anniversary limited run Les Paul Supreme. This guitar was given to Rick by Gibson. He played it on stage in Nashville, TN. It has been resting in its case ever since that Nashville performance.
  • Rick Springfield’s 2018 Eastwood Airline Sea Foam Green Solid Body Electric Guitar, Serial # 0601226. An Eastwood Airline, aka the map guitar. Rick used this guitar exclusively in his studio and also on a couple of tracks in the Las Vegas MGM Grand EFX show. This guitar is Korean-made and features a beautiful finish, along the lines of a Sea Foam Green.

Source: Heritage Auctions

For more details – and to place a bid – visit Heritage Auctions/.

Getting into the spirit: The Beach Bar Rum business venture

Rick Springfield and Sammy Hagar have announced their next collaboration: Beach Bar Rum. People magazine announced the business venture last week (see article here.)

I don’t know why, but whenever I think of this new partnership, the song “Yo Ho (A Pirate’s Life for Me)” starts playing in my head (from the Pirates of the Caribbean ride at Disneyland). (Though I guess the first song to come to mind SHOULD be “I’ve Done Everything for You.” Oh well.)

“Sammy has had such amazing success in the spirit business and I’ve wanted to get into it for a while now. When this opportunity came along I thought it was a brilliant idea. … And I am an Ernest Hemingway fan so of course I drink rum. I’ve tried a bunch of them and the Beach Bar brand is a cut above all the ones I tried — smoother and sweeter.”

Rick Springfield in People magazine
Embed from Getty Images

The rockers are selling three kinds of rums: a classic white rum, a Kola Spiced rum and the Red Head Macadamia Nut rum. (That last one sounds especially good.)

They launched the collaboration on Jan. 23 at a ribbon-cutting ceremony recognizing the renovation and renaming of the Stratosphere hotel in Vegas – it’s now called the Strat (it’s fitting for a couple of rock guitarists to be present for launching that new name, right?) Star chef Guy Fieri, who was also there celebrating his birthday, collaborates with Hagar on Tequila brands so everyone was in good spirits.

Drink up me hearties, yo ho.

Raising funds for the animals

RS’s month hasn’t been all rock n’ roll and rum. In addition to the screening of the new documentary “Orchestrating my Life” and performance/fundraiser with the Santa Monica High School Orchestra on Jan. 25, and four shows (including one at Graceland), he and Richard Marx did a live-stream fundraiser in his home studio to benefit Australia Zoo Wildlife Warriors.

(Background thought on watching these videos – Is that the actual H.G, Wells cardboard cutout from the cover of the Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club album?! Knowing he collects Beatles memorabilia, it could be possible.)

He also made an appearance at the Recording Academy’s annual MusiCares gala this past week, but it was evident that his homeland wasn’t far from his mind during this interview with ET Canada: “Rick Springfield tears up while speaking about the Australia wildfires.”

He mentioned in the interview that the Souls to Save T-shirt Fundraising Drive for Australia, available on his merch site, has already raised $30,000! And he’s also selling some of his personal guitar collection to raise funds for Australia.

To tie this post all together, here is Rick Springfield wearing his Souls to Save T-shirt and singing Sammy Hagar’s song at Graceland.

A new documentary, a tribute concert and ‘The Song’

Out of nowhere last week came a surprise tweet with a poster about a movie premiere fundraiser. The movie? “Orchestrating My Life,” a documentary of Rick Springfield as he creates his rock-meets-orchestra album and tour featuring students from the Santa Monica High School Orchestra.

What?! How cool is that? Tickets start at $20 for general admission so all those Southern Cal fans have a great opportunity to see the film and the live performance by RS and the orchestra! Proceeds will benefit the school’s orchestras.

Other recent news is RS’s participation in a concert in tribute to Eddie Money on Feb. 20, a little over a year after Eddie Money’s death. Other artists will include Sammy Hagar, George Thorogood and John Waite. Proceeds will benefit MusiCares and the USC Eddie Money Cancer Research Fund. Another bonus for Southern Cal fans, as the concert will be in Beverly Hills.

As mentioned in the last post, he’s also been busy advocating for help in fighting the Australian fires, lending his voice to promoting awareness of how the fires are affecting the country’s wildlife.

The New Year also started with several shows – he’s already had two shows in Oklahoma and one in Louisiana, and tonight’s he’s rockin’ at Graceland in Memphis. There are a couple more later in the month, too, in Massachusetts and Connecticut. As usual, it looks like he has a full touring schedule this year, including Hawaii and Disney World Epcot, as well as his fan getaway in May in Cancun, Mexico. (Plus that whole summer tour with Chicago. Is he coming to your town? Check here. )

This weekend, he will also be on “The Song,” a new TV series that reveals stories behind hit songs. Can you guess what song will be featured?

Devastation in Australia

The recent news in Australia is so horrifying, it’s incomprehensible that a country is experiencing so much devastation.

According to recent reports, since September 2019, this season’s fire season have burned 24 million acres, killed at least 28 people, destroyed about 2,000 homes and may have killed half a billion animals. An estimated 8,000 koala bears have died from the fires, which is almost one-third of all koalas in New South Wales alone, which is their main habitat.

