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Funny encounters with famous musicians

Discussion in 'Music to Your Ears' started by srblue5, Nov 28, 2020.

  1. srblue5

    srblue5 Tele-Meister

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    Got any good stories of funny/awkward times you met a famous musician?

    I've got a few.

    A few years ago, I was visiting NYC during the holiday season (visited Strawberry Fields for the first time on the anniversary of Lennon's death, but that's a story for another time) and decided to go to a jazz club near Broadway. There was a jazz singer named Hilary Kole performing a set there. I'd never heard her before but I fell in love with her voice. There was a moment when she sang "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas" where I swore she wiped a tear from her eye, and I felt it as much as she did. Long story short, after the set was over, somebody was selling merch near the stage and I decided to buy a CD to support her. Based on the sign, I wanted to buy the CD called "Self Portrait" (since it had a cover of "50 Ways To Leave Your Lover", IIRC). I asked the guy for the "Self Portrait" CD -- he looked puzzled and then gestured towards the backstage area and said something to the effect of, "Ask her for it when she comes out." Fair enough. After waiting 5 or so minutes, I figured she had left by the back door, so I grabbed my coat and began leaving, at which point I suddenly heard the merch guy yell, "HIM! Self portrait, self portrait!" I turned around and there was Ms. Kole walking towards me, saying, "Oh, you want a selfie?"

    I was kind of smitten, just a tad tipsy, and far, far too embarrassed to say, "No, thank you, I just want your CD, not a selfie." So, I got a selfie with her, chatted a little, and left the club without the CD. I bought it online later, so all's well that ends well?

    Some years ago, I was waiting for a long delayed flight in Chicago and my dad, a hardcore jazz fan, suddenly whispered to me, "Holy ****, there's Chick Corea". Indeed, it was Chick, sitting across from us (although I had a hard time telling at first -- I wasn't that familiar with him back then). He was nonchalantly eating a salad while my dad was internally freaking out. Finally, Chick stood up and started walking towards us -- we were sitting next to the garbage can. My dad jumped up and in one breath said something like, "Hi Chick, I'm a huge fan, it's a pleasure to meet you, let me throw that out for you." So he threw out Chick Corea's half (?) empty salad container and I took a picture of them together. We were supposed to be on the same flight and it got canceled literally one minute before boarding. I did later tell my dad, "It's a good thing he seemed to want to throw the container out and that he wasn't trying to save it for later, or else you'd have really ticked him off even more."

    Not really an actual musician encounter, but a couple of years ago, I was purchasing a Bill Frisell CD from a local jazz record store. A staff member who looked almost exactly like Bill Frisell walked out of the back room, saw the CD on the counter, and said, "Man, that's a great album." I wanted to be like, "Bill? Is that you, endorsing your own CDs?" :lol:
     
  2. mkdaws32

    mkdaws32 Friend of Leo's Gold Supporter

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    Buddy and I went to a Cult concert when we were in high school. Guns N’ Roses opened and we actually went to see them. When they were done, we listened to a couple of songs from the Cult and then went for a walk around behind the arena concession area, which was closed for the concert. In one of the walkways out to the upper stands, we saw Axl Rose and another guy watching the concert from the shadows. My buddy runs right up to him and gives him a friendly fist bump in the shoulder, and the other guy (apparently a bouncer) winds up to punch my buddy out, but Axl stops him. We had a great chat for a few minutes. This was mid 80s and, for the record, he was completely sober and very personable. I don’t know if we caught him on an exceptionally good night, but I walked away thinking “man, what a great guy”!
     
  3. Obsessed

    Obsessed Telefied Silver Supporter

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    I was attending a very modest, local pass-the-hat concert starring a pretty well known local cello maker. During a break I went into the bathroom to one of a line of urinals. Another did the same. As I turned around, I recognized it was Yo-Yo Ma. When I stay back down, I told my wife who found it rather unbelievable, but when Yo-Yo returned to his seat, my wife agreed and noticed he was wearing the most expensive loafers she had ever seen in our county.
     
  4. 3-Chord-Genius

    3-Chord-Genius Poster Extraordinaire

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    I've told this story here before, but it bears repeating because it erases any doubt that I am a jackass. I saw Marty Stuart perform at a Colorado Springs nightclub back in the mid-1990s. I didn't even know who he was. I got super drunk and people were in line getting his autograph after the concert. I went there with a napkin for him to sign, and while he was signing it I tried to start a drunken conversation with him, yelling at the top of my voice, slurring my speech, about his telecaster. I still remember the look he gave me - if looks could speak, this said, "you're loud, obnoxious, and you smell terrible. It's time for you to go away."
     
  5. Engine Swap

    Engine Swap Tele-Afflicted

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    A co-worker (who can be obnoxious) told me this story:

    He had gone to see Bonnie Prince Billy. After the show my co-worked went up to him and asked if he could sign his CD. BPB replied, "sure, I'd be glad to". He opened the CD and signed the inside cover.

    The next day, my co-worked looked inside and the inscription said: "I hate you so much".
     
