The Rock Hall Inductions were held in Cleveland last weekend. Inductions are on a 3 city rotation- Cleveland, New York and LA. This is the only Hall of Fame in the country where inductions are not held where the museum is located! Why-- who know!!? Could you imagine if the baseball hall of fame inductions were not in Cooperstown, or the football inductions not in Canton? Cleveland put on a first class ceremony and it deserves to host this event every year.
My week actually started off the Saturday before by seeing former Righteous Brother Bill Medley. It was an entertaining show. Both he and his daughter said they would be signing items after the show at the merch table. I believe I was the only one who brought my own materials (lp and HOF poster), others bought the cd's they were selling. He was very friendly and happy to sign every item.
The next event was Green Day at the House of Blues. The 1,100 seat venue sold out in a matter of minutes and I was lucky to get a ticket. It was a great show and you can read my review at www.neomusicscene.com Yes, I just started writing for this site! Please check it out.
After the show, there were about 25 people hanging out, trying to meet the band. Mike and Billy Jo got in a van and headed in the other direction. My friend who shoots many shows there, knows one of the bouncers so we decided to talk to him for a bit. As we were talking to him, Tre Cool walks out with some friends and heads to the van right next to us. There were 3 fans and the bouncer and our one friend, who happens to be a good looking female, asked if Tre would sign- and he waves us over. She had 3 items and he said "Which one do you want me to sign, I'm only signing one". She went for the American Idiot vinyl and it turned out great. My friend had a photo and I had a Rolling Stone magazine. He looked at us and said "hey, I didn't say I would sign your sh**". He then grabbed by buddies photo and puts a scribble on it. Literally, it was a scribble, not one legible letter. I hand him my magazine, he takes it, then says "sorry man, I'm not signing", and proceeds to give it back to me. Tre is not so cool. Whatever.
The next day, I got the day off and head to the Rock Hall. They had a ribbon cutting ceremony for the new inductee exhibit. I had no idea they were doing this, luckily I brought my stuff. I was 2 feet from Tom Morello, but he was on a private tour so I didn't ask him to sign. Although I should have! Kicking myself for that one. I think he would have done it.
At the ribbon cutting, 3 guys from Double Trouble, Bill Withers, Steve Van Zandt, Darlene Love and Mark Naftalin from the Paul Butterfield Blues Band were on hand. After the ceremony, they whisked most of the guests out, but I did manage to get Bill Withers on my HOF poster. First one of the day.
That evening there was a VIP event at the HOF were some inductees and other celebrities attended. I had a Stevie Ray Vaughan and Double Trouble concert poster ready (I saw SRV and DT open up for Robert Plant back in '88). After they walked the red carpet, both Tommy Shannon and Chris Slayton came over and signed it! However, I did not see Reese Wayans. I also ended up getting Darlene Love on the HOF poster. Jimmy Vaughan left the event early and I went up to him and asked if he would sign a photo for me. He just shook his head no and kept walking. That was it for me that day.
Saturday I had a track meet so I did not get to Cleveland until 5:30 or so. Induction doors opened at 6:30 and the show started at 7:30, So I only had a little bit time to try to score some autographs. As I was approaching Public Hall, 3 guys from the Foo Fighters were standing outside the hotel smoking. I happened to bring my Sonic Session lp and ended up getting Pat Smear, Nate Mendel and Rami Jaffe the keyboard player. They were very cool and I actually had a great conversation with Pat about Van Halen (my phone case is like Eddie's Frankenstrat). I also got Mark Naftalin from Paul BBB on the HOF poster. Dave Grohl signed a couple on the way to the venue but that was about it.
I end up bringing my HOF poster in the venue but left my other lp's in my car. The show itself was incredible! Dave Grohl, Joan Jett, Tommy James and Miley Cyrus playing Crimson and Clover. Paul and Ringo playing the same stage as they did in 1964. Stevie Wonder and John Legend singing Lean on Me. Green Day rocking 3 songs. On and on... You MUST watch this show on HBO when it's on in May.
I leave the venue a little early and see Taylor Hawkins and Nate smoking in the hotel parking garage. I wasn't sure what to do-- stop and get a photo, or run to my car to get the lp. I end up getting to my car which was across the street, and of course by the time I got back, they were gone.
By this time, there is a huge crowd- people watching and some trying to get autographs. Paul McCartney comes out and actually comes over to the fans and signs about 4 autographs. But the crowd started pushing and shoving and a guy actually fell on top of Sir Paul. That was it, Paul headed into the hotel and was done signing for the weekend.
Nobody was signing after the show. We heard that Joan Jett was having a private party at the HOB so we decided to head over there. Our cute friend was already there when we arrived and she said that Joan and Alice Cooper had just left. A few minutes later up rolls 2 SUV's and Sir Paul and Steven Van Zant get out. Paul said not to bother, because he wasn't signing. Man, that was twice I was within 10 feet of a Beatle! Dave Grohl came out of the venue and a few others but no one signed. A little later, Gary Ryan- the original Blackheart bass player came out and signed for everyone.
At that point in the night, around 3:15 am, I was pretty worn out. I wanted my buddy to take me to my car so I could head home. He said wait 10 more minutes- he always says to wait 10 more minutes! This time it worked out as Beck meandered out by himself. He was awesome. I asked him to sign a photo and he did and he also took a picture with me and one with Robyn too.
All in all it was a great musical weekend. I was just too tired to head back to the hotel or airport on Sunday. I do have a real job and needed to rest up. That ended up being somewhat of a mistake as I later found out Green Day signed everything as did Fall Out Boy, Steve Cropper, Bill Withers, and the biggest one: Stevie Wonder! I guess he took pictures with everyone and signed for everyone too.
Oh well, if I went, I would not have been able to function. Sometimes your health is worth more than the autograph.... sometimes!