THE GLORIOUS CORNER
Story By: G. H. HARDING
IDES OF JIM --- I had quite the magical evening the other night; the kind that could never happen again. It was the New York-book launch of the new memoir from Jim Petereik (Ides of March; Survivor) titled Through The Eye Of The Tiger (BenBella Press). First off, it was held at Steve Walter’s Cutting Room which is the perfect venue for an event like this; and, it was a glittering crowd, including Vanilla Fudge-drummer Carmine Appice; Gene Cornish from The Rascals and Peppy Castro from the Good Rats.
I had just that afternoon finished reading Jim’s book and found it to be one of the best rock-books like this ever written … and, he wrote every word himself. As he said from the stage, during just a stupendous solo performance, he didn’t think he could write a book like this because there was no major re-hab or career-adjustment drama … just a pretty pristine solo career marked by the formation of the Ides, and their huge hit “Vehicle,” (which he modeled his vocal after Blood, Sweat & Tears’ David Clayton-Thomas who famously snubbed him at a show) and, then disbanding the group and segueing fairly seamlessly to Survivor (1983), where they hit big with “Eye Of The Tiger” for Rocky III. Peterik recounts in amazingly vivid detail how the song came together and his first call from Sylvester Stallone. He thought it was a prank and called his friends who did a pretty good Sly-impersonation to check.
Says Petrik, “At first, we wondered if calling it 'Eye of the Tiger' was too obvious. The initial draft of the song, we started with 'It's the eye of the tiger, it's the thrill of the fight, rising up to the spirit of our rival, and the last known survivor stalks his prey in the night, and it all comes down to survival.' We were going to call the song 'Survival'. In the rhyme scheme, you can tell we had set up 'rival' to rhyme with 'survival'. At the end of the day, we said, 'Are we nuts?' That hook is so strong, and 'rival' doesn't have to be a perfect rhyme with the word 'tiger'. We made the right choice and went with 'Eye of the Tiger'.”
The book tracks his growing up in Chicago to meeting the power players in L. A. and is a truly riveting read. I shared a few quick moments with him (remember, I’ve been a fan since 1970) and found him to be funny, smart and, quite the conversationalist. I think he’d be a great hang for an afternoon.
“Tiger” was certified platinum in August 1982, signifying sales of 2 million vinyl copies. The song had sold over 3.8 million in digital downloads in the United States alone by February 2014. It was voted VH-1’s's 63rd greatest hard rock song. Combined sales of original vinyl release and digital downloads total over 9 million copies, making "Eye of the Tiger" one of the best-selling singles of all time.
Also in the mix there, were radio-chick Leslie Gold; Mike McCann from Premiere Radio; PR-pashas David Salidor and Carol Kaye (who put the magical event together); Long Island-musician Victor Kastel, and the club’s Lincoln Foley. Great night.
VIEW WARS --- A nasty showdown erupted on the set of The View last week when the show's moderator Whoopi Goldberg and co-host Rosie O'Donnell got into a heated spat in front of the studio audience.
Rosie was upset because Whoopi cut her off on a Hot Topic subject that O'Donnell indicated she was passionate about backstage before the show. The segment ran out of time and Whoopi had to cut to a commercial.
The Hot Topic was on spanking and the segment was running long, so producers told Whoopi it was time to go to commercial break in her ear. Rosie refuses to wear an ISD monitor in her ear so the control room was unable to speak to her.
Whoopi told her that if she had an ear monitor, she would have known what was going on. When Whoopi did the abrupt cut to commercial, Rosie let loose, the insider said.
“As soon as they went to commercial break, Rosie took the handheld microphone that they use to engage the audience,” explains our source.
“Instead of talking to the crowd, Rosie spoke directly to Whoopi in the mic that she hurt her feelings, and that she was very upset by it and didn't appreciate what Whoopi had done.”
Standing to the side without a microphone, Whoopi responded by saying: “This isn't the time for this, Rosie.”
Instead of moving on, O'Donnell continued to gripe openly in front of the audience in the microphone about what she perceived as an on-air snub.
“Well I just don't appreciate you saying that you were going to do something and not doing it. It makes me upset and I just don't want to have to go through this,” O'Donnell continued.
Goldberg, looking annoyed, shot back: “I said this was not the time Rosie.”
