Archive for September 4th, 2018

September 4 – September 9



RANDOM PIC OF THE WEEK

 When I worked on a Disney TV pilot this past week, I had Voice Director Kelly Ward add his signature to my “Grease” soundtrack album; an LP I’ve had for 40 years. He played Putzie in the film and told me a funny story. He showed me the back of the album and pointed out that Jeff Conaway had his hand right in front of another actor’s face. I noticed that as a kid and always thought that was odd. But here’s the story as Kelly told it: When one of the dancers came out of the wardrobe trailer he was wearing a leather jacket. Jeff didn’t like that because only the T-Birds should have leather jackets, so he told the dancer to remove it. The dancer refused, as he didn’t want to incite the wrath of the wardrobe department since they had assigned him that specific costume. After a lot of back and forth between Jeff and the dancer, Jeff decided to get his revenge. So during the group photo, in every shot they took, he put his hand up in front of the face of the dancer. Oh that Kenickie! Here’s a scan of that shot that Kelly was talking about.

The finale at the Yacht Rock Revue show was Toto’s “Hold the Line.” I remember when that song came out as I had just moved to Sioux Falls, South Dakota from Aberdeen, South Dakota in my senior years of high school. I bought the 45 at the local Musicland and played the grooves out of it! I’ve been singing it all week!

Tuesday the 4th – GARAGE-APALOOZA: ACT 1! – For the past few weeks I’ve been obsessed with getting my junky garage organized and cleaned before my parents arrive on the 11th. So when I got up I hit it and hit it hard. I removed some of my tax documents and receipts dating back to 1997! My accountant said I only need to keep the past three years’ worth of stuff, but keep five years just to be safe. I kept seven. So anything before 2011 got junked! I need to get this stuff shredded! I moved some more stuff around, filled some bins and put some more stuff in my underground storage. Then I hit Taco Bell for some lunch, stopped by a thrift store called American Way in Burbank and donated four bags full of stuff, headed over to my mailbox to get my mail, and then I stopped over to Staples to get more plastic bins. I noticed that they have a shredding service there so I inquired as to the procedure for brining stuff in. They weigh it and charge 99 cents a pound. They lock it in a secure bin until their shredder gets there and it’s shredded in the parking lot under management’s supervision. I went back home, jammed some more stuff into the plastic bins, and then went inside to feed the pets. I loaded up four plastic bins full of old tax documents, receipts and paperwork (though my accountant told me to save the actual tax returns) and headed back to Staples to have them shredded. It was about 128 pounds of stuff (including the bins), and it took me about an hour to hand feed them through the slot of the secure shredding bin. As I kept feeding them into the receptacle I was singing Elvis’ “Memories” in my head. Lotsa good memories as I looked through decades’ worth of old mementos and tax stuff. When the bins and file folders were empty, they weighed them and deducted that weight from the 128 pound initial weight; a total of 28 pounds. I had just unloaded 100 pounds of worthless paper! I filled up the entire shredding receptacle, which thankfully was empty. The shredders had just been there earlier that morning, so it all worked out perfectly. It was the perfect day for me to do it! I got some food at Jack in the Box to go and took it home to eat. I rearranged a few more things in the garage and I was very pleased with my progress. Spring cleaning? Nah. Fall cleaning for sure! I went inside and did a few things around the house, typed out Wally’s Week, showered up and turned in for the day! Whew!

Wednesday the 5th – GARAGE-APALOOZA: ACT 2! – Shortly after 2 I woke up and got ready for an American Airlines session at Voice Trax West. It was a gorgeous day so I decided to walk. After the session I stopped at CVS to pick up a few things, and then I walked over to Subway to get a sandwich. I got home and did some work, fed the pets and got cleaned up for dinner with my pal Emily Danyel. On the way to Jerry’s Famous Deli we stopped at Staples so I could pick up a few more of the large bins. I had plenty of the small ones, but I needed more of the large ones. After dinner I came home to nap, got up to record my nightly auditions, worked around the house for a bit, did some video editing, and went back into the garage to do some more fine-tuning.

