It’s fashion week in New York, and that means the forever young Rod Stewart can be frequently sighted in Chelsea, smoking a cigarette, taking a break from trawling for a new wife on the catwalks. What would I say to the five decades in the business superstar if I met him? “Rod, stop smoking, or you’ll get a raspy voice!” I can see him rolling his eyes, heard it a million times mate, though I probably wouldn’t get a “mate” from The Mod, and even if I did it would be dismissive shtick, though I’d more likely just get the eye-roll and a turn of the back. “Stop recording Rod! You’re ruining the American songbook!” What would it accomplish? Would my dissent drown out the throngs of sycophants telling Mr. Stewart he’s another Tony Bennett? Do I really want to hurt the man’s feelings? What if he’s already stopped, retired and I just don’t know it? It’d be like kicking a dead man, or at least a fairly old one. “You know that story about the stomach pump? I don’t think you blew a soccer team, I bet they just had that stuff in a jar or something, and you drank it on a dare!” No, he’s probably touchy about that whole story, still. Maybe I could just sing him the refrain from “Young Turks.” Would he join me for a duet? Roll his eyes and turn the back again? (What do I mean “again”? I haven’t even seen the guy. All the reports are secondhand.) Accuse me of desecrating his tune? Was happiness really found in each other’s arms, as expected? Is time really on their side? Was it ever on mine? Does it really matter? All that really matters is being free tonight. Maybe that’s what I’ll tell ol’ Rod.
Be free tonight.
This is from the program from the acoustic show we did at some club the other night.