Blog Schedule

I post on Monday with an occasional random blog thrown in for good measure. I do my best to answer all comments via email and visit around on the days I post.

Monday, March 7, 2016

Question of the Month

I decided to join this monthly bloghop because answering thoughtful/challenging questions is one way to expand one's mind. Hosted by Michael D'Agostino at A Life Examined ,  the question this month is:

Have you ever met an idol/influence/someone you really admire? How did it go?

This question is a little strange for me as I can't say that I've ever had idol or someone I admire who wasn't a family member or friend. I've met/known several "famous" people, but the one who left the most lasting mark was Scott McKenzie.To answer the question straight off, it went quite well.

What follows is an older post.

After many years of working hard to make the big time, Scott McKenzie became an “over night” sensation with the song, “San Francisco (Be Sure to Wear a Flower in Your Hair)”.

Sudden fame brought with it a certain amount of stress and he realized he needed a break. He chose to escape to St. Thomas where, even if he were recognized, he wouldn’t be hounded. What was special is that he stayed with friends of his who happened to be my high school psychology teacher and her husband, my art teacher.

Scott spent many months in the islands between 1968 and ’69. Sometimes he came to our psych class and sang us a few songs.

He also came to our Junior/Senior prom which is when he gave me the post card pictured to the right. He was, by that time, such a fixture, it never occurred to me to ask him to autograph it. The coffee stain ring happened that night.

In June of 1969, I invited my teachers and Scott to my 19th birthday party, a week-end affair held at our guest house on St. John at Lillie Maho. The invitation was accepted. Scott arrived with guitar in tow. We all had a grand time. At one point he asked my sister and me for advice on a song he was working on. Did it need something more, an extra verse perhaps? After he sang it to us, we assured him it was beautiful just as it was. I like to think he took our advice, for when he returned to the states the song became the title track of his second album, “Stained Glass Morning.” He had left it just as he had sung it to us. If you are not familiar with "Stained Glass Morning," please take a few minutes to listen to this beautiful and haunting song. It is as meaningful and powerful today as it was back in 1969.


But the true highlight of the evening came when he gave me his birthday present. He sat down in front of me and sang a song by Donovan called, “Celeste.” The world disappeared as he looked directly at me and no one else, his clear and beautiful tenor caressing my ears. Never before, and never since, have I been so intimately serenaded.

This is a delightfully scratched version.

Scott died at 73 in 2012 of Guillain–Barré syndrome. I like to think that he's singing with the angels. 


Begin Thankful
I'm thankful I got to meet Scott.

What are you thankful for? Ever met anyone famous? Was the experience a good one or not?

30 comments:

  1. What a wonderful experience. You got to actually know him. I wouldn't forget that serenade either.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Wow, what a beautiful encounter. I know the song San Francisco well.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. He may have been a "one hit wonder" but it was a good hit.

      Delete
  3. You had someone famous sing to you a lot. Sorry you didn't get the card signed, but at least he kept the song the same for you.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah, I kind of wish I'd had the post card signed too, but at least I have the memories. :)

      Delete
  4. This was a beautiful story, Bish. I loved reading it and I loved hearing his voice. He did sing like an angel.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Lee. There's more to the story than what I wrote... didn't want to get too long winded.

      Delete
  5. Hi Bish - that's a wonderful story .. and such lovely memories .. how great he joined in and just relaxed around you all. What fun though ... sad he died of that nasty disease ...

    Loved both the tracks ... thoroughly enjoyable .. cheers Hilary

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It was nice that he relaxed around us and we around him.

      Delete
  6. How neat that he came to your psych class!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yup. Our psych teacher was pretty cool.

      Delete
  7. That is one birthday you will always always remember.

    ReplyDelete
  8. That is one birthday you will always always remember.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Unique moments like these last forever, Bish. Thank you for sharing it with us.

    ReplyDelete
  10. What a great guy and lovely memories.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Haunting is a good descriptor. I hadn't heard this song before.
    I'm grateful for life, friends and family.

    ReplyDelete
  12. That's a fantastic story, I love the idea of someone who may have grown up idolising him realising you knew him well and not understanding why you don't think it's a big deal.

    A Life Examined

    ReplyDelete
  13. I've met several famous writers and I am happy to say that I was impressed with their character. I've also met several famous pro ice hockey players, but it was only briefly. My kids were impressed though, as they got to meet the players and get their autographs. :) Have a good week!

    ReplyDelete
  14. Interesting encounter. I don't know that I've heard anything else by Scott McKenzie other than "San Francisco"--an iconic song of a unique time in our history.

    Arlee Bird
    A to Z Challenge Co-host
    Tossing It Out

    ReplyDelete
  15. That's awesome that you were serenaded for your birthday :) I can understand how being around a celebrity for a while makes them seem more down to earth. I honestly just now remembered that I went to school and sang in chorus with Carrie Underwood before she was famous, and I didn't even think of mentioning her for this month's question, lol.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Isn't that great to be serenaded for your birthday? How thoughtful. I met Mary Higgins Clark earlier in her writing career. I've learned about plot and pacing from reading all her books. I've enjoyed connecting with you from the recent blog hop. I'll be back.

    ReplyDelete
  17. As usual, this is a beautiful post. What a special person he must have been. What an incredible birthday present to give you a young girl. This is bar far the best 'famous person, I've met' post I've read.

    BTW, send you an email today about my WIP and gave you an award over at my blog. Hope to hear from you soon.

    ReplyDelete
  18. Usually the greatest influence I have had from someone famous has been, umm muted to say the least, yet I am almost constantly influenced by them as I go about my life.
    As for admiring someone, that too usually takes awhile to sink in.
    The best example I can think of off hand would be you.

    YOur Hubby

    ReplyDelete
  19. This is a great "I met someone famous" story. A birthday, a serenade, and a nice guy. If it wasn't real, it would make for a great short story... Maybe it still could.

    ReplyDelete
  20. His songs give me chills. Such a beautiful voice. Thank you for sharing your story.

    ReplyDelete
  21. Sounds like he was a lovely person. Thanks for sharing your story. :-)

    ReplyDelete
  22. I remember your post about meeting him! Sounds like a wonderful experience. At the moment I can't think of an encounter with a famous person/idol that lasted more than a minute. I have met some but the meetings were very brief (still nice though). :)
    ~Jess

    ReplyDelete
  23. What a beautiful post. When I went to San Francisco, I wore a flower in my hair.

    Love,
    Janie

    ReplyDelete

Your Random Thoughts are most welcome!