  6. lammie200

    lammie200 Friend of Leo's

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    Back when I was in high school my friends and I went to a Springsteen concert and we waited outside around the back where the buses were parked to meet the band when the show was over. Springsteen was making the rounds and I shook his hand and said that it was a great show. He thanked me and moved on to shake more hands. He made it full circle and came back to me again. I don’t remember shaking his hand again but I told him it was a great show. He just looked me in the eye and said that he heard me the first time that I said it. Of course my friends wouldn’t let that lie on the way home. It was as if I killed their god.
     
  7. Cheap Trills

    Cheap Trills Tele-Holic Silver Supporter

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    I was piss drunk when I met Eric Gales. I kind of fanboyed a little too hard and he was looking at me like I had 3 heads. But Ladonna was there and was very sweet to me, we had a nice conversation (at least what I remember).

    I met Marcus King on his first trip to NYC right after his first record. I shook his hand and told him I think he's going to be great. I dont know if it was awkward because he's modest and shy, or because I was the first asian person he ever met.
     
  8. lammie200

    lammie200 Friend of Leo's

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    Back when I lived in NYC I spotted Paul Shaffer (i.e. David Letterman fame) about to get into a limo. He saw me seeing him but I must have had a puzzled look on my face because I couldn’t remember where I knew him from. He stood there for a good 10 seconds until it clicked in my head who he was. The puzzled look must have disappeared because he smiled and nodded his head and then hopped in the limo.
     
  9. Blues Twanger

    Blues Twanger Tele-Afflicted

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    I used to do crossword puzzles with Slim Dunlap. He was working the basement mailroom for a music company in Minneapolis and did crosswords to pass the time. I was in college and driving the local truck for them as well. He found out I had a knack for crosswords so always had a few clues that were stumping him for me when I arrived. Bonus is he's a damn nice guy.
     
  10. Leonardocoate

    Leonardocoate Tele-Meister

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    1977, Daytona Beach. I was on the men's tennis team of DBCC. The men's team had a house next to the girls team. This local guy started hanging out with us because he had the hots for one the girl players. He loved to brag about being close friends with Greg Allman. Naturally we called him on it. He said if you make him fried chicken he'll by. One day as I got back from classes one the girls said, "hey get over here and check this out". So I go into their house and there sits Greg eating fried chicken with all the girls standing around the table watching him eat. AWKWARD as hell! All I could think to say was, So Doug does know you, enjoy the chicken. Then I left...I'm sure he was every bit as fried as the chicken
     
  11. Stinger22

    Stinger22 Tele-Meister

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    Working a 3 day festival and it was late morning and acts still getting set up for the afternoon opening. Sitting there around the side of the stage in my golf cart with my partner and I look up see this guy who looks like Harpo Marx coming around the corner to backstage catering. I elbow my partner and say "Hey that's Elvin Bishop". So we go in grab of cup of coffee and walk over and sit down with him and had a great 30 minute or so conversation about what he was up to and his guitars, Gibson was just coming out with his signature. Great guy laid back just hanging around.
     
  12. Dismalhead

    Dismalhead Poster Extraordinaire

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    Went to see Gary Hoey at a small club in Fairfield, CA. I had seen him many years before and he had long, Weird Al type wavy hair at that time.

    So I go up to the guy selling the merchandise and buy a photo, and then ask him if there's any chance Gary would be around to sign it. He takes a few steps toward the back, looks down a hallway, then looks down at himself and says "Here he is". It was Gary selling his own stuff and I was an idiot and hadn't recognized him with short hair.

    He was a really nice guy about it. Thought it was funny like I did.
     
  13. Middleman

    Middleman Friend of Leo's

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    In college I was the head of the committee to hire bands for the university concerts. I ended up driving Heart to the airport the morning after their concert. Nice bunch.

    A few months later I picked up Leo Kotke from the airport and took him to the concert hall. He wanted to get a drink so we went to a bar. Within 5 minutes I lost him in the crowd. He is so unassuming. About 10 minutes later, I thought he had ditched me, I finally spotted him sitting at the end of the bar just chatting with the bartender. We traded a few jokes and I gave him the scoop on the local scene. Good guy and funny.

    From that job I also had lunch with Kevin Knudsen the drummer of the Doobie Brothers and Nicolette Larson who did the song "Gonna take a lot of Love".

    Lot's of other encounters with the Jackson brothers, not Michael however. Also right out college I was helping this gentleman pick out some database software for his fan base. When I heard the word "fan" I studied his face for a second and said, "Are you Chuck Berry?". He replied " All day long".

    On a business trip many years later I was staring out the window of SFO airport and felt someone bump my elbow. I turned to look and there was Neil Young standing next to me. I was so flabbergasted I couldn't think of thing to say.
     
