Cowsill Transcripts

Artie Kornfeld's Spirit of the Woodstock Nation
December 8, 2009
Host: Artie Kornfeld

Artie: It's me. Artie back with - at one point was like a very, very, very, very, very younger nephew and now is a man and a friend, very close to my heart. And he's just a wonderful, wonderful man and very talented. His name is Johnny Cowsill, of The Cowsills, of Tommy Tutone, of Jan and Dean and now of The Beach Boys. And ___ of my heart. I didn't know until the other night that he was married to Vicki Peterson of The Bangles, but Vicki Cowsill. And I guess, unless, Johnny did you change your name to Johnny Peterson?

John: Actually we changed our name to Petersill or Cowterson. (laughs)

Artie: Is that true Vicki?

Vicki: I kind of like Cowterson, but he goes for Petersill. We really haven't decided yet.

Artie: Well, I do my name backwards Eitra Delfnrok

John: (laughs)

Artie: It's my new name from now on. "The Rain, The Park, and Other Things", wow

John: Wooooow

Artie: Let me ask you a question. When I was first assigned to you at Mercury, you were very, very young, what did you see through the eyes of someone 10-years old or 9-years-old? What did really see going on?

John: Yeah that was ...

Artie: _____ the music industry

John: That was '65 when we first got there. We'd just left JODA Records. We had been working with Johnny Nash. We were there, god, for a couple years working with him. And we were doing all this R&B stuff. All a sudden that fizzles. We come over to Mercury. I don't know how we got there, Artie. I was a kid. But, we were there. We met this guy Shelby Singleton and all I see is hair spray and finger nail polish. And a 9-year-old guy from Newport, (Vicki: Wooooo) Rhode Island, you know, that freaked us all out. We're looking like, "What the hell is this?" Then, he takes us into the studio to show us around. Haven't met you yet, as far as I know. And you know, we meet this guy Pal of Pal and The Poets. These are the guys who are going to play on your stuff and it was like "OK WHATEVER!" But, I'm just a kid, I'm walking around and all a sudden people are handing us songs, songs that we are saying "You're kidding!!" about and you might be - you might remember that. They handed us a song called "Siamese Cat", um, a song called "Don't Put Your Feet In The Lemonade, We're Running Out of Water"

Artie: You know Gus and me never heard that stuff or it might have never happen.

John: Jesus, Artie, it was awful!!

Artie: Well, I never heard it. I'm glad. I might have said, "I'll pass on ______"

John: Oh my god

Artie: At least you ____ Singleton ______ Quincy Jones was _______ and cool. Quincy Jones jazz and I saw it as red-neck, you know, who was very off the wall. Married to Monty Singleton, a #1 country singer, from Nashville. And that was Shelby and I guess, you know, I was under Shelby, but I really worked for ______ Greenwood, was the president.

John: I remember

Artie: ______ tell me. I want you to hear this and I think I heard "River Blue," - the tape.

John: Yeah

Vicki: Ahhh

Artie: You know and I said, "OK" ____ my friends. I told my friends, you know at the time, you know cuz, I just made this deal to put out "Wild Thing" "Walk Away Renee" and then all of a sudden it's a whole new direction. But you know what? America's talented family, and you know family was always very important my whole life and you know I - all of a sudden I was like I was part of the family. You were part of my heart. And we started to work together and all a sudden I was out of town and I came back and they said - and I had a vote - and they said, "We dropped The Cowsills" And I flipped out and I resigned.

John: When we were there, I have a question for you. When we were there, we recorded several songs. We recorded a song "Most Peculiar Man." We recorded a song "Party Girl." We recorded several demo kind of things.

Artie: Well I took part in "Party Doll" turned it to "Party Girl" I think.

John: OK and then we did a song "Most Of All" which was a regional hit for us in our little, our little world. If was on the Philips label which was the Mercury label. So, who produced that? Who went in? Was that Shelby? Was that you? Who did those with us?

Artie: Well "Most Peculiar Man" was me.

