Spaceman's moment with the Boston music scene

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    Spaceman's moment with the Boston music scene

    Okay, finally saw a halfway decent blurb that unites baseball and music.  

    Not just baseball in general, but the Red Sox.

    And first off, do any of you Sox fans know how Spaceman got his nickname?  Just wondering.

    Anyhow, Spaceman was in town for this event (NOTE: Billy Squier was there)  ;-)

     

    Former Red Sox pitcher Bill Lee had a ball at this week’s fund-raiser for the WBCN documentary “The American Revolution.” The Spaceman said he drove the 226 miles from his home in Vermont to support Bill Lichtenstein ’s film and also to see his old friend, former ’BCN DJ Charles Laquidara , who flew in from Hawaii for the show.

    “Me and Chuck go way back,” Lee said:  “I love that guy.” He also enjoyed the evening’s entertainment, which included performances by Al Kooper , Jonathan Edwards , Billy Squier , Willie “Loco” Alexander , James Montgomery , and former Boston members Barry Goudreau and Sib Hashian , whose medley of songs from the band’s record-breaking first LP had Lee playing some serious air guitar in the crowd.

    “ Dennis Eckersley and I used to smoke with those guys in the runway at Fenway Park,” Lee said. (Since he was in a mood to chat, we asked if the 66-year-old lefty likes the Mike Napoli signing. In a word: No!)

    Aside from the many luminaries on stage, there were a few familiar faces in the crowd, including promoter Don Law, arts patron Ted Cutler, who was with girlfriend, former ’BCN DJ Carolyn Fox, WBCN founder Ray Riepen, “Here & Now” host Robin Young, WXRT’s Norm Winer, Phoenix Media’s David Bieber, venture capitalist Mitchell Kertzman, and CBS Radio marketing man Chachi Loprete and his wife, Stephanie.

     
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    Re: Spaceman's moment with the Boston music scene

    Bill Lee,a great character of the game.He got his nickname "Spaceman" when he first stepped onto the field at Fenway Park,he looked at the "Green Monster" and asked "Do they leave that there during the games?"

      He actually associated with a lot of singers and musicians.He was friends with Warren Zevon,George Thorogood,Neil Young and the Eagles.He also a big fan of the author Tom Robbins (Still Life with woodpecker,Even cowgirls gets the blues,etc,,,) as am I.

    My favorite quote from Bill is when he asked what he thought about mandatory drug testing in baseball,he answered" I believed in drug testing a long time ago. All through the sixties I tested everything."

     

    Here's Warren Zevon's song "The ballad of Bill Lee":

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NH0lvBSfDZU

     
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    Re: Spaceman's moment with the Boston music scene

    Eckersley and Lee probably weren't smoking tobacco in the runway.

    Remember "8 Miles High?" , Remember "Break On Through" (SHE GETS...SHE GETS...SHE GETS hiiiiighhhhhh!),

    What do spacemen do?...they ride in rockets...

    HIGH in the sky...

    ...get it?

     
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    Re: Spaceman's moment with the Boston music scene

    Yes, I get it.  :)

    "I believe in drug testing "  ..  Right On.   

    Spaceman sounds like one heck of a guy.   Glad I asked.  

     
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    Re: Spaceman's moment with the Boston music scene

    Well, he's always been entertaining. He was a a good pitcher.

    I think he may be a heck of a guy, but with celebrities it is so hard to tell. Many put on a false front for the cameras.

    I never met him, so I only can assume from what I've read, seen on T.V. and heard.

     

     
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    Re: Spaceman's moment with the Boston music scene

    He's a Vermonter,so that has to give him bonus points.Here's an interesting synopsis about Spaceman from the baseball reliquary:

    Lee was one of the game™s few counterculture symbols: he talked to animals, championed environmental causes, practiced yoga, ate health foods, sprinkled marijuana on his buckwheat pancakes (an indiscretion for which he was fined $250 by Commissioner Bowie Kuhn), pondered Einstein and Vonnegut, quoted from Mao, and studied Eastern philosophers and mystics. It was in this context that former Red Sox teammate John Kennedy first dubbed him "Spaceman," a nickname writers thereafter used as shorthand to describe his free spirit. At first irritated by the appellation (preferring to be known as "Earth Man"), Lee would eventually approve of the "Spaceman" moniker. "I realized that it'™s the ultimate compliment," he remarked. "Everybody thinks they'™re earthlings but in actuality we'™re only here for a brief moment, and the cinder that we'™re on is moving as Spaceship Earth, so we'™re all space travelers."

    A folk hero to fans (especially to the students, hippies, and radical subculture that adopted Fenway Park in the early 19˜70s), Lee was a voice of reason and sanity in a game corrupted by "planet-polluting owners" and the corporate mindset. Although he often crossed swords with management, matching his wits with their authority, Lee, in hindsight, can be viewed not as a rebel but as a "purist" and "traditionalist." In his freewheeling autobiography, The Wrong Stuff (1984), Lee argued his case: "I hated the D.H. (Designated Hitter) and all the other new wrinkles that had been introduced in an attempt to corrupt the game. I wanted to go back to natural grass, pitchers who hit, Sunday doubleheaders, day games, and the nickel beer. . . . We have to drive these atrocities out of baseball. It will be doing the entire country a great service. Baseball is the belly button of America. If you straighten out the belly button, the rest of the country will follow suit."

    A resident of Vermont, Lee continues to break barriers and blaze new grounds, having recently barnstormed Cuba with a team of American old-timers competing against senior Cuban players.

     
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    Re: Spaceman's moment with the Boston music scene

    As I was in line waiting to get Luis Tiant's autograph a fan in front of me asked him about Bill Lee. His reply, "He was a good pitcher, but he's crazy." That says it all for me.

     
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    Re: Spaceman's moment with the Boston music scene

    Edit: MrMojo, you can't mention Tom Robbins without mentioning his masterpiece, and it wasn't Cowgirl (I never liked that book and the movie was worse) -  'Another Roadside Attraction'.  They should've made the movie on that one!

     

    I agree about Cowgirls,but I figured it was his most well known work.Despite the hotness of Uma Thurman,it wasn't a very good movie .

     Of everything I've read by Robbins,my favorite is "Still life with Woodpecker"

     
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    Re: Spaceman's moment with the Boston music scene

    I was thinking the same thing re: Spaceman's home being Vermont.   True to form.  :)    I had no idea that he was such a character, folk hero and legend; I knew he had earned a spot in history, but not to this extent.   He totally rocks.   :)  

    RE: Bobby Orr.  I get goosebumps at the thought of meeting him, and I don't even pay one bit of attention to hockey (which I suppose is a good thing ...).   He's the pride of Boston sports.   It's hard to believe he retired from playing so many years ago, and still has the status that he has, is beloved, respected and exalted, all of which are well-deserved and earned.  He's the gold standard.   

     
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