Okay so where did i leave off? Oh yes sitting in a field at a tiny little festival when the craziest thing in the world that ever happened to me happened. You should probably be sure to read Part One or you wont have a clue what i am talking about.

But the one that will stick in my mind forever the rest of my life as the best thing so far that’s ever happened to me, the coolest  one, was the shock of that day in that tiny little festival in Kent.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Now i have had some extremely cool stuff happen to me in my lifetime. been backstage at about 400  rock concerts. Danced with  Baryshnikov, met Cyd Charise, Kirk Douglas,Marge Champion, Liz Taylor,  Cher, Nanette Fabry, Spoken on the phone with Fred Astaire, and that just what i can remember at the moment off the top of my head.I’ve met and known and been friends or lovers with people in rock and roll most people would kill to spend five mins with. Been in a twenty year relationship with living legend Eric Burdon which i have since written a very well received book about http://www.evenrockandrollhasfairytales.com

serna

But if  ever asked  what the coolest thing that ever happened to me the first thing i would say is the day Glenn Tilbrook and Chris Difford   gave me the biggest shock of my life and  turned the worst day of my life into one of the greatest. Although talking to Fred and meeting Misha was  amazing,  But i orchestrated  all of those other things. i made them happen.

Glenn and Chris  were just… sprung upon me

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

So if you’ve gone back and read part one, you probably get  that if it wasn’t bad enough  i had already mythologized glenn and Squeeze  to  completely unrealistic( but i think pretty well deserved proportions)  when i was just a kid , having them appear like genies from a bottle  on that day in Kent in 2007 was too much to believe, My friend Simon said he was worried i might have thought i was having a hallucination and thats what it felt like. Like the whole thing was a practical joke or some crazy dream.

SO on, that day, do you think THAT’S the day i would have the nerve to speak to them?

My god i didn’t say a word to anyone the entire weekend. My brain just kept saying over and over ” I CANT BELIEVE THAT JUST HAPPENED”  and so that’s all that would have, and did ,come out of my mouth for a week. That certainly made them even more intimidating not LESS for gods sake. I hid from them the entire festival terrified of what nonsense would pour out if i accidentally made any actual contact.

thanks to that day,  instead of being the most miserable human being on the planet when it came time to go home there was the biggest smile you’ve ever seen on my face and it didn’t go away for months every single time i told the story and comes back each time i think of it to this day. And 6 days or so later with my family sitting in the arena in Virginia  when Squeeze took the stage  no one cheered louder or was happier than me .  The last thing i expected when i came home from my trip.

The next couple of years were great, my kids grew out of the obnoxious stage that was driving me crazy, i was still going to London when i could and Squeeze was still  a regular  part of our lives. I took the whole family to a gig at The Rams Head, And when we were all in the car arguing about who got to pick the music the Squeeze  CDs always won, because every single one of the family had no  no objection to a single song on them, enjoyed it and sang along.

My last trip to London was Feb 2099 and  in 2010 i started seriously writing almost 24/7  from then until… well, i still do.

I paid no attention at all to concerts and albums and  who was coming to town while i worked on my book. But when i did get the rock and roll itch ,  once i finished the book last year guess who was coming to town ( how DO they DO that?) Sure enough, in just a few weeks Glenn was going to be at The Rams Head a couple hours away. So i bought four tickets  to take the family.

I joined a facebook group for Squeeze and so i was really excited about the gig and met the lovely Jane Johnson a huge Squeeze fan and very soon we became friends. My then  14 year old son Ian, who is mildly autistic was really excited about the show.

But unfortunately two days before the gig i had to have an emergency gallbladder removal so we all had to miss it and it was such a disappointment Especially laying on the couch afterwards in pain  and miserable hearing everyone in the squeeze facebook group talking about how fantastic the gigs were. it was really depressing the whole next year hearing about all the wonderful  events and shows and seeing the pictures and videos while i was getting better of all the fantastic squeeze stuff going on in the USA and UK i had missed out on. SO WHEN TICKETS FOR THE SHOWS THIS WEEK WENT ON SALE FOUR MONTHS AGO I WAS ECSTATIC!

