Osh Kosh By Gosh
Wasted Days And Wasted Nights
Oops! The Road Crew Does It Again
By Kimmi Janvrin with a little help from Shane Worden, Janet Litterio, and Bonnie Borgh
MIA: Cindy Bryant
Kimmi: Aunt Bonnie and I left at about 9 o’clock Thursday morning. Craig and Hannah waved us off as we headed out underneath the arches of the pourin’ rain to see our little Cheese Head. We spoke to Shanie briefly and he informed us that he heard Davy do a radio interview that morning. He said he sounded very happy. This was good news. In about 4 1/2 hours we would hit Oshkosh, By Gosh!
Shane: The day of the first-ever Monkee experience here in Oshkosh dawned gray, cool and damp. This was not exactly the way I had imagined things being in my mind's eye while I spent all those winter weeks and months waiting for this first journey down to Waterfest. But God's a Monkees fan, right? Surely things will go alright... The first thing I did after waking up was to check my email for any new communications or inquiries from any friends who were planning on coming in for the show. While I was online, I stopped by the website of our local oldies radio station, and crawling right across the top was an announcement that David was going to be interviewed, live in-studio, at 7:30. By this point, it was already 7:35, so I had missed the first few minutes. I quickly turned on the radio to hear what was what. (I only wish I had been able to record it.) Jones did indeed sound like he was in a good mood. He and the morning deejay, Rich Allen, discussed all of the "usual" topics that are covered in most Davy Jones interviews, so I won't waste valuable space rehashing all of those details, but I will say that he made a point of plugging his website, mentioning that he has been writing journal-style updates for the site himself, and that there was a great deal of merchandise available on the site, some of which he was going to autograph and give to Rich as a part of a charity auction to be held by the radio station later this year. There were a couple of interesting listener phone calls that were taken during the course of the interview. One guy was interested in David's take on some of the symbolism and deeper meaning in HEAD, another wondered if the rock and rollers from the 60's ever stay in touch with each other, (which of course, they do, according to Jones), and another stated that she had seen Peter Noone in the Wisconsin Dells recently, and wondered if there was any validity to Noone's claim onstage that he was the one that taught the Monkees their theme song. David's response was (half joking, and half NOT), that Noone is the kind of guy who likes to name drop to make himself look more important. Yeah, David!!!! Once the interview was over, and I had heard from Bonnie and Kimmi, who were about ready to hit the road in the Quad Cities, my first order of business to stop by the local supermarket to get some flowers together to have backstage for Jones. I would have given that little errand to Bonnie and Kimmi, except that a friend that I work with is interning for Waterfest this summer, and part of her job is to take care of all the backstage details. So I felt it was better that I got some flowers and a group card with all of our names to her earlier in the day, when I knew that I would be able to catch her in a free moment, as opposed to waiting until later and taking our chances with somebody who may or may not get our stuff to where they need to be. After the supermarket run, and a quick stop at work to drop off the goodies, I hightailed it back home to keep an eye on the weather, the situation at the concert grounds (which are only a few blocks away from where I live), and to wait for people to show up.
Kimmi: One hour into the trip: Kimmi: Where’s your cigarette lighter?Bonnie: Excuse me? (eyes bulge) You smoke?!
Kimmi: (satisfied and amused laughter) No, to charge my cell phone!
Then we spent five minutes locating the car lighter. She uses her Zippo when she’s bar hopping. After bit, we stopped for our first potty break and topped off the tank. Aunt Bonnie learned how to “pay at the pump.” She’s moving into the new century slowly but surely! We enjoyed sandwiches for lunch that Bonnie thoughtfully prepared for us. After that, another potty break was required and we again topped off the tank... in the rain!! Our cashier at Schell’s was a friendly fellow. Very inquisitive! After playing 20 questions (we were the receivers) and exchanging life stories, we proceeded to Oshkosh. It poured most of the journey. About 15 miles out of Oshkosh, it stopped!! Coincidence? I think not! Light sprinkles came off and on. We spotted some buffalo in a field.