John: OK

Artie: I did that. So, I must have done those because Simon just told me there was _____ Stevens(??) underground art show and they pulled the record by Susan Lane and it was " ____ Don't Drag Me More" written and produced by Artie Kornfeld. I don't remember hearing it. I never knew it came out. I think it was on the first album Donny Kerner said to me in 1963 you'll have to produce it a friend of mine's daughter. So, the way these things fly out. I do remember "Most Peculiar Man" because Paul Simon really told me he loved the version. Because Paul wrote it and Linda and I grew up with Paul and his brother Eddie assigned to Mercury with you guys, but you didn't know it.

John: Well you know that's what Mrs. Reardon said. She should know. She lived upstairs from him.

Artie: Right, right that's true. That's what Mrs. Reardon said, "He's the most peculiar man"

John: (laughs)

Artie: So all a sudden I'm told that ..... how were you told?

John: Umm, I was never told anything. I was picked up and delivered to the next depot, you know.

Artie: Right

John: Listen, they fed me. They made sure my diaper was changed and, you know, 'what's the next song you want me to sing?' 'What's the next trick you want me to do?'

Artie: I'll tell you what happen. Within a week I was already there with you cuz I had money and I said, "You know what? You can find eight people, but this band is going to have a #1 record if Steve and I can write the song, there're going to have a #1 record." Cuz you guys weren't really writing like really hit songs.

John: No

Artie: Now I had been writing with Carol King and Gary Goffin and I had that _______. I told them and I, what you didn't know is that I went out and got the _____ and there was place down in Lenny's building and then I went to Lenny and said, "You want to _________?" and Steve and I was writing and all a sudden ... what amazed me was when you told me that you kept track of every, every musician that you met back then and it sort of blew me away because I've lost contact with ______ two groups of musicians that I used back in my life.

John: Ah yeah

Artie: Like this was right before _____ and ________ and those ______, Sal Detroy and _______, Specks Powell and

John: Buddy Salzman

Artie: Buddy Salzman

John: _____, Ace

Artie: For those out there who don't know, these are the people who played on everything you heard. "Don't Say Nothing Bad About My Baby" The Cookies "Hey Girl" by Freddie Scott "The Locomotion" I mean you name it. You'll find the record, if you're as old as me, you were bringing the record home and listening to it. _____________________ So the Cowsill family. When did you meet Vicki?

John: ha ah I met Vicki in 1978.

Vicki: (laughs)

John: And she's the archivist on this, so I'm going to let her tell you when she met me.

Artie: When did you meet that good looking guy that the chicks love in The Beach Boys?

Vicki: Whooo and I had such a crush on him. April 27, 1978 in a little club in Redondo Beach is when we actually met. But I was a Cowsills fan since I was 9.

Artie: Wow!

Vicki: And so - of course I always knew I was going to marry him, but nobody believed me at the time. I don't know why. (laughs) And, but we knew each other for 25 years before we started dating, so.

Artie: Wow

Vicki: I'm very patient.

Artie: Then the question, Zman I'm going to change the order of the tunes cuz the next tune we're going to play is, umm, "How's the Air Up There" by The Bangles. OK, not Tommy Tutone, we'll play that after. OK ___________

John & Vicki: Yeah

Artie: So, we'll finish with just numbers as the title. Vicki, when were you aware of my name? I mean it's so weird that you wound up with Johnny __________ that you put out, you know. And the fact is that I, because I liked it and I sort of controlled KROC, the first alternative station in LA, that's why it got played so much on KROC. You never knew that.

Vicki: They had played our 45, so we kind of had an 'in' there but when our EP came out. We had recorded "How Is The Air Up There". I first found out about when a friend of mine gave me a - like a mixed cassette tape. Just a bunch of interesting songs that didn't necessarily make the charts in America. And I think it was the La-Ti-Da's in - you know better than I - were the Australian or New Zealand??

