This is the story of a boy named Glenn Fink.
Glenn Fink was the best guitar player in St. Louis, probably the whole Midwest, during the 1970's. Glenn (he was only about 21 at the time I knew him) could play any guitar lick in the world...Jeff Beck was his specialty, and I got to play with him five nights a week.
(Get your mind out of there! Go directly to the airport!)
You see, Glenn and I were in a band together...it was called the Glenn Lonsdale Band, (Another Glenn) because he was the leader. He had a very tiny, blond wife who played the conga's when she wasn't singing along with her husband.
Yes, for a little gal she could wail. She would also cuss him out every night for looking back at me. I was always
in the back...I played drums.
The bass player was "bald headed" Denny. (whom we used to kid because he was only 27.)
We were on the road, playing hotels in the Midwest for two years, playing the top 40 songs on the radio, and so it's no wonder that Glenn Fink and I were best buddies.
Glenn was the first person to introduce me to football. He loved to watch football, and so, he basically forced
me to watch it with him, and learn the game in the winters when we were stuck in the hotel rooms.
I can get hooked on any
sport...don't let me. I've just now gotten off boxing. Thank God
Somewhere in those two years...we started sharing our nights together if you know what I mean. Musicians stay up all night usually, and get up at noon, practice, watch TV...get ready for the job, play four hours, then go eat at some Denny's...then it's get up and do it again. You travel to different towns, stay for a week or two, and then go to the next town.
Sort of like a carnival.
But there was something about the boy, I could never put my finger on. First off, he never talked. EVER. But on stage, we were like one. He was so good, that pretty soon, we almost started becoming psychic. I knew how to show him off in his guitar solos', and he made me become three times the drummer I was. I had to practice all the time, just to keep up with him.
Then one day, we came back to my hometown of St. Louis to play at a nightclub near the airport. It was my 19th birthday, and my parents had taken me out to a Lobster and Steak dinner. It was just the three of us because by the time we had reached St. Louis, Glenn and I had broken up. No big deal. But, since we valued each other so much as musicians, it never got in the way.
Still, I had a deep hole in my heart because we didn't hang out anymore, and that's probably
what caused the next scene.
After that dinner, I was drunk. Now, I don't remember just when
I got drunk, or HOW I got drunk, it was so many years ago...but boy
...it was a nightmare.
After my parents had gone home, I somehow made it back to the room. And if you can remember the sickness you've ever been in your life, that was me. I was so sick, I couldn't even walk to the john because I was so drunk.
I was so drunk, I didn't even know where the john was
. I didn't even try to look for it.
Let's just say...I don't drink much. Never have. So when I do...whoa
I was lying on the bed, crying when I heard a knock on the hotel room door---it was Glenn.
There was puke everywhere. Very quietly, he got me in bed, and starting cleaning up the floors.
Glenn Fink, took care of me like a mother does her child. He not only got me some buckets, he wiped my brow, cleaned up my hair, my arms...my legs...he got me to the john, cleaned up all the puke which seemed to be everywhere...and of course I was crying very hard, and going on about how I had let my parents down, etc. and he finally started talking to me..."Don't worry about it."
Mature. Kind. Gentle.
He did not leave me until dawn.
No mother or best friend could have done any better. He healed my soul, dried my tears, and sobered me up. To this day, I can't believe
another human being did that for me.
There was no sex...he did not do anything, and he could
have, that's how drunk I was.
Well, on second
Later on that week, my parents came up to see me one more time. My big number was "Turn the Beat Around" (I had to sing it too) and then I played a drum solo. God, was I was so nervous.
On my break, I was sitting at the table with my mom, and my dad came over and said to us after having gone to the Men's Room, " Hey, I just saw that one guy in your band come out of a stall he was in with another man, and I won't say what they were doing."
You could tell, my dad was a bit disturbed about it.
To me, it was just a revelation. I thought to myself. "Oh...that's
The last I heard, Glenn Fink joined the army and was playing in the band. He told me that's what he wanted to do. After all, like me, he was not from a rich family.
You would have never known to look at him that Glenn was gay. (or bi) He had a very sexy velvet black jacket that he always wore...short spiked hair, and a cigarette was always hanging out of his mouth. He looked very tough.
Glenn was one of the most caring, smartest and talented men I have ever known.
Glenn Fink, took a perfectly messed up girl, and gave her unconditional love, despite his own proclivities.
And that's about as perfect
as you can get.