Shane: The Buffalo Springfield concert is the other way! ;-)
Kimmi: Did we take a wrong turn? (It’s raining again!)
Janet: Raining AGAIN???? We had rain steadily , continually nearly the entire trip. It started raining when we hit Chicago proper on the way up and didn't stop until we hit the Chicago city limits on our way back late Fri afternoon. I should say it wasn't raining our entire way home.....it would drizzle from time to time before we hit the WI/IL border. We would have made much better time...to and fro...had we travelled in an ark or water skied! We checked the weather radar before we left....what good that did..... and it indicated WI was in the clear. Go figure!!
Kimmi: We came into town at about 2:20 pm. We located the hotel then went to check out the park. We found Shanie wandering the streets and picked him up. You should never pick up strange men.
Shane: At several points during the early afternoon, Kimmi would call me up and ask me what the weather was like. For the longest time there really wasn't any change. It was still cool, the sun was certainly not putting in an appearance, but at least it wasn't raining. No, it didn't start doing that until everybody started coming into town. As I was doing one of my half-hour check on the concert grounds to see if there were any people lining up at the gate, I got a call from Janet and Tom who said that they had just checked in at the hotel where I work, located right across the other side of the Main Street bridge, opposite of where the concert park is. Instead of heading back home, I thought that I'd just hang around the entrance to the park, knowing that the Litterios wouldn't be too far behind. It was while I was taking a little walk around the parking lot that Bonnie and Kimmi recognized me and pulled up. Of course, it was raining pretty steadily by this time, and things were not looking up.
Kimmi: We went back to the hotel and found Janet and Tom. We got settled into our room next to theirs and freshened up.
Janet: Dried out, donned our warmest clothing, and set out for the park! After we had the most delicious lunch that is!
Shane: I hope you guys enjoyed staying at the Pioneer. You've got to admit that it has the best view of the lake in the entire city. I think all of us enjoy taking a certain amount of pride in our jobs, and I really enjoyed showing everybody around a little bit. (Tom, come back for more crawfish gumbo anytime! Our specialty!) While everybody was checking in and getting ready to investigate the park, I got a phone call from Ronda Russell, who had been planning on coming in for this show, too. She was on her way here, but unsure if she should stick around to see if things went on according to schedule, or if she should get somewhere dry if the weather should take a turn for the worse. I really didn't know what to tell her at that point, and as it turns out, we never did meet up with her this time. (Which, considering all the flooding that happened because of this storm--more about that later, she probably did the right thing.) Sorry, Ronda--hopefully things will go much better for the other shows we're planning on seeing together this summer.
Janet: The view of the lake was fabulous. And had it been dry, we would have enjoyed a refreshing dip in the lake before show time. The food was GREAT! Shane, you were the host with the most during our stay in your fair city! Your fellow employees were most gracious, and seemed to enjoy meeting your fellow Davy fans!
Kimmi: We visited for a spell, then back down to the park to investigate the line. There wasn’t one, so Bonnie and I decided to go hunting for some snow boots and thermal underwear. We couldn’t even find a sweater, so back to the park.
Shane: While Bonnie and Kimmi were out on a "clothes run", (this is
Wisconsin! We wear shorts when the temp hits 50!), I stuck it out at the park with Janet and Tom in their vehicle, and swapped stories of concerts gone by SLASH concerts yet to come. At one point when I had decided to venture outside for a bit in the rain, one of the concert organizers rode past in his car and informed me that the first opening act of the evening had already been cancelled, and that the second was looking iffy if things didn't get better soon. They were still going to try to get David
on at 9 PM, but things were NOT looking any rosier. All we could do was wait and see what happened. Shortly after this, my Mom gave me a call on my cell phone and asked me if I wanted to hear a weather report. I told her "not unless you have something good to say!" She didn't. Not knowing what to do to try and make all of us feel better, she and my step dad made some hot chocolate and came out to the concert park to try and warm us up. That was a very nice gesture that I am sure everybody appreciated. It's just a shame that they couldn't have met the Gang under some nicer circumstances.
