Ever meet someone famous but not realize it until later?

Discussion in 'THE Gretsch Discussion Forum' started by GreTschocaster, Sep 5, 2020.

  1. fredberry

    fredberry Electromatic

    28
    Jan 17, 2017
    Los Angeles
    The attached image was posted on Fred Berry Jr.'s (son of Rerun) web site shortly after our trip to the Academy. Fred Berry's widow, Carol, requested a picture which I sent along with the note "Have fun with this!" referring to the caption on my wife's photo as being 'Mrs. Fred Berry'. Now you know the reference to Rerun in my signature above.

    Having trouble posting picture. Will post it when I have figured out how to display .pdf in posting.
     
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2020
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  2. Fredo

    Fredo Synchromatic

    703
    Jan 18, 2010
    Georgia, USA
    My sister used to sell antique quilts at Black Angus, near Reading, Pennsylvania. It's not too far from New York City. Prescilla Presley walked by once, uninterested. Anyway a customer paid with a check one day and asked my sister if she wanted to see his i.d. She said, "No. If it bounces, it bounces." As soon as he left someone told her he was Harry Connick Junior.
     
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  3. Fredo

    Fredo Synchromatic

    703
    Jan 18, 2010
    Georgia, USA
    I knew who he was but this is a story worth telling. When I was a teenager, I had a friend who unfortunately had terminal cancer. Consequently, we wound up on the field before a Phillies game. The person orchestrating all of this said, "Who do you want to meet?" "Larry Bowa." So we met Larry Bowa. "Mike Schmidt." "No. You don't want to meet Mike Schmidt." "Pete Rose." "Pete, this is Frank and this is Frank." "You two brothers?" But, he was super nice and he nearly crushed my hand when he shook it. His hand felt like a vice. Pete Rose was at the peak of his career, on this tremendous hitting streak, and he got more hits that night. Vets Stadium went wild.
     
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  4. thunder58

    thunder58 Super Moderator Staff Member

    Age:
    61
    Dec 23, 2010
    tappan ny
    Admin Post
    I use to visit that area often many many years ago . Beautiful part of the country
     
  5. TeleRooo

    TeleRooo Electromatic

    9
    Mar 19, 2017
    Tiger Mt.
    The owner, I just can't remember his name, of a little musical instrument store called the Magic Flute, just off of Mercer St. & 5th Ave in Seattle in the late 70's, who was one of the guitar players for Kay Kyser And His Orchestra. I used to go in there all the time looking for older, cheaper, guitars. One day he introduces me to another older gentleman named Joe. We talked about jazz and swing music for quite a while. Really nice gent. A couple of months later when I asked the owner about Joe he said, oh, that's violinist Joe Venuti. He's in Seattle getting treatment for his cancer.
     
  6. Parttime

    Parttime Gretschie

    483
    Dec 6, 2018
    Texas
    I held the door open for a couple entering an Italian restaurant on music row in Nashville Tennessee as I was leaving. Didn’t realize til the record executive I was with told me in the parking lot that was Hank Williams Jr.
    I expected him to be taller.
     
  7. dlew919

    dlew919 Synchromatic

    752
    Jul 18, 2016
    Sydney, Australia
    I was working at an Australian tv station, and during afternoon tea, I’m at the cafeteria. Now I’d met a lot of people, and spoken to people in the line, some of whom were well known actors. All very nice.
    One day, chatting to a guy, who looks really familiar. I think must be a manager. Nice fellow. But not helping my leading questions ‘how’s work?' 'Bet they keep you busy?, he replied, nicely, but not terribly expansively. I was just about to try the 'and how’s the kids' when it hit me. It was Australian tv legend John waters. Now he was among very many other things, one of my favourite hosts on play school when I was a child. I nearly blurt out 'oh my god! I loved you on play school'. Fortunately I didn’t. Knowing now who he was, I went to more neutral conversation 'nice westher'. And he eventually got his coffee and walked off.

    nice guy and it was pretty cool.
     