AND NOW… drum roll please  at long last we finally get to  the shows THIS WEEK im theoreticlly blogging about. lol

Once again bought four tickets to Glenn  at the Rams Head the instant they went on sale.

In my excitement  i didnt realize it was the Rams Head in Annapolis Not Baltimore and it was a 21 and older only show until the week before the gig. So neither of my kids could go  and i had to let them down once again. It would just have to be me and my friend Elizabeth unless we could find someone to take the other two tickets.  Knowing Jane was in contact with Glenn and his people somehow  i asked her if Glenn had the power to say my 15 year old could come, despite the club rules and at Jane’s insistence that i must get over my terror of  speaking to Glenn( i had told her all about how i was terrified of him) i asked if  maybe we could get  backstage to see Glenn.

This time i was really GOING TO DO IT! SAY SOMETHING Anything to him. for the first time in my life . after 35 years AND NOT SOMETHING STUPID. Hopefully .

The day of the show arrived but i had no confirmation that Ian would be able to go and to get to Annapolis from Germantown on public transport was a feat i had never attempted, which i knew would take most of the day so it would just have to be me and Elizabeth and two empty chairs.  Five and a half wretched hours after  3 pm when i left my house  i arrived completely shattered at the gig  in Annapolis Monday night at 8: 20   and so i  had already missed most of the first half.  But i walked in the door just as he started one of my fav songs Messed Around which i would have been heartbroken to have missed so I got very lucky in that respect.

I asked about my four  purchased tickets, and expected  to use the  single ticket i purchased of the four which was the only one that i needed and was given an envelope. When i opened it up there was a complimentary ticket for me,  one for my daughter and one for my son , making an exception to the 21 plus rule, on orders straight  from team Glenn thanks to Jane! Now i had seven seats, but no kids, and for one friend but I so much appreciated her help , Glenn’s kindness and the gesture. It all was making me feel i  just might just be able to do it!

here is a bit of Glenn for you. So talented! So Nice!  So fun !…. SO SCARY ? lol

Turns out they had sent me a message but i had already left for the gig, since it was so far away and  without  the kids since i wasn’t 100 percent sure they would be able to get in.  Ian and Roby would have lost their minds  anyway on the godawful over five hour trip on public transport to the show if i had brought them so it really was for the best in the end. I find Elizabeth and we settle in and Glenn is marvelous, as always.  Watching him alone on the stage reminded me of the very first time i had seen him and my chin had dropped so far it had rendered me perpetually mute, at least when it came to him. Curls no longer golden,  body more grounded,  as he played, now longer the light- hearted, fluffy, bands  pretty- boy, the golden angel in white, finger fluttering ,  He and the guitar were more like Fred and Ginger  these days then a teennager capturing butterflies. I’ve never been very good at remembering the set list or taking notes on each song when its a show that enthralls me, but Glenn was  in fantastic form, funny, brilliant and as always his talent just  overwhelms me. I just get spellbound. A mix of old favorites and newer material, a little goofiness and loads of fun. This is an old gig but i haven’t found any videos yet of the shows the last two days.. And i love this song

Before i knew it the show was over and after 35 years  at last the moment had come. I had to talk to Glenn.  At least to say thank you, if nothing else . There was no way out of it this time!

While standing in line a beautiful , dark haired, tall English girl said “Hello”, how are you? and taking a guess i figured she was part of his entourage so i said to her” Hi, I’m Sherry, Jane’s friend”  And she immediately sprung into action. apologizing for us getting the message too late and running off to bring me  a free mug and  free copy of his  wonderful new album  Happy Ending.  Just then Elizabeth shoved me “GO! Now’s your chance! Go talk to him!”

So after 35 years and all of this,  hearing my  story… what the hell  do you think i was i supposed to? or going to say?

fuck if i knew.

By now i bet the curiosity (boredom) is killing you so  mercifully i will put you out of your misery.