This is so heartbreaking.

As Rick Springfield is both a huge advocate for animals and from Australia, he is the perfect spokesperson to spread awareness of the fires. Today, he shared the following video with this message:

The images in this video may be disturbing to some, but this is our reality. It is our responsibility to heal the planet and help all its inhabitants, big and small. The damage these fires have caused will be felt long after the flames are gone. Native animals that are found nowhere else on the planet are now in great danger of disappearing forever. The Veterinarians and services treating all the burned animals need money to operate. Please help and give what you can. Love & Healing, Rick Donate: https://www.wires.org.au/donate/emerg…

Additionally, the Rick Springfield Merch site has announced a T-Shirt Fundraising Drive for Australia. The vintage jersey shirt is adorable, with a picture of a koala bear in Ron’s “Working Class Dog” attire. The text says “Souls to Save: Heal Australia.” The cost is $50. Here’s the text on the site:

Devastating wildfires in Rick’s native homeland of Australia have shaken the world, and what seems like an impossible number to conceive, over half a billion of the country’s animals are dead. While we try to wrap our heads around this incredible tragedy, Australia needs our help for the survivors. 100% of the proceeds of this shirt sale will be donated to WIRES Emergency Fund.

As I was writing this, I remembered the announced title of RS’s next novel, which now sounds so ironic: “World on Fire.” I wish what is happening in Australia was just a plot in a fictional novel rather than reality.

Another year gone by

Can you believe it’s time for another year-end wrap-up? It seems like just yesterday that RS was donning a cowboy hat and letting his hair go gray for a role that never came to be. But that was already a year ago!

Not only are we as the world wrapping up a year, we’re also wrapping up a decade. Bye to the teens and hello to the 20s. I don’t know why, but 2020 seems like it’s going to be a good year. Just the sound of it – 2020. That number seems to evoke clarity and wisdom (20/20 vision and 20/20 hindsight). Hopefully that will be the case. Wouldn’t it be great if we could learn from the past and not repeat the same stupid things over and over again?

Anyway, soon we say farewell to 2019 and welcome 2020.

Here’s a look at the past year, as it pertains to the subject of this blog.

As mentioned above, 2019 started with a cowboy hat and gray hair. He soon went back to dark brown, but not before the sophisticated and debonair cover photo for “Orchestrating My Life,” the CD release this year of Rick Springfield hits performed with a symphony orchestra.

January also included a performance at Graceland and the addition of “Jailhouse Rock” to the set list.

Orchestrating My Life” came out in April. This album brought “World Start Turning” to the set list which is such a beautiful song that I wasn’t familiar with back in the day.

In May, his parents’ former home in Australia was one of the stops on a public art bus tour that included a group of singers dressed like Ron on the cover of “Working Class Dog” and lots of bull terriers.

This year RS also continued speaking about depression, participating in the #MyYoungerSelf campaign for the Child Mind Institute. This was also a year where I was told that my youngest child potentially may have a tendency for depression so RS speaking out about it has been helpful for me on a personal level as well.

June was a nice RS month for me, as I got to see him in concert (#14) from the second row (“A spritz of happiness at Wild Horse Pass“) and heard “Souls” live for the first time I could remember. (It’s possible I heard it back way back when, but I don’t recall.)

This year brought a milestone birthday for the rock star – the big 7-0. (And my big 5-0). The fans behind the Rick Springfield Birthday Campaign did a great job celebrating and raised $34,170 for the Linda Blair Worldheart Foundation, which helps rescue dogs. (And I won a calendar of fantastic concert photos and an EFX prize packet – thank you to those who gave those prizes!)

Mr. Springthorpe also became an ordained minister so he could marry off his guitarist. (His youngest son also got married this year, but I’m not sure if he also officiated at that wedding.)

And here we are already in December, when him playing piano was added to the Stripped Down set list “Sing us a song, piano man“).

What’s coming in 2020? I can’t say for sure, but we’ve heard things in the works include a sequel to “Magnificent Vibration” and another novel and that he’s been working on more new songs. Plus there’s the fan trip in Cancun in May that was the postponed trip from November this year in Punta Cana and a summer tour with the band Chicago.

(In case there is anybody out there that has even an iota of interest, I’ve written lots of new songs this past year and even spent an afternoon in a recording studio, which was pretty exciting even if it wasn’t the Black Lagoon in Malibu.)

To go with the end-of-the-year theme, here’s the blog recap, as of 10 a.m. on Dec. 31: In 2019, there were 11,384 views from 7,165 visitors (All-time stats are 49,523 views by 29,641 visitors and this is post #403, the 34th post of 2019.)

Why do I include these numbers? Partly because they’re there and if somebody took the time to figure out how to measure them I thought I’d share since nobody else will so I don’t want to let that person’s efforts go to waste. And also partly in wonder because only one person read my ramblings in my high school notebook journals (me) so it’s kinda fun to know that there are people out there actually reading this.

Happy 2020! May it be a great year!