07 February 2005

Star Trippin'

The whole 'cult of celebrity' thing is a strange concept. There are any number of people of public interest, whom I've had the pleasure to meet, and/or drool over. The odd thing about them being, that if I knew them before they got huge, watching their ascent to stardom is nice, but it doesn't change my relationship to them. To me, they're still the same people they were before the developed a following. And in truth, it seems curious to find total strangers obsessing over their status.

As to those I star-worship from afar, I hope never to meet them in person, in a meaningful way. My fantasies of who and what they're about are way more exciting than mundane reality. (I'm still recovering from the whole Santa/Easter Bunny/Tooth Fairy thing).

All that said, I present to you two of my 'famous' kin. First, my cousin Deborah, who has devoted her adult life to the performing arts. She attended university, got an undergraduate and graduate degree in sociology, with very high marks, and decided she liked the smell of the grease paint and roar of the crowd a lot more. She has performed, composed, sang, danced, and worked with George Duke, Kenny Rogers, Lionel Richie, Dweezil and Ahmet Zappa, and casts of thousands more. And yesterday, she phoned to tell us about this joint she's involved in with film director Aaron Baldwin and photographer Bill Jones. So I decided to give her some pub, right here, on my obscure weblog. (She's the one in the middle). To learn more about the project, click on "Hollywood in Black."

Famous relative number two is my cousin Butch, whom I have known since, well--forever. We would spend summers together, hanging out, visiting other relatives, and discussing music of all kind. He was determined to become a professional musician, no matter how many headaches he triggered (in others) by practising the sax. And it actually paid off--he's been a working musician for most of his adult life, played with a lot of Big, Important, Recognizable acts, and even has his own website promoting his many talents. Read all about him!

(N.B.: Butch is the one who isn't Sting.)

There are others I could hype, but I don't want to come off as too well-connected, so I'll discuss those peeps for another time. Meanwhile, do me a favor, and don't start hitting me up for tickets, or laminates, free CDs, or autographs. The most I promise is embarassing stories from our respective "Wonder Years"...


Mona strickt said...

Hi D,
interesting family you have! All my cousins and, come to think of it: second cousins in Germany do, is getting married young and populate the world with one child after another. Not to forget: judging us for moving to another continent.

My career as a sax-player for Sting got cut short in my late teens. I started playing the clarinet when I was twelve and at fourteen I got a saxophone. My determination must have lacked a bit (i.e. sucked) because I never got really comfortable with the instrument and finally - at nineteen - I found practising way too strenuous.

I am with you on the concept of not meeting any of my favourite stars in person, but I also know that I might not be strong enough to not to should I ever get into the position of having to chose - which happens, I am very confident to say, most probably never.

Mona strickt said...

P.S. I have to add that I have been a Sting-Fan for 20 years, so the bit about your cousin Butch is very entertaining for me. Thanks!