Well… i said thanks and explained why Ian couldn’t make it and he autographed the album for him. i knew i only  had the  approximate three minutes  typical and appropriate for a meet and greet.  So i gave him the condensed version of this entire saga consisting of  summing it up in about ten sentences. which probably came out , without the appropriate context, as complete gibberish. Then quite rudely, but at least sheepishly,  asked if maybe i could have a comped ticket, just the one, for myself, for the next night since i had missed the first part of this show, which  he immediately and cheerfully agreed to (and actually did) and then we were out the door and in the car.

I DID IT!AND TO MY SHOCK I SURVIVED IT! And managed to not quite to make a complete ass of myself!  after all this time i finally  had the nerve to talk to him, and i didn’t mumble and drool but i probably did, as i feared, just try to give him too much information  too fast to comprehend, but there was  such an awful lot i wanted to say…. so instead said it all here.

And hopefully if i get this into the right hands he will get it and maybe even be kind enough to  take the time to read it . So maybe  he will be able to figure out what the hell i was talking about. and then, at last, he will know all the stuff I’ve always felt and always wanted to say.

The next show was fantastic too. at a cool little place I have never been called Jammin Java way out in Virginia but nothing near the nightmare to get to  that Annapolis had been.I had sent some pics of the festival to his facebook page earlier in the day and the same girl  from the night before showed me he had received them.  I said something about how shy and nervous Glenn made me and she said” Hes just a normal regular guy. just like anyone else”

and i didnt say it but i thought, ”  yeah, just a guy.  one that has profoundly effected us and been the soundtrack of  most of my life and has more talent in his pinky then ninety percent of most of the so called artists out there today and one of a band that i consider the best there is and as a writers, i consider  to be some of  my idols. but its no big deal.  other than that,  hes just like everybody else” and the line kept ominously  moving closer. To get out the door i had  no choice but to pass Him again. I muttered something or other along the lines of Thank you for  making my favorite music since i first heard it 35 years ago and  then raced  to catch the last  subway train of the night to spend  two hours on public transport getting home. I was home by one and in the hours since then i have  i worked on fixing part one which i did in a rush yesterday because i had to get to the gig and finishing part two today.

If Glenn ever reads this it will be such a relief. Because once he knows all these things I’ve been carrying around i  always wanted  but never knew how or  had the nerve  or time to say to him and when he does  from now on all i will ever  have to do after the show is give him a big smile knowing he knows and just say with joy and confidence and no fear  at all, all that’s left to be said now…

“Hey Glenn, GREAT GIG!”

and then maybe someday we could have a relaxed normal friendly  conversation for a few mins. because that would be pretty cool.

And if he were pass this post to or  a brief message  along to the Beautiful Boy i would greatly appreciate it  .  I told Glenn his name. I hope he remembers it.

 

Hi Beautiful Boy  and surprise! i bet you never expected this ! Remember me?

001 (7)

here  is what i look like now, i wonder what you do?  Best wishes to you and your family and i hope you’ve had and are having a wonderful  life. I  still think of you fondly whenever i think of Squeeze and the one thing i’m really sorry about is i didn’t  get  to say goodbye and i  really  regret now  i never had a picture to  remember you by . if you want to contact me here ( any comment made wont show up publicly until i see it and unless i approve it) i would love to have an old snapshot  from  way back in those days, especially before you got all your curls cut off lol and to say  hello. Luv,Sherry

a648056562_508517_9540

After going backstage at Squeeze at least 20 -30 times in 35 years I finally worked up the courage to say hello to Glenn. After his amazing gig at The Rams Head last night Crazy? I know! The Sherry Fairy, Rock and Roll Teen Queen being too frightened to talk to anyone for the first time ever. especially one of the nicest , friendliest guys you could ever hope to meet. so… why? and what did i finally have to say after all this time? well believe me it wasn’t easy to cram all i wanted to say into a three min meet and greet. but i gave it my best shot. maybe its best if i start at the beginning while i have all the time in the world to explain why it is how it was

its usually is a good place to start. this is me . About  1979-1980.

i first saw Squeeze as a warm up act for Elvis Costello in College Park Maryland that year. two things happened that night, i cant remember in what order but i will start with the concert because its probably much  more interesting to you. When Squeeze came on stage i was mesmerized and by Another Nail for My Heart i was awestruck.