Not fazed by the Oscar winner's petition to leave matters alone until after the show, the 52-year-old comedienne continued to vent about Whoopi's actions.
The View moderator then fired back to Rosie: 'F*** it, I told you to leave it alone and you just don't want to listen. If you want to go there Rosie, I will dammit. I'm really sick of your s***!”
“At this point, you could've heard a pin drop. It was like everything came to a standstill and Rosie finally backed down,” our tipster explained.
New co-host Rosie Perez then jumped up and made light of the moment, ending the quiet that had fallen over the room.
“Oh s***, Twitter is going to be off the hook now,” Perez quipped, causing the crowd to laugh. “They're about to get it,” she continued.
Producers hurried over to the two ladies with notes and information regarding the next segment and when the show returned live, it was as though nothing had gone wrong.
Relations between Rosie and Whoopi behind the scenes at the show have been tense since the beginning of the season, as sources believe that O'Donnell really wants to be in her old moderator role and is having a hard time playing second fiddle to Goldberg.
Additionally, Goldberg has begged ABC to terminate her contract with the network and pay her the remaining $10 million on her deal to go home, as she hates working on the show now, particularly with all of the changes.
Our tipster goes on to say, “Rosie has been a terror from the get-go, only allowing the three new executive producers and co-hosts; Whoopi and newcomers Rosie Perez and Nicolle Wallace, to communicate with her and making it clear to everyone in earshot, she's literally running the show.”
“She has a definitive view of how she would like the show to go and wants everyone else to fall in line.”
It’s been widely reported that when Rosie O and new co-host Nicole Wallace did a test show with two fill-in hosts in an effort to build chemistry. Neither Rosie Perez nor Whoopi were present.
Despite the fact that Whoopi is the regular moderator for the show, leading the discussion, Rosie O took charge of the test show with Nicole.
“It was almost as though she was rehearsing for when she eventually takes over as moderator. It's clear that she would have preferred being in that capacity as she was before.”
YES INDEED --- Eagle Rock has announced the simultaneous release of Yes’ Songs From Tsongas - The 35th Anniversary Concert - Special Edition on 2DVD, Blu-ray, and Digital Formats, and the first-ever release of Songs From Tsongas as a 3CD set.
The Special Edition of Songs From Tsongas contains two different concerts from Yes’ 35th Anniversary Tour in 2004, the last tour to feature the classic line-up of Jon Anderson, Steve Howe, Chris Squire, Rick Wakeman and Alan White.
In addition to the Tsongas show, the DVD is packed with an additional 70 minutes of never-before-released highlights from Lugarno, which we actually preferred.
The Lugano disc features the group in a somewhat different setting: first, it’s an outdoor show that has a stripped-down stage and full on rock versions of the acoustic tracks from Tsongas while the crowd wields a multitude of umbrellas against the pouring rain, which is clearly not preventing them having a great time! It’s a terrific visual and the group is awesome.
All their hits are here, including “Going For The One,” “Roundabout,” “Owner Of A Lonely Heart,” “And You And I,” “Starship Trooper,” “Wondrous Stories,” “I’ve Seen All Good People,” “Yours Is No Disgrace,” “Ritual,” “Turn Of The Century,” and many more captured here in all their glory. Yes, they've aged somewhat … but, the music is as strong as ever. Our favorite? Chris Squire’s inspired bass-solo on “The Fish.” Remarkable!
CLOSING NOTES --- Monday’s The Blacklist (Monarch Douglas Bank) –their second ep this season- was even better than the first. In a funny aside, Entertainment Weekly referred to the show’s pacing as having the viewer flying blind for 48 of the show's 60 minutes; storing away information that might be useful later on … funny and also true. This is one show you must pay attention too. Also, the show’s use of programming music is just off the charts. Monday’s episode concluded with Tom Odell’s “Heal.” Just exquisite and spot on. This show’s Class A all the way …
Guitarworld has a sensational interview with Jim Peterik; check it out.
Gone Girl with Ben Affleck is out Friday. I don’t recall seeing so much positive press on a movie since I don’t know when. The reviews for this David Fincher-directed epic have been, well epic. Looking forward to it.
SIGHTINGS: How Alfo learned to Love Women playwright Vincent Amelio huddling with his director Robert Funaro on Seventh Avenue and 29th street in NYC; Rockers On Broadway’s Donnie Kehr at the Cutting Room.