Janet: The look on your face when your Mom called to try and cheer you up was priceless, as was the tone of your voice. We all felt so bad for you that this was turning out the way it was. It was so very kind of your Mom and Stepdad to visit and bring us the hot chocolate. It WAS very much appreciated....by that time we were cold, hungry and WET. We all looked rather chic with our umbrellas, don't ya think?
Kimmi: We got in line at about 5:00 and stood in the rain while we waited for them to let us in. At about 5:20 a line started to form. They us in at about 6 o’clock. They gave us wristbands but didn’t charge us admission. Hmmmm..... this should’ve been a sign but we’re hopeful! So we went up to the stage and waited ever so patiently for Davy to perform, or at least make a brief appearance. At about 7:45, a couple workers came out and started to tear down the little bit of equipment they had assembled. A few minutes later, a young lady came out and broke the news that the show was cancelled. It was also made clear from her that Davy said he wouldn’t come down & say hello to the mere 30-35 people who had waited all evening in the rain for him. This was a little upsetting.
Shane: Yes, it was. My friend from work, Jacki, came out to talk with me at one point and told me that they were just about ready to cancel the show. She had left our card and flowers in David's dressing room area, but had not, in fact, even been in the area to prepare himself for the show. She did tell me that David and his band were staying at the hotel right across the street from the park, (not where I work--this place is our major competition downtown), and that we were free to try and see if we could find him there on our own accord. Jacki felt especially bad for us, as she knew how far you guys had come, and how much I had been looking forward to this. She tried everything she could to have David put in some sort of appearance, but as my new favorite non-Monkee band this summer, the Ides of March put it, the moon was out of phase. Once the show was officially cancelled, one of the workers came out and gave our unopened card and flowers back to us, and we headed back to the cars.
Kimmi: We decided to go to the hotel across and get in out of the rain and enjoy a hot meal. It was a beautiful dining room.
Shane: Yeah, I guess so. Not as nice as the Pioneer's though. :-) Actually, this place holds quite a few memories for me, too. Back in my "younger days", when I was full of energy and hutzpah, I used to come to this restaurant and lounge every weekend. There was a local lady who ran a combination lounge/karaoke act every week that drew a small, but devoted following of which I was a devoted member. Even though I was underage, (don't tell the cops), I became quite the regular there every week...some people even still come up to me from time to time and recognize me as the Monkee guy from Debbie Johnson's show. I have got about five different audio tapes of instrumental tracks to various Monkee tunes that I had acquired during this time in my life that I used all the time in the show. There may even be a video or two floating around somewhere in my archives. As we were walking into the restaurant area, a familiar voice called my name. No...not Jones. It was my dentist, Dr. Richardson, who I talked about briefly in our last newsletter. He was dining with his fiancee and had planned on going across the street to the park to see what was what when they were finished. It was nice to be able to introduce him to the Gang, but it was my sad duty to inform him not to bother checking out the concert. I actually have an appointment to see him this week. I'm sure he'll probably be planning on seeing Peter and Micky....
Kimmi: The bar was right next to it. We ordered our meals, then went to the front desk and asked the nice young lady if she could please send our cards and flowers up to Davy’s room. She was more than happy to. We went back to our table and while we were waiting for our food, you’ll never guess who showed up! That’s right! The King Kong of The Monkees! None other than Davy Jones himself! He sat down and ordered some nachos and had a beer or two. He didn’t really say much but he was sure happy! What a beautiful smile! And he hadn’t aged a day since The Monkees t.v. show. He even let us take some pictures. What a guy!! He was so thoughtful
since had traveled all those miles SLASH hours.
Shane: Actually, he seemed rather quiet and two-dimensional to me.
Janet: And it's amazing how he hasn't aged one little bit!!!! He looked a bit younger than when we saw him last.....just mere months ago at our show in Lockport. He did appear to be quite happy:-))
Kimmi: After dinner, Davy had to say good-bye so we headed over to the bar for a couple of drinks. As we walked in, they were playing “Hippy, Hippy Shake” but it was no Davy Jones. It was 80’s night but the DJ was very nice and played “Daydream Believer” for the ladies who stood in the rain and didn’t get to see Davy. Later he played “Last Train To Clarksville.” We enjoyed a couple rounds of pool. Band members came and went but still no close encounters of the Jones kind.