Artie: They were Australian and they did "The Pied Piper" and it went to - it was like the fifth record that went #1 somewhere on "The Pied Piper". Now there's about 20 of them. And then they did everything that Steve and I wrote and our second record was "How's The Air Up There" and they cut a great version of it. I thought it was _______

Vicki: It was great. It was completely like the kind of thing

Artie: You know actually the story, the really story that it was about was people who had a lot living up there and as for me I'll stay here on the ground with the real people. You know, that's what the song is really, you know, that's what we wrote about and I heard your version and I was really stoked and I don't know if I liked it or not, but I was really stoked because I never pictured it that way and it wasn't the one that got the most play off that EP, but there was another cut that got a lot of play. It did get a lot of play though, on alternative stations. "How's The Air Up There" was about changing times __________.

Song: How's The Air Up There

Artie: Hello everybody Welcome to The Sprit of Woodstock Nation and it's back you know. We got to keep it going. I can't stress it more that the children need us to really be there and we really have to stop, we really have to stop what's going on with the minorities here, with no parents, kids turning to crack and OxyContin. We got to stop that stuff, you know, because it's almost like Apartheid in our own county, you know, and it's around the world, don't but in reality we're all a minority we're one being and we have to relate to the other beings around us to make it all work. It all works because a beautiful _____ wonderful couple like John and Vicki Cowsill. That was a great version, by the way, of "How Is The Air Up There"

Vicki: Well thank you

Artie: I never really quite ... cuz you hear it and you know, you think you're is OK and didn't like the La-Ti-Da's _________ more of the feeling that Steve and I did. It's the changing times.

Vicki: Good You have to know Artie, that we fell in love with that song before I knew you were involved with it and I didn't know that until we were - we'd already recorded it and we were putting together the credits and I found your name, obviously as the writer on that, and I was so excited because I knew your name only as it related to The Cowsills.

Artie: Oh wow. That's crazy.

Vicki: The Cowsills

Artie: You know when Johnny called after all these years and said, "Artie you know and I married Vicki Peterson from The Bangles." and I sort of flipped out. It was such a weird circle. It was like multi-circles coming together. Talking about the Bangles run. How did the Bangles start out? How did you all get together?

Vicki: Through an ad. About the time of that EP, just a couple years before that and we were all girls from Southern California. The drummer is my sister, Debbi, so that makes that easy. Another family - issue. And we met literally through an ad in the newspaper and Debbi and I were looking for another guitar player to sort of replace one we'd just fired. And our bass player decided to go off and get a master's degree and live a different life. So, we were looking to put our band back together and we really wanted to be an all-female band. We were very adamante about doing it that way. And we were just a bunch of girls - kind of slightly out of our time because we loved '60s music so much and most of the kids our age were into disco. And, you know, or hard rock. That didn't interest me at the time at all, kind of into it now ha. It was - we were sort of atomistic (sp??) that way that we were just so into the '60s and when I met Susanna Hoffs she, oddly enough, was into that mind set. So, we got together and played a bunch of '60's covers and started writing songs that were kind of in that vein and you can hear on that song that we were like a garage band. We were noisy and tried to sing over the noise.

John: Tell him your common bond with John Lennon.

Artie: Excuse me

Vicki: No, he was just telling that the first night that I had a conversation with Susanna was about a week after John Lennon was assassinated and we spoke on the phone - it was sort of convoluted because she was calling my roommate who had put an ad in the paper and I picked up the phone you know I talked for about an hour and a half and we both felt sort of energized in a strange way by John Lennon's death, feeling like this is, this is now the time we have to do this. If we're ever going make something of our lives, you know. Life is so precious, so fragile and so fleeting and can be taken away at any moment that we were 22-years-old at the time. 23 and realized we have to do this NOW. So, it really kind of put the fire under, under our butts and made The Bangles happen.