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  8. flip

    flip Electromatic

    65
    Jun 22, 2020
    Manchester UK
    It's an interesting thread I hope my mainly non-music offerings are acceptable.

    I used to work for BOAC in the USA. I was travelling on duty back to Manchester from New York and a pal who was Duty Officer at JFK upgraded me to First Class - no Club etc in those days. Across the aisle from me was Bing Crosby travelling to Prestwick in Scotland with two lad I took to be his grandsons, no doubt to play golf. The cabin was otherwise empty but I observed the company's 'no intrusion' rule until shortly before we landed at Prestwick. I ran a children's music group in the village where I lived at the time and explained this quickly to Bing who inscribed on the inflight menu 'To Norley Young Music Group, I hope I can hear you sing sometime' and his signature. I was walking on air and that afternoon went to see a friend, two of whose daughters were in the group. I'd shown my friend when one of the girls walked into the kitchen and her father said 'Look what Mr Howells has got.' She read the inscription and asked, 'Who's Bing Crosby?' Ouch!

    I lived in Chicago from 1969-72 and recall seeing the then President Nixon being driven at very high speed in a blur of blue lights and black cars along Michigan Avenue past the junction with Monroe where our office was. His was a tiny face low in the back of a long limo. It was over in a flash. In contrast, a couple of years later my wife and I had done a job near Heathrow one Saturday evening and before driving home to Manchester decided to take a Sunday morning walk in the grounds of Windsor Castle – I think it's still possible but who knows? There were a few others walking like us and as we strolled towards the castle on The Long Walk I noticed a dark-coloured car emerge from the gate in the distance and drive towards us. It's a long straight drive of maybe a mile or more crossed by a public road. As the car neared us we noticed it was a dark green Jaguar sedan and as we paused at the side of the road it drove at quite a modest speed past us. As it did we realised the driver was Her Majesty The Queen, the Duke of Edinburgh was sitting beside her and one of their sons, I think Edward, was in the back. No escort, no guards. I do know my wife and I stood stock still. We didn't wave or cheer or anything – what do you do when the Queen of England drives past only feet away from you? I still don't know but I'm proud it happened.

    On the music scene in the early 80's I was privileged to spend 3 days taking photos at the Martin factory in Nazareth for an AV programme we were making for a client. Mike Longworth was my guide and introduced me to C F Martin III the present President's grandfather. He was already an age when most people think about retiring; when we shook hands he greeted me warmly and I said what an honour it was to meet him. He replied that it was a happy coincidence because he'd started taking life easy - by 'only going into his office from 10am to 4pm'!

    Finally to go back to the OP's original theme, most of my life I've worked in television. Most really big 'stars' are decent people with the full range of ordinary foibles. As a friend in the business once said to me 'the bathroom is a great leveller, we all use it'. A few became good friends, and a few I'd happily have left in the bathroom, but most are just ordinary people making a living.
     
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  9. fredberry

    fredberry Electromatic

    28
    Jan 17, 2017
    Los Angeles
    Back in the early '90's I often traveled between Nashville and Los Angeles. On one flight going to Nashville Muhammad Ali with his wife and son were also making the trip. As often happens, the outgoing flight was delayed. Surprisingly, Ali was not in some private room awaiting boarding but right out with the rest of us. I will never forget him sitting on his briefcase when people would walk up, he would stand up, shake their hand and pose for a picture if they had a camera. This happened over and over again. When we boarded he ended up sitting right behind me (window seat) in first class with his wife and son in the seats directly across the aisle. The person sitting next to him turned out to be a school teacher (which I learned when she introduced herself). What amazed me was the conversation they had during the flight. I couldn't understand a word he said but she did!
     