Shane: I should mention here that although we never did see the REAL Mister Jones at the hotel, we DID see most of his band either mulling around in the lounge or in the front lobby. In fact, Dave Alexander seemed to take an immediate shine to the baby grand piano that is located by the front entrance, and proceeded to sit and play it all evening long as if he had actually been hired to do so! (I even read in a different review of this show--if that's what you want to call it--that people even tipped him from time to time!) His playing attracted a nice crowd of teenage fans that I am sure kept him entertained all evening long.
Janet: Bonnie and I went over to say hello to Dave and listened to a song or two. Bonnie asked for a special request..."Over the Rainbow" however it had nothing to do with the current weather conditions. We love that song. Dave played and sang it beautifully, however we would LOVE to hear sung by "THE" Davy Jones at an upcoming show. Perhaps one that we will all attend together, say maybe in late October, say Oct. 23?
Kimmi: Shanie and I threw in the towel at about 11:30. It was bedtime. Bonnie and Janet gave Shanie a ride home and dropped me off at the hotel then they went back to the lounge for a while. I was out as soon as my head hit the pillow.
Shane: Kind of funny, isn't it? The kids get tired and want to go home, and the adults…
Janet: I guess being referred to as an adult isn't SO bad, Shane could
have called us 'seniors.'
Shane: ...want to stay out late and party. Something is seriously twisted here.
Janet: When you get 'old' you have no concept of time/space/ etc!
Everything goes right down the tubes!!!
Shane: But normally, I am in bed by 11:00 at the very latest, so I really was trying to stay awake as best I could. But without the adrenaline rush of a concert to go on, there just wasn't much there.
Kimmi: We met for breakfast at 8:30 downstairs in the restaurant and began the official day of mourning. Shanie had coupons for 2 but after we were finished his manager Mark said it was his treat. Thank you, Mark!!
Shane: Yeah, Mark can be okay. When he wants to be. He actually thought that I was getting sweet on you, Kimmi. He thinks the strangest things sometimes. :-)
Janet: Another example of the kindness of your coworkers!
Kimmi: As we were enjoying our breakfast, low & behold, there was Davy again! He joined us in the round..... table. He even posed for more pictures with that same gorgeous smile!! He must have slept in his clothes from the night before and he still didn’t have much to say but at least he put forth the effort to make an appearance. What a guy!
Janet: He was just as pleasant and cheerful as he was the night before....amazing! I think he enjoyed listening to our conversation, thus the ever present smile! He seemed to be a very good listener!
Kimmi: We already headed out at about 10:00. Davy had already said
good-bye. We said our good-byes to Janet and Tom and then dropped Shanie off at home. Then we headed home ourselves. Well, tried to. Getting out of Dodge was a bigger task than expected. No one told us to bring our Yacht! Several of the roads were blocked because of flooding. We finally made our way on 44 and thought we were in the clear. No deal! Police were watching traffic at one point in the road where a river had decided to form. It wasn’t listed on the map. We ran into major water over the road at least 3 times. We finally started to make a little progress and then were stopped by a train loitering on the tracks. We turned around and went back to town for a potty break. When we came back the train had moved on. Yippee!!
Shane: Yes, as everybody found out on their way out of town, the rainfall from the day before had caused some MAJOR flooding in the Oshkosh area. Just a perfect capper for a perfect concert experience, right? It wasn't so much the rainfall that we got that previous day that was such a problem, as it was the fact that May and June had already been such wet months to begin with. So much so that the ground was literally saturated and just could not hold any more water. Many streets and bas ments in Oshkosh were seriously flooded, and there was one major shopping area by the highway whose parking lot was literally turned into a lake. It was something to see, but no doubt frustrating for everyone who was trying to leave. What makes this experience all the more frustrating for me is that we are now more than halfway through the Waterfest concert season at the park, and so far David's show has been the ONLY one to rain out. That isn't to say that there haven't been weeks when it's been downright
chilly out there, or weeks like this one, ( a week out from Peter's show--knock on wood), where things are hot and humid, but none where the weather has forced any delays or cancellations. Why me? Why US???!!!
