Strange things are afoot in the men's room at the Waldorf Astoria
In 1999 I was lucky enough to be invited by VH-1 to attend the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony for Bruce Springsteen, Paul McCartney and Billy Joel.¬† It is without doubt, the highlight of my 30 years in radio.
I was given total access to all things "Hall of Famey!"¬† The day before I was set up in a room with the 10 other radio folks from around the country who were there as well and I was granted access to a parade of rock stars who dropped by for interviews.¬† I talked to Julian Lennon about his father.¬† He shared with me sad stories of a father who was not there.¬† Bonnie Raitt and I chatted about her amazing career and influences.¬† I asked her who she would have induct her into the hall the next year.¬† She as very modest in stating that the day for her was probably still years away.¬† A little smile came to me when she was indeed inducted the next year... Just call me Nostra-dan-mus!¬† Wilson Pickett taught me how to say "Good God Y'All,¬† and Leslie West of Mountain asked me to¬†say hello to his girlfriend in Ft. Collins "on the radio" when I got back to Denver.¬†
I had the ultimate backstage pass.¬† Rehearsals were a blast to watch.¬† Imagine sitting in an empty theater watching Bruce and the E Street band, Billy Joel, John Fogerty and Bono rehearse the songs that they¬†would perform the night of the ceremony...amazing!
But my fondest memory of that quick weekend trip was an encounter with Bono, Bruce, and Peter Wolf of the J Geils Band in the Men's Room at the Waldorf Astoria in New York City.¬† There I was at the urinal doing my urinal duties...looking straight ahead like I always do.¬† I can't be distracted.¬† All of the sudden, a distinctly Irish voice wafts through the air saying "you better hurry up and pee mate... the "Boss" is waiting.¬† I looked to my left and it was Bono speaking to me.¬† He told me that Springsteen was standing behind me.¬† Well I turned around and Bruce gave me the N.O.A. (nod of acknowledgement)¬† I turned back around and and told Bono that Peter Wolf of the J Geils band was behind him and asked him if he wanted to race.¬† He said yes, I said go, he said I already am...well because of lost pee-time...I did not win the "Amazing Race" of 1999 in the men's room of the Waldorf Astoria.¬†
To be quite honest, I was a bit embarrassed by the whole episode as I left the water closet.¬† I couldn't help but wonder if I had handled it ¬†in a cool enough fashion befitting Bono and Bruce.¬† I wasn't that concerned about Peter Wolfe.¬† Later on the floor¬†I saw Bono and he too gave me a little nod and a smile.¬† So in the end, I was relieved...and RELIEVED!