Artie: So what was your first, did you try writing. How'd you get together and where did you rehearse and how'd that happen

Vicki: We rehearsed in Susanna's garage in Brentwood, so it was a very nice garage. We felt we were technically a garage band. And I think we played things like you know "White Rabbit" and we played - oh I don't know - I played a Yardbirds song. We played and then I played her, cuz I had been writing all through high school and my band had been doing some of my stuff, some of the songs that came out on the first Bangles Columbia record were things that I already had written. So I showed Sue some of those songs and she played me some things that she been singing and so it was a great - we knew that very first night, we'd played for a couple of hours and then just did "OK we're a band. This is it." It was like meeting your true love, in a way, you know. Like when I first saw John.

Artie: Right When I first saw Linda, she swept me away. John, you saw something when you were 9-years-old and you blew me away when you talked about Linda because everybody out there seen you in the movie, everybody listening listened to Kornfeld, you know, including me. Anyway, what did you say? You said to me that you was ...

John: I, I, I said "Artie, I just want to tell you something and you're going to tell me that everybody says the same thing, but I was 9, so I had a maaajor crush on your wife." And it was like, you know, like it was right up there with having a crush on Mrs. Martin, my 5th grade teacher. I mean she was just like, oh god. And you know I had the little kid crush on her. She was ...

Artie: You know it was funny, it's weird because ummmm I __________ because I was ________ for awhile and talk about a personal thing and close with John Lennon tonight, but since you brought that up I __________ which is way off. I'm going to sit back and go back to The Bangles with The Cowsills. What was so wonderful about The Cowsills is that Steve and I did write a song and have some ideas for the background and then just get the older brothers, Billy and Bob, primarily Billy at the time, but Bob was very talented. And all the sudden the arrangement would come back with these incredible, incredible harmonies, that you know, that I'd only actually gotten to play with The Beach Boys and I really only heard The Beach Boys do. You know, just incredible, incredible harmonies. And it was just so natural, you know, and people talk about it. The fact is that is was funny cuz I turned down The Monkees and I remember the day that we knocked "Daydream Believer" out of #1. And now we flash and there I stand, six hours at the Ed Sullivan Theater because we're going to do The Ed Sullivan Show, you know.

John: Woooo Hooo !!

Artie: And this ________ and John ________ the story onstage. I was in the control room and I demanded in my contract that I would do a mix on it so it would sound like the record and spent three hours doing the mix and what happen was just as I hear the organ come on, one of the guys kicked out the main cord to the sound so when The Cowsills did The Ed Sullivan for the first 15 seconds which sound seemed like light years, people were searching for what happen until I just glanced down and I said "There's a cord out there. Is that the main" and it was. All a sudden the sound came out full and I don't know, I mean The Ed Sullivan Show was magic for those of us that grew up watching it. You do The Ed Sullivan Show, your record on the charts jumped 30-40 points and that's just what happen.

John: I remember . . .

Artie: After The Ed Sullivan Show they just sprung up and pretty soon people were saying "#1 in Milwaukee this week" and "#1 in Cincinnati " You know, for me, being my first independent production, my first you know. I'm going to jump out of it a bit. Also there's another side to The Cowsills. Ah, and this is going into stuff, cuz this is real life everybody, you know. The Cowsills, John Cowsill, had a very hard time because he had a father that he loved very much who had a problem, a big problem and a mother who was wonderful and when I left, just left with really no one to protect 'em and left with my ex-partner, who he loves, and I was gone. And he was, he was really abused, and you know, it's like ... I'll tell a story I may not - one session his father ran in the studio and he was an ex-Navy man and very tough and drank a lot and he slapped Barry for missing a harmony and I sort of decked him and took him out of the studio. Fine, I'm not that violent, except occasionally, and it was just sort of weird because here are all these kids that were showing all this talent, but also this sort of like very, very - guy who wished he was living his life through his kids, you know, like he was them. And I think it was hard for them to get their identity, you know. And it was important for me to teach Billy, the older brother, may his soul rest in peace, because Johnny lost two of his brothers, one in the ahhh you know just weeks apart. One from illness and one from the New Orleans flood, which was Barry. And Billy was almost like my kid brother to me. And it was a tough road for them, you know, and I just got to the point of getting together a deal with my ex-partner for The Partridge Family and all of a sudden the father and sort of messed it up, you know, by not letting Shirley Jones. And that's how The Partridge Family happen. It was really going to be a real band because I'll tell you something, if I would have kept producing 'em, if you listen to The Cowsills album you'll hear some cuts, the first two albums, you hear some cuts that are Beatles level because you have to remember "I Want To Hold Your Hand" was pop because I was at Capitol. I know. And when we heard some of their stuff at the beginning, The Beatles stuff we were like "Wow, this is really pure stuff." You know and then I got to know them so they got to do stuff as that was just fantastically incredible. And John Lennon, probably one of the spiritual leaders of our world, you know, maybe on a level with Gandhi, if he would have lived. I try to take it up for you John any time I can, if you're listening. I try to carry on, so anyway, Tommy Tutone, one of your proudest moments I'm sure, John.

