ROADIE & a yellow t-shirt

Watch 'Roadie,' 1980 movie about rock's hardy stevedores, with Meat Loaf,  Blondie, & Alice Cooper | Dangerous Minds

I was in Austin, Texas back in the early 80’s. My uncle was part of the production team for a movie called ROADIE starring Meatloaf and Debbie Harry. Alan Rudolph was directing. My uncle wanted me to see up close the making of a rock n roll movie and it only made me frustrated. So close…and that’s who I was, I wanted to be where I wasn’t, from day one.

During a break in the shoot, I was talking with Meatloaf and I told him about my work and I gave him a cassette to listen to and he went into his trailer and blasted it. Then came out after the first song, Too Proud to Love, and told me I was a really great songwriter and singer with my own sound and that I just had to keep on my track and one day one person would hear my work at a label and get me. He said you just need the one. He was very cool, he took the time to listen to my work and inspired me to move onward.

A year or so later, my friends were managing me, one was gaining momentum in the business, he had been the tour manager of the Lucky Stars tour in the UK and the other was my drummer. There was a call for an audition for a new singer to go on tour with Meatloaf and my managers were pushing me to audition. I did not want to. They said they/we needed to earn money and that it would be great for my career. I told them I wanted to focus on my own songwriting, and this would be a deterrent, I was upset and then decided to learn the material. Reputation for being difficult?

The day of the audition the one manager, the non-drummer, had a call after the audition was set up – from Meatloaf’s manager and he told my manager that Meatloaf saw my name on the list and remembered me and said he did not think I was the right type for the part. I later found out there was lots of groping, grabbing, sweating, sexual innuendos, and physical actions during the show, and I was relieved beyond words, that he had his manager call and stop the audition. It would have been most embarrassing and distasteful for me and I probably would have walked out. I knew it was a bad idea and yet I was willing to back then and I emphasize back then to consider and even go through with an audition that I knew in my heart was not a good thing for me. You have to follow your gut even when you are young with all kinds of people telling you to do this and you want to do that! I never thanked Meatloaf.

I made the cut in the film, you can see me on stage playing a roadie in a few shots during concert scenes. I was also Debbie Harry’s stand-in a few times. I wish I still had that Roadie yellow t-shirt.