Janet: You know...as disappointed as we were that the show was cancelled, seeing the flooded homes and farmer's fields, that kind of put things all in perspective. Of course we missed seeing David's fabulous show, but seeing the result of the reason for the cancellation....my heart went out to those poor people that experienced much more devastation than we did. The floods that ensued affected those poor people much more than the disappointment of not seeing David.
Kimmi: As we proceeded homeward bound, the rain stopped and Davy appeared in the car! In CD form. So we enjoyed a LIVE show after all! We had comfortable seats, great sound and no rain! He played all of our requests. Next time we’re going to stay home and sit in the car and enjoy a guaranteed show! Or maybe go to a President’s funeral but we won’t even know for sure if that’s him!
Shane: Believe me when I say that I felt the worst out of everybody. I
know it's nobody's fault, but I was so looking forward to having you enjoy a concert in my own hometown. This city can be quite charming when it isn't raining. I feel very bad that you never really got to see that side of it.
Janet: What we did see was quaint and very charming.
Kimmi: We were really enjoying our LIVE show when along came
Jones........ “Wasted Days and Wasted Nights.” How appropriate! He seemed fond of this song. It repeated several times. He really put his Heart and Soul into it! He’s been way too nice this trip, until the finale! If he’s offended anyone, he doesn’t care! Because “You can’t catch me!” He has “No Time!” When we needed sunshine, we got rain. But a day late and a dollar short, the sun did appear. I swear it was mocking us. It accompanied us the rest of the way home. I think we pulled into Bonnie’s at about 4 or 4:30. I transferred my belongings to my car, gave hugs and goodbyes and headed for my home. I made good time. About 2 1/2 hours. I didn’t stop once to pee! That’s a definite first in history. I got into my jammies right away and went to bed. It was time to relax and dream of what could’ve been. All in all, I had a fun “weekend.” It was not by any means a complete waste. I always love seeing my friends and family (same difference). The only serious disappointment I had was not seeing my Mumsy this trip. I sacrificed my time with her to go see Davy. I guess if I hadn’t I would’ve missed out on Dinner With Davy. Oh well. That wouldn’t be a first. So inclosing, if I’ve offended you, I don’t care! Try to catch me!
Janet: We did miss you Cindy, you were there in spirit...and thank
goodness for cell phones!
Shane: Well, that's the long and short of it. The concert that wasn't.
I thank those of you who came and didn't see a show, and those of you who came and didn't put on a show. Hopefully, we'll be able to schedule a make up date with David for next season. There is actually a brand new band shell being constructed this fall that should help matters a great deal in inclement conditions such as we experienced for this show. So David--heads up! I am not giving up on getting you to play here...I didn't come this far only to turn back now. But, in the meantime, there is Peter coming a mere week from now, and Micky three weeks after that. Here's hoping things go much better for these shows, or that I have enough rope to hang myself with if they don't.
Stay tuned for more of the Road Crew adventures!!!!
Who’ll Stop The Rain?
with apologies to CCR....
Long as Jones remembers, the rain was pourin' rage.
Clouds of myst'ry askin' if he will take the stage.
Good fans through the ages, tryin' to find the sun;
And I wonder, still I wonder, who'll stop the rain.
I went down to Oshkosh, seekin' shelter from the storm.
Caught up in the hoopla, I watched the stagehands go.
Three month plans and no deal, trapped in graying plains.
And I wonder, still I wonder who'll stop the rain.
Saw the bandmates strayin', how we wished for more.
The crowd had rushed together, tryin' to keep warm.
Still the rain kept pourin', fallin' with my tears.
And I wonder, still I wonder who'll stop the rain
(Channeling Weird Al Yankovic)