John: (chuckle) Well, I fell into that.

Artie: What I just said, how did that effect you, what I just said, by the way?

John: (laughs) You know, yeah, it's all - it's all on target. It's all right there. It was definitely a tough go.

Artie: It's like playin' ...

John: ___________

Artie: Go ahead

John: You didn't get the chance to be our George Martin. You did at first and then all a sudden you were taken away from us and that's how we looked at it and you know all a sudden "Where'd he go?" without an explanation, you know, on my level. And so it's always a sad thing cuz that always happen to us, you know. My Dad couldn't make a deal. Ahhhh I don't know. I, I, I was a kid. I did, I did what I was suppose to do to make everybody happy. I mean I loved doing what I did because I got more love from, you know, people like you and the public, you know than I did from my Dad. And, you know, he wasn't capable of being that, I guess. I don't know, you know.

Artie: Because of that, I turned down the Osmond family when they came, because you know The Cowsills weren't a joke to me because I knew how they could really progress, you know, if they were able to stay together and everything was fine. But it wasn't and I'm very proud of The Cowsills and you know very proud of what they've done. Just like I was proud when they put "Dead Man's Curve" - followed by Johnny did play with Jan & Dean after the accident with Jan & Dean which I didn't really know .

John: Yeah

Artie: And I had trouble dealing with Jan and he knows Jan is a very angry man and but that was after almost being in a coma for most of, a good part of his life and having to learn to do everything and I remember Jan Berry who really taught Brian Wilson how to produce with "Baby Talk" when Brian used to hang around Jan and P. F. Sloan "Eve of Destruction" comes back, I'll tell you about Brian and Jan and those days and ah how The Beach Boys really started. How does it feel being a Beach Boy, John?

John: You know what? There's no, there's no catalog like it for me. You know I grew up playing that stuff in the bars, right before we met you. Playing four sets a night, 7-years old, playing Beach Boys, Beatles and Stones, you know, and all the British Evasion stuff that came out. That's just the best pop music ever. And, but The Beach Boys, you know, they were first before The Beatles. They were at our house before The Beatles were. And, so, I think that's where Bill got his harmony sets from - all, all of those songs and The Beatles songs, and singing all their songs and just becoming this. Bill, Bill was our Brian, you know. He, he, he headed up our sibling core and taught us all how to sing. He, you know, even with a quarter of a lung before he died, he sings a song and he's still the shit. He's still the best singer in our family and will always go down as that. He was the voice on the records, you know, he arranged the vocals, him and Bobby, and he was going to be in The Beach Boys. Carl ask him into The Beach Boys and Brian told him, "No, Billy. Billy you don't want to do this. You don't want to do this." And Bill said, "OK I won't do it. Brian says don't do it, I'm not doing it."