I loved their music so much  from the very first moment of each successive song , something that had never happened to me  in all the gigs i had ever been to so far and i had been to hundreds by then. Glen with his olden curls in a white suit was shining like an angel on the stage. he moved like no one i had ever seen. up on his toes as if any moment he would levitate right of the stage, as if  he were doing the best he could just to cling to it with the tips of his shoes    the single white spotlight was doing its best to draw back up into the heavens where he belonged. He was stunning to look at and amazing to watch. his hands flitting and fluttering across the guitar like butterflies doing tachi and constantly drifting off and away from him as he strummed, then having to be dragged back for the next notes. i was a little too young for a bad case of Beatlemania, but when i saw Squeeze was so overcome by their talent and how their music spoke to me i think it must have been what it felt to see and hear Lennon and Mccartney for first time for me .  And i have always felt that way about the band .

So no matter how many times ive been backstage or had the opportunity to speak to any of them i was sure there were only two possible outcomes. I would  be so nervous i would blurt out a whole bunch of stuff like this which would make me sound either obsessed or insane about how much they had come to mean to me as the years went by or i would stand here like Beeves and Butthead only able to drool and repeat like an idiot” hu hu uh huh I  really like your band” and one was too much and the other too little ( and moronic lol) so in all these years until last night i’ve gone out of my way never to speak to them. i was just too shy around them and too intimidated by their talent.

The second  thing that happened was i fell  from 90 floors high into a mutual case of lust at first sight with  Beautiful Boy on the crew. So much so when they left that night I went with them. There was no possibility  or doubt on either part that he would leave without me or I would let him go. I had to go home eventually because i had left with no more than the  adorable tank top  on my back and a pair of tiny shorts and with him living out of a suitcase there really wasn’t enough wardrobe for two, although i did look pretty cute in his shorts and tee shirts. But mainly because it really isn’t very nice or fair the other boys living on the bus for us to be carrying on constantly(we couldnt keep our hands of each other) and or B.Boy have his very own carry-along own dress up doll when  no one else did.

I tell you this for two reasons. because  this  relationship carried on for many years  and thats why i was lucky  enough to see elvis costello and a few other bands AND BEST OF ALL SQUEEZE very often many different times and places from knowing him and he rest of the crew through him and because maybe, just maybe… someday he might read this. when i stopped going backstage because i had a serious real -life everyday local boyfriend and then married him i pretty much  quit going to concerts at all. And of course that meant quitting my beautiful boys too.

Who wanted to sit in the boring old audience and go home at the end of the show? the only way to forget that world and those friends and that part of my life and not miss it was to forget all about its existence. but i still went to see Squeeze. I just bought a ticket and never ventured backstage  and  never asked if he was here. the last time i saw him we didn’t know it would be the last time so we never even got to say goodbye. so if  he gets a chance to read this someday  i want i to know that sherry from washington still thinks of him  when i think of Squeeze just like i am now and i did miss him when it was over and hope he is happy and doing well . so here’s  three tears for you B. Boy, one  of sadness for the goodbye we never got, one of joy if you are reading this and even just for a moment remembering me and one of regret and sentimentality for the end of the old days and the good times,

So thats enough about that, it was just to explain how i was lucky enough to see them backstage so often.

They were always so NICE  too, everyone spoke of how kind and friendly Glenn was, why did i still feel terrified to say a word to him? As time went on they and their music started to mean more to me as the years passed.  i was only buying the albums or  going to see a few of my special favorite bands where i had really good friends nick lowe, tom petty, ian hunter,  and of course Eric Burdon www.evenrockandrollhasfairytales.com and Squeeze, once i gave up the rock and roll lifestyle  for being a wife, a mother and teacher, and  running my own business. but somehow whenever i needed  a break , whenever I got that rock and roll itch Squeeze was there somehow to scratch it. Coming to town or putting out an album of some sort,  turning up for a gig whenever i needed a show. and when i reached for my records i always played all the Squeeze first . i got to  take my ten year old son to a Squeeze show 15 years ago and they couldn’t have been nicer to him.