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  10. Synchro

    Synchro The artist formerly known as: Synchro Staff Member

    Jun 2, 2008
    Tucson
    Admin Post
    I have heard before that the Queen of England was known to drive herself, in her own car. I believe that, at one time, she drove a fairly modest, working class car.
     
  11. fredberry

    fredberry Electromatic

    28
    Jan 17, 2017
    Los Angeles
    Here is the photo I referenced earlier showing my wife holding an Oscar (same one that went into space and was presented from space to George Lucas circa ~1997). This picture comes from Fred Berry Jr.'s web site from 5 years ago. His father who was well known by his TV character name 'Rerun' passed in 2003.
    Rerun with Wife Holding Oscar.jpg
     
  12. Bertotti

    Bertotti Friend of Fred

    Jul 20, 2017
    South Dakota
    I have a good one for you guys. I didn't at the time know who it was but when I got to our apartment I found out. It was all over the news.

    Out in Southern California, I used to repair medical equipment, Basically from Redlands to Blythe up to Bishop, any clinic or hosp that had our gear.
    Well the guy who covered LA couldn't make it to one of his hospitals so I drove in, a nightmare as usual if you don't plan around traffic, and on my way home Five chips with lights on pull up next to me and every one flag me over as they pass. They create a wedge that forces me and everyone behind to the off-ramp. Right when I start to pull over a white Blazer flys by me. I thinking what the hell was that. I walk in out place and my Wife says check it out OJ killed his wife! Yep, I got passed within feet by OJ Simpson.
     
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  13. stevo

    stevo Friend of Fred

    May 1, 2012
    Atlanta
    Yes, for sure. Jewel Kilcher.

    I was on a small plane from Denver to Durango for a mountain hiking trip on year and was sitting next to a pleasant enough female. She looked at my airport sandwich and made a snarky comment while holding up hers and said, "I'll let you eat yours first ha ha...". As the flight progressed, I noticed she was watching episodes of "The Voice" on her laptop and I started to suspect that she was Jewel Kilcher. Soon enough, I was 100% certain she was Jewel. Pretty cool - she had no pretense about her and I didn't really feel that it made sense to say anything about her identity. Yep, I sat next to Jewel for an hour one day.
     
  14. flip

    flip Electromatic

    65
    Jun 22, 2020
    Manchester UK
    I can't comment on the Queen's car - in today's paper she's pictured driving a Range Rover but I guess that depends on your definition of a working class car. What I can tell you is that at the British Motor Museum at Gaydon in the Midlands not far from Warwick and Stratford-on-Avon I've seen cars that belonged to the present Queen's mother and a Jaguar that Diana Princess of Wales drove. Sorry this is getting a bit off topic!
     
  15. Tadhg

    Tadhg Gretschie

    260
    Aug 8, 2019
    Qld - Australia
    During WWII she trained as a driver and mechanic...
    When she was a lass, India was the jewel of the British Empire. Now, in an automotive sense, India holds the Empire's jewels - they own Jaguar Land Rover. I don't think a Rangie's ever been described as a working class car...

    Thankfully, Prince Philip no longer drives. For everyone's safety. :oops:

    No stories of famous people here.... Well, no one anyone else would know!
     
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  16. Bertotti

    Bertotti Friend of Fred

    Jul 20, 2017
    South Dakota
    I wish I could remember some other stories. I have met a lot of people others would call famous but to me, they were just people and I treated them as people. I didn't always know who they were. I had one tell me who he was and have since forgotten. I just don't find the typical famous people that I met worth remembering. Uptight better than thou attitudes.

    Anyone, remember the movie Wackiest Ship in the Army? I was working on a blood-gas instrument in LA one day and this old guy gets wheeled in and starts chatting with me while he waits to get blood drawn. We got along pretty good for the little bit we talked, hen his personal nurse/assistant comes in and they head out for a bit then come back and offer me a job as his new Assistant. Turns out his assistant was leaving and he needed a new person. He would move my wife and I into his guest house, paid well, but would only allow two cats. I had six and to me, they were like my kids. My wife couldn't have kids and we didn't make enough to adopt at that time. I turned him down.

