but in Nashville, do you get to meet TOMMY ROE and query JEB BUSH on the same day?
A momentary digression (stay with me): SCOTT
BORCHETTA appears in the
GLEN CAMPBELL documentary I'll Be Me so when, a couple of days after
viewing the movie, I was greeted by MIKE
BORCHETTA (who remembered me even though I probably haven't seen
him in three decades) upon my arrival at BMI, after first remarking on how proud Mike must
be at his son's success, I had to ask Mike if he had been at the
premiere or had otherwise seen the Campbell movie (Scott mentions
his dad in the movie)?
Mike told me that he was at the premiere and, as much as he enjoyed
seeing Scott's on-camera remarks, he was slightly disappointed about
something else: Mike tells me he, too, was interviewed for the
film but, unlike Scott, "my part got left on the cutting room floor."
I think Mike felt better when I speculated that the questions posed to
Borchetta were probably confined to a certain subject and there may
have been a determination, once filming was complete, that there might
have been issues of pacing, flow and/or continuity, that weren't
apparent to the filmmakers at the time they took Mike's time.
The occasion of Mike and I reuniting on the morning of October 28, 2014
was Tommy's receiving BMI certifications for two million plays for his
hits, Sheila (which Tommy wrote) and Dizzy. (Tommy co-wrote Dizzy with FREDDY WELLER, his co-writer on Jam Up and Jelly Tight, Jack and Jill and Heather Honey.)
In an exclusive interview, Tommy told me that he has been writing a
memoir. Note to Roe's ghostwriter: Ask Tommy what, if
anything, he remembers about playing the WDGY (Wonderful
Wee-gee) Radio-sponsored Minneapolis
Adequatennial Music Spectacular at Parade Stadium on July 19, 1963. Hint: the
package show also featured RAY STEVENS, LITTLE PEGGY MARCH and MIKE CLIFFORD.
After bidding Tommy adieu and taking care of some other business, I was
off to a decidedly non-musical event, preceded by a reception, at the Blair School of Music.
Dubbed "A Conversation with JEB BUSH," as well as a "discussion," the audience
on hand, discovered it wasn't really a conversation nor a
discussion. What it was was a great opportunity for an potential
presidential candidate to test the political waters. While each
attendee was encouraged to question Bush, the format resulted in only a
couple of audience questions being entertained. While I had two
questions, one more relevant to Jeb's participation in the event,
I knew that question wouldn't interest Report readers.
Lucky for us, Jeb picked the softball question: Do you have a favorite
country song or artist?
Bush's response? "I don't know if he's considered country or not,
but he's a friend of mine: MICHAEL W. SMITH. He's kind of country..."
Have you seen the GLEN CAMPBELL documentary I'll Be Me?
I received two invitations to see this important narrative, one for the
Nashville premiere and another, due to a succession of miscues, I
thought was for the same event but was actually for another
showing. (The latter, four tickets, allowed me to share the
experience I thought would be marred by the off-screen sparring of the
blended family Campbell will be leaving behind.)
While the focus of movie, when it is not Glen himself, is as much his
wife, KIM as anyone, Glen's daughter, DEBBIE (who, when it comes to sharing book
royalties with a ghostwriter is either exceedingly generous or rather
clueless) who I thought might not appear in the movie at all, appears
briefly. Glen's other (living) children are mentioned but, of
those who appear, clearly Campbell's children by Kim get the most
screen time; screen time also devoted to glimpses of Glen's late
parents, his siblings, cameos by other artists with whom Glen has
worked, non-family band members and non-performing music industry
for HOLLY WOOD! HOLLY ODELL is a multi-talented musician (fiddle,
mandolin, rhythm guitar and viola) and one heckuva singer!
Like me, Holly has been around forever and knows where all the bodies
are buried. Like me, Holly can entertain you with JOHN HARTFORD stories (hers are better
and larger in number than mine).
That's where the comparisons end, as I found when Holly and I recently
met and she was kind enough to give me a copy of her latest album,
released in 2013, Odell's Hartford-inspired CD, titled Holly Wood Down on the River.
