‘On The Road With psugator02′ – Slash & Al Pacino – October 29, 2010
Friday, Oct. 29
11:30 p.m.-2 a.m.
New York, NY
Met up with rockstuff at a Manhattan radio station. Rockstuff — or Keith as people in the real world know him — had received a tweet from former Guns N’ Roses lead guitarist Slash that said he would be a guest on the Eddie Trunk show. I don’t care for heavy-metal music and never really liked Guns N’ Roses but I figured hanging out with Keith would be fun. In addition, maybe I could pick up some pointers from a graphing legend.
Thankfully, Keith had driven in from Staten Island so I was able to warm up in his car while Slash was on the air. Because my flight was late, I missed Slash going into the studio. Keith had managed to get 1/1, 1/1 out of him going in. Slash was doing one-per and did the second after Keith begged nicely. Even if my flight had been on time I still think I would’ve missed Slash going in. No worries because I wanted just one.
Finally at about 2:15 a.m., Slash exited the building with an entourage of people. Slash’s security guard took one look at the pack of professionals, with pick guards in hand, who had just arrived and immediately instructed Slash not to sign for them. “Sign for these guys,” he said, pointing to Keith and I and two other locals who obviously weren’t dealers. One of the locals had a sweet silver Prismacolor paint pen that he let Keith and I use. Let me just say that I’ve been getting graphs since the early 1980s and the graph Slash gave me was one of the best graphs I’ve ever gotten. Slash really took his time with the graph, the paint pen looked awesome, and the 11×14 that Keith had printed for me was frame-worthy.
Slash: 1/1 (11×14)…Keith worked it as Slash exited, getting 1/1, 1/1 again for a total of four. Those marks above his graph aren’t on the picture but are marks I made on the plastic toploader
Saturday, Oct. 30
9:30-10:30 p.m. (a guess)
252 W. 45th Street
New York, NY
Tried for James Earl Jones (Driving Miss Daisy) and Al Pacino (Merchant of Venice) after their 2 p.m. matinees but neither exited their respective venues. Saw that the running time for “Venice” was a lot longer than “Daisy” so knew I could see the 8 p.m. “Daisy,” wait for Jones/Vanessa Redgrave, and still make it over to the Broadhurst in time to get Pacino. I don’t believe in purchasing tickets at face value so I waited in front of the theatre and was lucky enough to snag a seat in the mezzanine for $60 (would’ve been $72 had I purchased it at the box office).
Four-time Tony nominee Boyd Gaines was the first to approach the Stage Door. He gladly signed Playbills, though I didn’t really care about getting his graph. Redgrave was next, and she couldn’t have been nicer, posing for pictures, talking up everyone who would listen. She finally made her way toward me and explained how she was able to come off so Southern. She credited her dialect coach.
Vanessa Redgrave: 1/1 (Playbill)
Now I would have to wait for James Earl Jones, who played Terrance Mann in “Field of Dreams,” which I consider the greatest baseball movie ever created. I didn’t have pics with me, so I was planning on getting him to sign a baseball. Keith and I had talked earlier and we agreed that it would be neat if Jones inscribed “People will come, Ray” on the ball. Or maybe, “If you build it, he will come.” I had heard stories about Jones simply waving, with his health preventing him from signing graphs. But I was hoping for the best.
He finally arrived at the Stage Door at about 10 p.m. He must have been only five feet from me. But I was angling for a graph so I left the camera in my bag. I had the baseball in hand but Jones simply waved and smiled and got into the waiting limo. I don’t blame him for not stopping. It’s obvious that he’s in bad shape, with a pronounced limp. In addition, he would’ve been mobbed had he signed one graph. But it was neat to be so close to one of the greatest living actors.
From there I high-tailed it back to the Broadhurst, hoping I hadn’t missed Pacino. By now, a mob of people had gathered near the Stage Door. I was able to sidle toward the front. It wasn’t but 30 minutes later and Pacino exited to chants of “Attica, Attica” and “We want Al.” In New York City, this guy is a rock star. Barricades were put up on both sides of the exit, but I was still able to get my poster in Al’s face. And I really give credit to Al here, because “The Godfather” poster I had him sign was 90% black. Al, of course, did run with the black Sharpie but signed the poster in the small part that was white. It might be one of the worst autographs I’ve ever seen but at least he signed it.
Al Pacino: 1/1 (“The Godfather” poster)…and a lesson learned: always have a white item with you in addition to a black item. I hadn’t accounted for Pacino running with black.