I regard it as a Divine Blessing that I had the luck, pleasure and honour to have hung out with talented Rock Stars, wise Living Legends and respected Luminaries – in my car, at my home, in restaurants and hawker centres, at their homes, in green rooms and even on stage.
I’ve been asked countless times how these Luminaries are actually like?
Of all the rock stars I met, not one had been rude, threw tantrums, or hard to deal with. In fact, I regard some as my mentors.
Some advanced-aged rock stars are still rocking stages worldwide, and releasing new top-selling albums. Try prancing around with a heavy guitar, remembering the chords, remembering the lyrics, looking excited to see the audience who paid hundreds of dollars to see you, singing the same songs (more or less) night after night, not seeing your wife and fast-growing-up kids, hopping onto planes, checking into hotels rooms, unpacking/packing, aching hips, knees, dealing with Covid, missing band members, song royalty disagreements, management / promoter complications, popularity duration and relevance etc.
I provide this ironic summary of my observation – the more talented, the more recognition they get, the more love they receive globally; the more gracious, positive, supportive they are – compared to some up-and-coming talents.
The successful rockers are also generous with their advice and cautions.
They followed their Hearts and Won. They had no Plan B.
The living legend Steve Wozniak (Apple co-founder) once (or twice) visited my home, is a humble fun-loving Dude. He’s a bona-fide Rock Star and is comfortable with chilling on the floor (above image). Steve recently suffered a mild stroke when he was about to deliver a speech in Mexico City. I had corresponded with his wife Janet about this. I’m happy to report that the Fun Guy is A-okay.
It’s those rude posers and wannabes with a quarter tank of talent that are full of themselves, that are arrogant, opinionated and competitive (you lose/they win mentality).
As I drive the Rock Stars around in my car, they are curious (about the country’s history, government, local housing, demographics, cost of living etc), and happy to try local food (sting ray, frog legs, durians) and soaking in the local sights. From an artistic standpoint, they ask what cameras I use, and did I “shoot any good shit” from their show. They always tease me about our COE, ERP, chewing gum laws, the Michael Fay caning etc. Yes, yes, it’s a fine city. Haha.
Sometimes I witnessed that they may be feeling under the weather before a show but once they get on the stage and the applause comes, they give their 110% to perform for their appreciative audience. Miraculously gone is the ailment.
As I tell my friends, everyone in their various wealth levels will have their own set of problems.
I do not envy Rock Stars, they too have their unique set of challenges. A different and unique career path.
But they have definitely earned my Respect.
Rock On, Buddies! Long May You Run!