Holly's rendition of Big Rock Candy
Mountain will make you forget every other cover you've ever
If you've ever
wondered why STEVE MARTIN calls his publicity
firm Nasty Little Man, wonder no
more: In early June
2010 when I learned that Sir PAUL
McCARTNEY would be returning
to Nashville July
26th for his first solo performance I submitted a written request to STUART BELL for a media
credential to cover Paul's
performance (after being told there would be no press conference but
all likelihood, a written request would result in my receiving
tickets for the show.)
At some point I was referred to Steve Martin. Receiving no
response, the morning of the performance a check confirmed that I was
the comp list. No explanation was given by the "will call"
employee spoke with other than that I should not feel "slighted."
At that point I emailed Bell, copying Martin "While I appreciate that
there were a fair number of requests for... credentials, I find it
believe that, given the seating capacity of Bridgestone Arena, requests from key
Nashville-based international news
organizations... would not be accommodated.
"As you know, Sir Paul fired a publicist not too long ago for
representation, so I don't know why his current representatives seem to
"Please do not misunderstand: I understand that it is within the
realm of possibility that however it was decided to prioritize media
that I did not make the cut.
"As a former publicist who had to make similar decisions, though, I
took the time, not only to acknowledge the request, but to express my
that I could not accommodate. Not the slightest effort to do
made in this instance. This lapse of judgment/common courtesy is
"By extension, this reflects on Sir Paul, unfair though it may be, as I
sure that is not the sort of publicity he is seeking in connection with
When I did not receive a response after what I thought was a reasonable
of time I sent a reminder. Only after it became a moot point
late to honor my request) did I receive a response, from Steve (with a
Bell), reading "I apologize but this is the first I've heard of
this. In the future, please contact me directly with such
requests and I,
or a member of my staff, will get back to you..."
Less than an hour later, Martin responded: "Ms. Harris, I apologize but
this is the first I've heard of this. In the future, please
directly with such requests "
Great, I thought. Fat chance McCartney will return.
behold, seniors (continue to) rock and Nashville was one of the stops
on Sir Paul's 2014 tour.
So, in April I emailed Steve, indicating that "It's hard to believe
that nearly four years have past since we've been in touch, but since
learning that Sir Paul McCartney is returning to Nashville (see your
message to me below) and as I wasn't able to cover his performance in
Bonnaroo, I would like for you to consider this note as my request for
media credentials for the June 25th Nashville concert..."
it. No response.
months later, on June 5, 2014 I emailed Steve a polite "Second Request."
By late June,
2014 it was announced (though I did not receive direct word) that
McCartney was resuming the tour and that he would be returning to
Nashville's Bridgestone Arena on October 16, 2014.
On June 30,
2014, having not heard from Steve, I emailed him again, this time with
the subject line "October 16th Works For Me!"
maintained his silence until the morning of October 16th when I finally
got his attention with copies of the aforementioned
"Dear Steve. I am at a loss. I thought it would be Sir
Paul's performance I would be reviewing (see attached.)
"Do you think
the attachments would make a better story?"
minutes later, Steve replied with four words: "There is nothing
explanation, let alone another apology. No request to resend the
By now it
should be evident that I copied myself on all emails sent to Martin
including one resent 25 minutes later with the attachments Steve
claimed never to have received.
came and went without much local coverage.
As always, if
Steve feels I have not fairly represented him, he can consider this
Report his forum for a rebuttal.
it RAY STEVENS' or my fellow Minneapolitan LARRY VERNE's whose music my fellow author JOE QUEENAN doesn't particularly enjoy?
In a chapter titled Tools of Satan,
Liverpool Division, from PENELOPE ROWLANDS' new paperback, THE BEATLES Are Here!: 50 Years After the Band Arrived
in America, Writers, Musicians, and Other Fans Remember, essayist
Queenan refers to the Fab Four's music as being refreshing in stark
contrast to Mr. Custer which Joe calls "stultifying."
don't know if he has or is seeking endorsements and/or participation
from TIM McGRAW and DIERKS BENTLEY (whose names are used in his studio
advertising) but DALE
GUTHERIE is bringing Country Fan Jam to the Tennessee State
Fairgrounds June 11-14, 2015. For a $25 one-day ticket or
$100 for a four-day pass, fans are told to anticipate a lineup of "over
Commitments have yet to be announced, but bands interested in being a
part of this inaugural festival showcase can find more information here.