RECORD STORE TALES Part 179:
The Phantom of the Opera, and Paul Stanley’s Autograph
I seem to have lost my ticket, so I don’t know the exact date. I do know however that I saw Phantom of the Opera at Pantages around October of 1999. As you probably know, that was a big deal to us Kiss fans. Paul Stanley was playing the titular Phantom.
My memories of the performance are good. I recall there being a lot of longhairs and leather jackets in the crowd. I remember that Paul couldn’t keep that edgy scream out of his voice, but he still did a remarkable job with the material. I also remember he did a total rock star bow at the end of the show.
Having Paul play the Phantom was a stroke of genius. It pulled in thousands of people, like me, who otherwise would not have gone to Toronto to see the show. And it was a quality show. Paul had the vocal range to do it, just not that classic training, and he was a bit rough around the edges. But who cares? He was so popular they had to add several more weeks of performances to his stay. In fact I missed the chance to see him initially, it was only when they added the additional weeks that I got a ticket.
Now, you’re probably asking yourself, “OK, so what about that autograph? Did you meet Paul?”
No. But DJ Donnie D did.
I worked with this guy, DJ Donnie D. (Yeah, don’t ask.) Donnie went to see Phantom a few weeks after me, with his girlfriend (now wife). While in Toronto, walking down the street, he spotted a familiar figure.
“I know who that is. That’s Paul Stanley,” he told his girlfriend. “I have to ask for his autograph.”
He approached Paul who was kind, and signed their stuff. But Donnie went one step above and beyond the call of duty. He got me an autograph too.
He came into work on his next shift, and surprised me with it. “I had to get it for you,” he said.
I was blown away, I was jumping up and down I was so excited. How cool is that? I’m telling you right now, in my 12 years at the record store, I worked with some of the best people I’ve ever run across. Donnie was one of them. Thanks Donnie!
Next time on Record Store Tales…
Part 180: Google Rules