Hi Rod, have I told you lately that we can make loads of money together
I hope you don’t mind me addressing you in such casual style. It’s just that starting this letter “Dear Mister Stewart” would fly in the face of everything I have ever read or seen of you. Trusting this communication to your recording company, or to your agewnt, or to your promoters might not be such a good idea. Best to cut out the middle-men here, I feel. Best if we just keep this between ourselves as it might just be the makings of a handy little earner for both of us…’
I am marking the envelope ‘ Private & Personal’ to keep the contents away from prying eyes and sending it to ‘Sir Rod Stewart, Singer, Essex’. The post office in England should have no problem tracking him down.
‘…So to what do you owe the pleasure, you must be asking yourself. Why is an unknown Irishman taking the time and trouble to write to you (in old-fashioned longhand)? Must be something of interest, you’ ll be thinking.
A new song perhaps? No, though you could use some fresh material, dare I say. Some sartorial advice, maybe? No, your correspondent has the dress sense of Johnny Fortycoats…’
Hmm. Scrub out Fortycoats. Something closer to Rod’s roots is required.
‘…has the dress sense of a Bay City Roller, caught in a sad seventies time warp. This letter is by way of being a business proposal. I considered making a pitch to Tom Jones but I come to you instead. I thought I’d let you in on the ground floor, so to speak.’ That should catch his attention. Let’s cut to the chase. ‘Rod, it may surprise you to know that there’s a guy with a frizzy wig and a tartan scarf appearing this very evening at the El Paradiso lounge in Los Paranoia, Tenerife billed as “Red Stewart - Tonight’s the Night”.
Hermione – that’s my wife, by the way – caught up with this Red lad as we strolled hand in hand along the sea front while on sub-tropical island holiday. There, next to the all-day-breakfast joint, we heard someone singing “Maggie May” and giving it socks, in a bar-cum-restaurant.
In fairness, he made a fair fist of it too, though he needs to gargle his tonsils in Glen Fiddich for a couple of years before he matches the master. And he only had a tiny stage in a corner under the TV, so he wasn’t risking any show-off heroics with the mike stand for fear of injuring the couple eating paella in the front row.
After spotting this doppelganger the once, we noticed his promotional material all over. Mondays, Red and his karaoke machine hit the Hasta La Vista in Los Crustianos. Tuesdays, he is “Sailing” into Puerto Colonica. And so on, seven nights a week.
Now, before you ring your legal advisers to have this man stopped in his backing tracks, let me suggest a cunning alternative. Why don’t you and me set up a TV documentary? We’ ll get a camera crew to follow this Red Stewart around the pubs and clubs of Tenerife. Then on the last night of filming, you hop up out of the audience – unannounced, like - and join him in a chorus of “The First Cut is the Deepest”. If poor old Red doesn’t have a coronary on the spot, it should make a great impromptu duet.
This could be mega, Rod, with a series to be made, easy-peasy, because there are tribute acts around every corner out here. You probably have contact details for Tom Jones, or how about Neil Diamond, Madness (yes, one man covers all of Madness), Sting, the girls from Abba and Diana Ross?
Unfortunately, some of the artistes are beyond the scope of such an ambush by the real thing. Even as I write, Hermione is checking out a man with a leather jacket and a dodgy moustache who believes he is channelling the late George Michael.
And I have started coaching young Persephone in the art of imitating Dusty Springfield. Our daughter wanted to try her hand at Adele but I persuaded her that she has enough hair for the beehive look. If the Leaving Cert does not work out for her, then she can always earn a living with “Son of a Preacher Man”.
I look forward to hearing back from you soonest,