Thursday the 6th – DUAL-SESSION DAY! – At 1 I sprang awake and hit the shower. I had to be at Disney TV Animation in Glendale just shortly after 2 for some pick-ups for a pilot. It was a blast doing the session, but it was much too short. And it’s always a hoot to work with Voice Director Kelly Ward. (For you aficionados, Kelly played “Putzie” in “Grease!”) On the way home I stopped at Little Caesar’s to get a pizza and some Crazy Bread, and then headed over to Voice Trax West to do a 2 hours session for Multi-Media Assemblies. 2018 marks the 21st year I’ve been narrating these specials that go into schools all over the country. They always have a strong anti-drug/safe driving/personal responsibility message. I’m proud to be involved with them! They use clips from current feature films, music videos and news stories to keep the kids’ attention and drive home the message. I got back home and fed the pets and did some minor work on the garage. My pal Brittney Powell came over to do some work, and then I grabbed a nap on the couch for a bit. I got up later to do a ton of auditions, and then I sat down to work on my database. I needed to make sure that all of the autographed items in the bins in my storage area were cross-referenced in my database. Some items were there, and some were not. So it’s a good thing I checked! I just had Kelly Ward sign my “Grease” album, so I needed to add that to the list as well. I fed and walked Roxy, did some more work around the house, made some sloppy joes and watched a few more episodes of “Pee-wee’s Playhouse” before bed. As I’m in the final season of episodes, it really seems like they’re struggling for ideas. They’re relying heavily on old public domain films and cartoons.

Friday the 7th – GARAGE-APALOOZA: ACT 3! – First thing in the morning I was up to do a voice-over intro for my pal Alex Zsolt, as he would be performing in concert at the Richard Nixon Presidential Library and Museum that weekend. My maids arrived at 2 and cleaned up while I got ready for the day. When they left I drove over to Voice Trax West to pick up a check, enjoyed some combo fried rice at Chin Chin next door, and then drove over to get some groceries for the weekend. I got home and fed the pets, and then buckled down and started in on my final phase of my garage project. Though I had come a long way, there was still much to be done. I literally worked from 6pm to midnight with no break! But the results were stellar! The garage looked like a garage again, and I had lots of room to move around inside! I was exhausted, but happy. I wanted to enjoy a celebratory cigar, but I didn’t have one available. And since it was a little after midnight, the local liquor store (with a great humidor) had just closed. I went to Denny’s to get some food to go, came home and cleaned up and enjoyed the final episodes of “Pee-wee’s Playhouse” before bed.

Saturday the 8th – YACHT ROCK REVISITED! – Back in February I had the pleasure of seeing the band Yacht Rock Revue. My pal Elliot Lurie did a few songs with them and it was an amazing show. Now they’re back at the El Rey Theater and we got a bunch of tickets so our gang could enjoy another evening with the “Nation of Smooth.” James and his wife Cynthia picked me up at 7 and we headed to the theater to meet up with Mark and Connie. Elliot would be doing a few songs with them again, so his wife Edi met us to give us our after-show wristbands. This would allow us to hang out after the audience was booted from the building. It was a great concert as always, and since we had arrived so early we were right up front. But since we were having a late-summer heatwave in L.A., the theater was pretty warm. But it was a fantastic time nonetheless. When the show was over we got to chat with some of the bandmembers and get some photos. Then it was time to grab some food. The sandwich I had earlier hadn’t stuck with me, and my stomach was growling all through the show. So we went to a 24 hour place called Norm’s and grabbed a late-night meal, just as we had done back in February. Then I came home and passed out on the couch. I got up for a bit to take Roxy out, but then fell asleep on the couch again. I didn’t get up until 9am, when the light of the day was beaming through my living room windows! Between the hot theater, and all of the intense work in the garage this past week, I was BEAT! I cleaned up and went to bed.

Sunday the 9th – FINE-TUNING! – After sleeping on and off for almost 14 hours, I was ready to get up and start the day! I got up at 4 and got ready for evening church. I picked up my “adopted grandma” Shirley and we enjoyed the service. When it was over we stopped over to Ernie’s Taco House and his dinner. Then I told Shirley I wanted to show her something. I pulled up behind my house, opened the garage door and showed her my completed garage project. She was amazed at how clean it was, and she said she was proud of me! I took her back to her home, and then I came back to my house to get busy fine-tuning some things in the garage. Though most of the stuff was put away neatly, there were still individual things I needed to get done in certain sections. I did some filing, rearranging, etc. I found some old reel-to-reel tapes from my old radio days, and I decided those should probably go in my underground storage to stay as cool and dry as possible. I worked from 10pm to 2am, and then went inside to feed Roxy. I walked her through the neighborhood for a bit, and then I came inside to make my Saturday Night Super Salad (one night later than usual) and watch an episode of “SNL” from the second season. There were certain things I remembered from that episode as a kid; specifically the bit where Bill Murray talks to the camera and begs for laughs. I remember sending him a letter of support to the SNL offices at 30 Rock in New York. But the letter came back undeliverable. Funny! What a week it’s been, but I got a HELL of a lot of stuff done, and I felt very good about it!

And how was YOUR week??!!

 

PIX FROM THE WEEK

Elliot Lurie wows the audience with his big hit song “Brandy!”


The band and their guests take a bow!


Mark, James and myself before the show…ready to enjoy the smooth sounds!


Nick the lead singer and I after the show.

Here’s some video from the Yacht Rock show!