My Jayme’s always been a superstar, he an actor in LA now  but even  at ten  i could let him do all the talking lol. I was never fanatical ,only a fan and i’m sure here was all sorts of drama and music  and make-ups and breakups  i missed  out on knowing anything about, and i couldn’t for the life of me tell you the dates of the gigs or the album releases, but i always had theirs  when they came out even when i wasn’t buying anyone elses and could play them for hours and they always made me happy.

About ten years ago when he kids were big i started spending a lot of time at my best friend Simon who lived in  in London’s flat. it was the time of my life! no responsibilities, just pubs, clubs, gigs, shows, galleries, festivals, restaurants,  even west end shows every now and then.  a very far cry from the boring suburban maryland town where i lived with a crabby autistic preteen and four just-become adult know- it- all s whose favorite sport was ganging up on mom and reminding her constantly of everything she did wrong every min of the day. i loved living in London almost half the year . two months at home, one month in London.   i had loads of friends at my  home away from home and i adored Simon. he was like one of the family.  we had the best fun! we went to the stonehenge solstice and camped and then to glastonbury every year, we even braved the mud to see Glenns show in a tent about a million miles from ours.

But i want to tell you about  the summer of 2007. things had been really rough at home, so i took i said fuck it and spent almost  the whole summer in london! seven whole weeks of pure bliss, friends to do things with, underground clubs where every  one knew me, and the greatest gigs and best things to see and do in the most exciting city in the world. we did Stonehenge , we did Glastonbury and before i knew it, time to go home came and i wasn’t happy about it. Not at all  .The only thing that gave me any joy was knowing a week after got home i had pretty good seats at Wolf Trap Park in Virginia to see Squeeze touring together for the first time in ages! if  i hadn’t  i’m not sure they would have been able to  drag me on to  the plane home.

I was exhausted from the non -stop excitement and not feeling well and Simon said,” Come on,   its your last weekend here. Come with me out to Kent for this  40 year anniversary of the summer of love festival.”  His band The Green Ray were playing there, with Barry Melton, “Please don’t stay in the flat  alone and get even more depressed.”

So very reluctantly and feeling very sorry for myself we got in the car on Saturday morning  and left.i didn’t want to think about catching that plane back   to my dull world and my real problems but it was all i could think about.

We arrived and a lot of good friends with the band were there which of course only made me feel even sorrier for myself  because i knew all this great stuff  like this day would be carry on without me, as normal for London, once I was gone

It was a beautiful day and the festival was tiny little thing , like a backyard barbeque, with a couple of bands and maybe a hundred people (though they were so spread out it seemed like much less) in the yard of someones beautiful old home. i was completely drained from all of the non-stop partying the whole seven weeks and basically just being a miserable git so I climbed into the back of the band car  for a private pity  party, table for one. Simon gave it his best shot he came and pulled me out to see a beautiful double rainbow but even then i was still sulky . this was undoubtedly going to be the worst  day of my life.

Then, i heard Simon say , a his voice sounding a bit funny… “Now I’m going to tell you something and at first you are going to think that its a very cruel joke then when you realize its not you are going to flip out. are you ready?” i nodded my head morosely. he made me look up the hill.” Now stay calm because i know what a wreck you are his weekend but you see those two caravans pulling up? well inside one of them is Glenn Tilbrook and in the other Chris Difford. they really are here, i’m not fucking with you and i think they are going to do a set and stay for the festival.”

I’m sure you have heard the term my mind was blown. Well you will never truly comprehend it until it REALLY DOES happen to you! A week from now they were going to be in an arena  down the road from my house in america ! i had proof! i had tickets for the family!what the hell were they doing here?

And all of he sudden he worst day of my life turned into the best.

and ever since then i’ve found it really hard to ever feel sorry for myself again. because once you’ve been sitting in the middle of a field out in the middle of nowhere and your favorite band magically appears and plays just for you, when you need it most, its pretty hard not to know your life is, and  has been absolutely amazing! now its time to go to Glenn’s other show  tonight!  In Virginia. So i guess there will have to be a Part Two tomorrow!

Simon and the back of  my very blown mind, Coming soon Part 2hawkhursta