On Fame

“I always thought I should be treated like a star.” – Madonna

“Fame is fickle and I know it. It has its compensations, but it also has its drawbacks and I’ve experienced them both.” – Marilyn Monroe

“Now there is fame!  Of all — hunger, misery, the incomprehension by the public — fame is by far the worst. It is the castigation of God by the artist. It is sad.  It is true.” – Pablo Picasso

If you fail to succeed in any case, it is because you have not demonstrated the life of Christ, Truth, more in your own life…” – Mary Baker Eddy, Science and Health

I find it interesting to note that Mrs. Eddy says nothing here about money, glory, good reviews, or fame. I personally have experienced all four of the latter, and I can’t say as I have gotten much of anything out of the four. The money, I spent — the glory, only served to confuse my ego — the good reviews, no matter how good, were never good enough, — and the fame — well, let’s just say, “it was all a bit on the hollow side.” in fact, let me tell you my favorite story about fame.

In the early part of my career I was working in New York as an actor– performing the lead role in “Hair” on Broadway at night and doing a leading role on CBS’s “As The World Turns”, better known as “As The Stomach Turns” during the day. I received several hundred fan letters a week, was on the Johnny Carson show and the Ed Sullivan show, was recognized constantly in the streets and generally badgered and harangued whenever I went out of my apartment for autographs and interviews with the media.

“Hair”, at the time, was the hottest production on the planet and just across 47th street Dustin Hoffman was starring in “Jimmy Shine” having just leaped to stardom in the hit movie, “The Graduate”. They cordoned off 47th street every night to cars because the street would fill with fans of both “Hair” and Dustin.

So every night after the show I would take a deep breath at the backstage door, then as the doorman opened the door to let me out, I would run pell mell through the hysterical screaming mob of teenage girls while they, for some reason, would try to grab me and tear the clothes off my back.

Because I was also known from television, the decibels would rise higher as I scrambled through the crowd. Then I would out-run those frenzied females a half a block down 47th Street towards 8th Avenue as they chased me down the street.

8th Avenue was an entirely different story. It was just another New York street.  The mob would not turn the corner; they would not leave the lights of Broadway. And so I would run around the corner, stop, and stand and wait for the bus…

To me, that’s fame. I believe it was Andy Warhol who said, “in the age of television, everybody would get to be famous for 15 minutes.”  For me, it was a half a block.

“Fame is proof that the people are gullible.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

“A celebrity is a person who works hard all his life to become well known, then wears dark glasses to avoid being recognized.” – Fred Allen

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For more inspiring music you can download
and information about Peter Link, please visit Watchfire Music.

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3 Responses to “On Fame”

  1. Gordon Imrie Says:

    Pete you’re so modest I never heard this tale in all our years!

    And wasn’t it Warhol who defined a Celebrity as:
    “Someone who’s famous for being well-known”?

    Thx for the Bowie nudge!

  2. Peter Stone Says:

    Peter Link is deserving of fame for his talent in performing, composing, arranging and producing inspiring music. But, he has attained a higher level of success based on his humility and gratitude; demonstrating an all-important knowledge of a higher source of existence.

  3. Peter Link Says:

    I’m blushing. Thanks for all the years of your support and a true friendship.

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