    I got approached at LAX one time by a guy named John. I actually remember him. He invited us out to his house in Marina Del Rey for a party and gave his number to me to give him a call when he got back from filming a commercial. Turned out he was a producer. I thought it was all kind of odd, in the midwest we would have been friends and partied but in Ca. things don't always work like that and I wasn't about to expose my wife to the weirdness out there. Later on, I found out he was a producer and I probably blew a big chance but looking back I don't think I would have faired well in that environment. I should have called him though to let him know instead of being a no show. To this day I always call and let someone know when I'm not going to show up or just say no outright in the beginning.
     
  17. Bertotti

    Bertotti Friend of Fred

    Jul 20, 2017
    South Dakota
    Oh, heck my brain is firing this morning. I have one more for you. Keep in mind I have never watched or followed football. A Superbowl party here and there and I have gone to several pro games, going is much more enjoyable than watching on tv but it is for the time with friends more than a game I find quite boring. Anywho, I am on a flight from JohnWayne to Dallas. I always get an aisle seat I am not tall but those cramped inside seats kill my knee. So here come two giants! Massive men and of course they have the window and center seat but can not sit side by side. Way to wide in the bodies and shoulder and the plane is full. So I agree to sit in the middle they are literally shoulder to shoulder sitting in the outside tow seats and I am stuck sitting leaning forward. Got a lot of apologies from them and the crew no refund or anything like that. But in talking they get into football tactics and such. Ask me a few questions and I explain I know nothing about football really I do not follow it at all. And this gets them going but not about football. It was like they were happy to talk about anything but so we chatted the whole flight. Turns out they had something to do with the Dalla Cowboys, got stuck in the coach area because of the overfull plane, and had to be back for a game. I asked what they did and they said, trainers. I have no idea who they are to this day. My wife was a Dallas fan and I am pretty sure I saw them suited up in a game she was watching as I took a break from my projects but to this day I have no idea what their names were. But doggone they were huge! I mean I was in the Marines and was around some big guys and these two would have dwarfed many of them! Keep in mind I am small 5'8" and shrinking. But these guys had to walk sideways down the center aisle because they were so wide. They were actually very friendly guys and quite interested in a lot of things outside of football. I kind of wish I did know who they were.
     
  18. xtcclassic

    xtcclassic Gretschie

    141
    Jan 9, 2019
    Missouri
    Other than the Joey Lauren Allen story I posted before, I can’t think of any other famous person I’ve met and not realized it at the time, but there was one that I met that I pretended not to know who it was. I worked at a music store in St. Louis years ago, at a time when Geezer Butler from Black Sabbath was living there. One day, out of the blue, he walked into the guitar department. It was a slow day and I was feeling mischievous so I approached him and asked if I could help him with anything. We started chatting, and I steered the conversation towards his musical experience and asked him if he’d been playing for a while or was just getting started. He seemed a bit amused, so I kept going with it while he tried to be coy or modest (not sure which). This was a long time ago so I can’t remember the whole conversation, but at some point he told me that he had been in a few bands, and when I asked what kind of bands, he said something along the lines of “I’ve been known to play some Black Sabbath”. I replied “oh like a tribute band or something?” I finally couldn’t keep a straight face and busted up laughing, he about fell over lol. Good times.
     
  19. OzzPocket

    OzzPocket Gretschie

    181
    Aug 11, 2020
    NYS
    I wouldn't have been able to play it that cool......I'm a huge fan of the original Sabbath lineup....and have always admired Geezer's playing, as well as his lyrical abilities.
     
  20. xtcclassic

    xtcclassic Gretschie

    141
    Jan 9, 2019
    Missouri
    Chuck Berry was a regular customer there so I was kind of used to having a legend walk through the door at that point. Still exciting though.
     
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