  14. Junco Partner

    Junco Partner Tele-Meister

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    One of my buddies who grew up in NYC swears, when he and a bunch of his derelict friends were hanging out in a parking garage, smoking a joint or whatever, as teenagers, they ran into Rod Stewart. He was walking to his limo with a couple babes on his arms, they said some **** about being fans of his (not entirely untrue, these guys were wannabe mods and loved the Faces), he went into his limo and came back with a bottle of champagne, handed it to my buddy and told him “have a good time” before driving off, presumably to have a good time himself.
     
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  15. 24 track

    24 track Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    my bother in law helped a cooworker paint his cowworker's cousins house , the cousin was none other than John Candy , so afterwards John was talking to Gord (My BIL)
    and true to form Gord asked John for an autographed promo pic , John said sure , so he comes out with a picture pulls out a sharpie and writes "To Gord , thank you for painting my house..........now where's the 5 bucks you owe me?
     
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  16. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Telefied Ad Free Member

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    I've met a bunch because at shows I try to meet them, and prefer stars that don't have swat team security.
    Usually just try to have a casual respectful conversation, never ask for autographs or fawn like a buffoon!

    Gave Pete Seeger some fresh peas in the pod, gave Odetta a kiss on the cheek, sat for a drink with Steve Potts who played with Steve Lacy for years, talked with Bill Frisell on several occasions, Talked with Robert Quine a few times, worked with Quines ex band mate Ivan Julian, met some members of Sun Ra's band but not the biggest of them and not Mr Sun himself.
    One of the drummers with Sun Ra was hilariously delightful, similar to Animal on the muppets show, talked with him a bit and he was nice plus funny.
    Tried to meet Cecil Taylor but he was pretty rude, lived with his first drummer who he fired right after a Newport Jazz Festival.

    Brought a GF to see Billy Bang and we were the only customers, so he played right at our table, much to the horror of that GF who was not a fan of that music! That was pretty hilarious. Poor thing, we didn't last much longer. She was a RISD grad and they pride themselves in being artistically visionary and progressive. Ha! Billy is best live, can't listen to his albums but he rocks with Sun Ra, saw them several times. One of Sun Ra's sax players was an old old timer who taught Coltrane the harmonic range of the tenor. I did not get to meet that old feller and wouldn't have tried.

    Drug use did some damage and I'm not sure now who but I talked with a couple of members of the world sax quartet, some of whom played with Charlie Mingus' band. Met John Zorn who was pretty much an a$$. He hilariously drove scores of well dressed Harvard faculty & families out of Sanders Theater with his screeching, his and Quine and Frisell. Frisell was his usual shy antisocial and Quine was just always bitter and pained.

    As far as funny?
    I usually left laughing!
     
  17. gimmeatele

    gimmeatele Tele-Afflicted

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    I worked at my local club which hosted most of the punk bands during the late 70's early 80's and met many of the bands who made punk great, some were cool others real idiots. I shared a plate of chips (fries) with captain sensible of the Damned while talking about my day job, which was surreal.
    The best was Roy Wood of Wizzard, the Move ELO fame, who was on tour with his own band, the helicopters. After loading in and sound checking, Roy asked where can we get a drink the, so off around the local pubs we went for a couple of hours. Again really down to earth and a ton of stories to tell, always good to meet someone who sees his music as a job and has no pretence ov being a 'star'

    More recently I spoke to Popa Chubby at a meet and greet after a show and while was doing the usually shake hands, sign CD, have a few words, I rocked up to the table having just had surgery on my knee, PC had just had both his done not long before and I spent a weird ten minutes talking knee surgery with one oh my heroes of guitar, not one mention of music!
     
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  18. Fuelish

    Fuelish Tele-Holic

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    Saw a show by The Dickies at Emerald City in Cherry Hill NJ years ago, ran into the singer and guitarist in the lobby after the show, was wearing a Howdy Doody long sleeve tee... one of them wanted my shirt like really badly, so they offered me a tour shirt and I drunkenly agreed, and took off my shirt then and there, traded, and donned the Dickies tour shirt, not realizing at the time that the logo was a lil awkward...but a female friend later found it humorous so I gave her the tour shirt... wish I had either shirt, now. Looked something along these lines, perhaps with the year of the tour. upload_2020-11-29_2-19-14.jpeg
     
  19. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Telefied Ad Free Member

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    I worked on a house for a whole summer, replacing rotted window sills and frames from staging.
    It was a few doors down from YoYos house and I always looked at passer by's hopefully, but never saw him.

    Or is it passer's by?
     
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  20. Burning Fingers

    Burning Fingers Tele-Meister

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    A long time ago when I was 19, I was dragged along to Festival Hall in Melbourne by the bass player from Chuck Berry's support act.
    I ate a fair sized chunk of hash on the trip to the city and was put on the side of the stage leaning on the back-line amps..I watched the support act while feeling a little stoned but by the time Chuck came on I was as bent as a chop.
    Here he was doing his duck walk and now and again turning to me and poking his tongue out at me so I responded by poking faces at him.
    After the show he came up to me laughing and said " I got you there boy...no one could see me poking my tongue out but they all saw you making stupid faces "...yep he got me a good one.:p:p:p
     
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