I'm With The Band

I'm With The Band
The Food Networks Chris Nirschel, The Sheepdogs, Tom Murro, Kaitlin Monte

I’m like every other kid who grew up during the glory days of rock and roll.  I played air guitar. I dreamed of being on the cover of the Rolling Stone. And if I couldn’t do that, I at least wanted to hang out with people who did. I wanted to be with the band. Well ladies and gentleman, it might have taken 30 years, but last night this Celebrity Magnet got his wish, and I owe it all to this guy I met at a party, who knew another guy whose cousin knew a girl, whose roommate knew a publicist named Patty Adams,  that got me through those velvet ropes at last, and made my wildest teenage rock and roll fantasy come true.

Yes, it’s true.  Wednesday night, in the Rooftop Lounge at the Empire Hotel in New York City, I was hangin’ with the Sheepdogs, the ONLY band without a label to ever be featured on, yes, wait for it…the cover of the Rolling Stone. The Sheepdogs, who hail from Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, which they tell me is in Canada, won a Rolling Stone Cover Contest, which is like winning the rock and roll equivalent of Powerball.  The prize is that the Sheepdogs get to make their wildest teenage rock and roll fantasies come true, and not only get their picture on the cover of the Rolling Stone, but signed a 10 record contract with Atlantic Records. Let me tell you something, this was one ecstatic Led Zeppelin meets Counting Crows inspired sixties throw back band. Lead singer Ewan Currie looks like he still can’t quite wrap his head around what has happened. All of the Sheepdogs seem a little dazed, like they are between flights on a whirlwind global victory tour, and aren’t quite sure which airport they’re in at the moment. Wherever they are, I’m guessing there is an Ambassador’s Club Lounge.

“Sh*t was bleak,” Currie said matter-of-factly. “ I saw high school friends get jobs and get married and become adults, and I’m still pursuing this artistic dream where I have no money, no assets and a shi**y car that I can’t even afford to register.” “How’d you do it?” I asked him.  “It’s a long story Currie said, stroking his beard with far away eyes. “Well, can you put it in a nut shell?” I asked. Hey, this guy had solved the eternal rock and roll riddle.  I wanted to know the answer. But all he did was shake his head.  “No,”  Currie  said, Sphinxlike, and then said no more. Did I tell you these guys were rock stars?

The room was outfitted with all of the obligatory accessories of Rockdom: hot models, an open bar that served only vodka, no food to be found anywhere, a handful of hip celebrities, and the oldest man in the room was Larry David, whose not really that old for a mogul.  There was some short rap guy who introducing himself around as Lil’ Something or another, and the gorgeous Miss New York, Kaitlin Monte, rockin’ her sash and a leather dress, minus her crown. Celebrity power publicist Nicole Bandklayder was also there, but after the red carpet Nazi scolded her for no apparent reason, she left in a huff taking her client, celebrity chef, and my new drinking buddy,Chris Nirschel with her. Who could blame her? That gargantuan blonde in the black dress guarding the step and repeat scared the hell out of me. I do plan on providing Nirschel with some of my Black Book contacts hoping he can return the favor with some Black Angus steak.

Ice T and his ‘Cocolicious’ wife Coco Austin, who I hosted a party with last New Years Eve, were also hanging out, being as hip and relevant as ever. They told me they had just renewed their wedding vows, which is completely cool. I chilled with Ice and his bride in the VIP section for a while and toasted their years of happiness. I noticed that Ice had a corner on the only champagne in the room.  Well… He’s got Law and Order clout.

And of course, what rock and roll party would be complete without a vampire?  Sure enough, there he was, Alexander Scarsgard, standing at the back of the room like a mesmerizing beacon, drawing women to him like moths to a flame.  Look, I’m going to call it right here, the guy  has got every bullet point on the chick magnet check list nailed…and he’s tall.  He was even making the rock stars insecure. I’d met Scarsgard once before at the Tribeca Film Festival and I’ve never felt so ugly as I did standing next to this guy.

No doubt about it, Rolling Stone turned out a smokin’ hot cover launch party, but sadly, although in some ways thankfully because I hadn’t eaten anything for hours, all teen age rock and roll dreams must come to an end. Ice T, Coco, Lil’ Something or another and I all rode down in the elevator together.  As we stepped out into the late night streets of New York City, the sky opened up, and we all ran, each in our separate directions, to get in out of the rain.

When I finally made it home, I poured myself a big bowl of cereal and sat down to eat before I became hypoglycemic. Being with the band, as it turned out, was hungry work. I had wanted to stop off for a cheeseburger and fries, but I opted for Cheerios, because after all, I’m not a teenager anymore, and even rock stars have to worry about their cholesterol.

Tom Murro

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