A moment for David Bowie

In memory of David Bowie, here’s a video that the folks behind the Rick Springfield documentary “Affair of the Heart” posted today. It was filmed in 2010 and shows Rick and his band performing David Bowie’s hit song, “Suffragette City.”

(For my own little tribute to David Bowie, click here.)

RS fans: charity and documentary

Well, I now have one less thing to worry about – I don’t need to give any more thought about what to order if I won the dinner with Rick Springfield.

Yes, the Rick Springfield Birthday Charity Campaign has come to an end for this year, raising a total of $18,566. Great job to those fans who organized it (and thanks for the RS photograph and “Ricky and the Big Birthday Bash” guitar pic!)! The money benefited The Linda Blair Worldheart Foundation and Hoops for Life/Dr. Michael Edwards’ Pediatric Brain Tumor Research Program at Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital.

I actually didn’t spend very much time worrying about what to order for dinner (this was the grand prize), but I admit that it did cross my mind a few times, with worries about food getting stuck in my teeth and spilling his glass of wine. And judging from my past encounters with him, I doubt I’d even be able to speak in complete sentences in his presence. But attending a sound check (another grand prize) would have been very cool. Oh well.

Since he’s on a short break from his tour, there haven’t been any live-stream concerts to watch, but I did come across this great interview on YouTube: an uncut interview from The Daily Buzz from Oct. 3, 2011 – four years and five days ago – when he was helping to promote the “An Affair of the Heart” documentary about his relationship with his fans.  Since it’s the uncut version, it means that although the “Who is Jessie’s Girl?” question did come up, there was plenty of time for other questions, too.

How many other rock stars inspire their fans to raise money for charity in lieu of birthday gifts and make a documentary about them?

RS, is your left ear ringing?

There’s a superstition about your left ear ringing when somebody says something good about you and there’s also a superstition that your left ear burns when a woman is speaking of you. If both of those superstitions were true, RS would likely constantly have ringing, burning ears.

I remember watching an interview with RS that was filmed right after he watched the documentary about his fans “Affair of the Heart” (Or maybe it was actually part of the film, I can’t remember, I better watch it again.) and he said that he had no idea that his fans felt that way about him. He thought they came to the show, had a great time then left and that was that. He must have known that it wasn’t the case in the 1980s when his image was the first thing thousands of teenage girls saw in the morning when they woke up and the last thing they saw at night because his face was plastered all over their bedroom walls.

Maybe it was easier to ignore in the 1990s before social media’s debut but all he has to do is to search his name on Twitter and there’s all kind of chatter there (way too many references to “Jessie’s Girl,” methinks). Then of course there’s all the interviews he does in all the cities he performs in that are accessible online at all hours of the day (which generates shares and more conversation, both virtually and in person to whoever is in the room – apologies to my husband for all the RS conversations…) And if he were to sneak on to his Facebook fan pages, he’d likely be surprised by what he sees there. (Or maybe not, after all these years, he’s probably seen all kind of things.)

Anyway, FOUR MORE DAYS until the show. I was a little nervous when I saw the March 5 and March 6 concerts were cancelled but so far it looks like those “unforeseen scheduling conflicts” won’t affect Saturday’s show. Four more days…

A celebrity’s life

I wonder what RS thinks of his fans. He seems pretty accessible to them, with the meet-and-greets, sound checks and fan appreciation vacations. And he has said in interviews that he really appreciates them now even though he may not have as much in his younger days. And, as documented in the documentary “Affair of the Heart,” it definitely seems genuine.

But I wonder what it must be like to have that type of celebrity – to have the realization that if you’re having a bad day and snap at somebody, it will permanently cloud their judgment of you forever. And if your name comes up in a future conversation, they’re likely to say, “Oh yah, I met him once, what a jerk.” It’s not fair but it’s human nature, I guess, to have different expectations for celebrities, as if they should be infallible.

Whenever I’m at a sporting event (which isn’t very often), I’m always intrigued at the way people yell so freely at the players. “You idiot, didn’t you see the ball!?” “They should get rid of you!” “You suck!” I can’t help but wonder how these same individuals would like it if they had somebody following them around at work commenting on their every move. “You idiot, it’s not their, it’s they’re! I can’t believe you sent that email!”

And even on the other extreme: Imagine how tiresome it would be to arrive at your office each morning to be greeted by a crowd of people snapping pictures of you that will be posted all over the Internet in the next 10 minutes. Even if the swarm was filled with admiration, I’m sure there must be times when it becomes too much. I guess that may just be the “price” of celebrity that goes along with making millions of dollars for doing something you love.

flickr pic-fans

Rick Springfield performs in concert in Columbus, Ohio, on Sept. 5, 2012. Photo by Mike Morrow/Flickr

It must be strange to meet a person for the first time and have them know so many personal things about you when you know nothing about them. (I think a non-celebrity gets a little taste of this sometimes because we as a society now divulge so much personal information on social media that people who you hardly know but are “friends” with on Facebook know how you spent your summer vacation and if it comes up in conversation during a chance meeting at the supermarket it feels a little strange.)

Social media has changed the relationship of celebrities with their fans, too. (Here’s an interesting article on “super fandom.”) Not only does it allow for a direct line from a celebrity to his or her fans (and maybe the opposite direction, too), but also from fans to one another – such as on Facebook fan pages.

RS fans are a very devoted bunch. It’s very apparent from reading through Facebook posts and searching #rickspringfield on Twitter that he has many admirers. (I hear there are even blogs devoted to him…) Does it ever freak him out a little? I wonder if he ever reads through his fan pages to see what they’re saying and, if so, what he thinks about it.