Artie: And the strange connection is, if you're hearing, everyone out there, is that Jamie Heather Kornfeld _______ of these two, best friend was Wendy Wilson and Dennis was the drummer of the Wilson boys and I was friends with Dennis. I was living in Santa Monica and Jamie was very close with Wendy Wilson. She used to stay in a place on the beach all the time. I lived on 18th, about 18 blocks away in Santa Monica and it's really strange, if you stick around long enough, things come around, just like I _________ Jimmy Hendrix ten years before he happen and now we're talking about a life time of how you get where you are and how proud you are of everything you do. _________ to judge, but when I hear "The Rain, The Park, and Other Things," I know that's one of the best pop records ever cut.

John: Ah and it's my favorite one we ever did and it's the best time of it. All I remember is, is, is that full - that whole recording. All those recording sessions. I remember them. I remember the musicians. I would walk around the room and you know, not liking Buddy Salzman because he was playing drums and I wasn't, but I didn't hate him. But we talked about it since I talk to Buddy pretty regular now. He lives in Pompano Beach and we talk about it all the time. And it was just magic moment you know, these kids - you know I'd been working a lot. It wasn't just like all a sudden cute kids playing. We, we, we were the shit. We were the real deal and so to go in there and see studio musicians - which is the normal thing - everybody else played on everybody's records, but ...

Artie: You know those studio musicians had already worked with me on probably 200 demos.

John: Yeah I know

Artie: Those guys were _________ the guys who played for all of us in New York were the best.

John: And they had

Artie: _______, Levin, and Spinoza now and some of the west coast guys now, you know, that are happening. There were it. Were you a little shocked that you really didn't believe me that it was bacon frying in a pan.

John: Oh yeah, the beginning of "The Rain, The Park" I always thought it was rain. But it was sizzling bacon.

Vicki: (laughs)

John: (bad word I think he said)

Artie: It was so strange having ________ and just so weird. And that was the first time a harp, in fact Gene Bianco the harp player

John: Ah he was great.

Artie: he always thanks me. He said I made him hundreds of thousands of dollars because everybody started to use a harp on records.

John: You had him come do The Ed Sullivan Show dude.

Artie: I know, I know, I remember and now to The Bangles. OK what about "Walk Like An Egyptian" that just totally blew you over the top.

Vicki: I'm ____ the whole bacon thing. Are you serious about that?

Artie: Yeah ________ walking like an egyptian, don't forget I was a slave.

John: (laughs)

Artie: _________ three thousand years ago.

Vicki: OK

Artie: and I know there was trouble because a lot of stations wouldn't play because that trouble was going on in the Mid East and I think you were banded on some stations because they didn't want to talk about Egypt. Isn't that correct?

Vicki: That is correct. In two thousand

Artie: Surprised I know that, right?

John: Yeah

Artie: Thanks to Jed Taylor who does so much work for this show. He's a friend.

Vicki: Yeah I was sort of perversely proud of that, because I thought that was so ridculous.

Artie: How did the song come around and ______. Where it that come from?

Vicki: That song was written actually by Liam Sternberg and he was a creature who read a lot. He was living in Germany, I think, and so it had nothing really to do with Egypt. I think it had to do with, he was inspired when he was walking off of a ferry and the people were doing that sort of crowd thing where everyone sort of shuffles in a two dimensional kind of way and I think it kind of sparked his imagination that they were all sort of walking like Egyptians. And sort of turned it into a little, you know, portrait - snap shot of society at that moment.

Artie: Well that's a famous video. Where did that bizarre video come from?

Vicki: We shot that, we were on the road, obviously. We were in New York and literally went out on the streets said, "Hey want to come hear a concert. You'll just have to listen to us play this song four thousand times and we're going to shoot a video." And we played it in front of a captive audience and then Gary Wild went out there and just started - ahh I just mis-spoke, it's not Gary Wild. I'm blanking. I'm blanking.

Artie: That's OK So, "Walk Like An Egyptian" I saw the video. Very sexy, by the way.

John: Oh my God.

Artie: It was a great record.

John: Hey, hey, my wife, my wife in that video is sOOO stupid hot. She's got this black flapper dress with fringe on it, just short enough to like go - to stop action, you know.

Vicki: Alright, calm down

John: Oh my god

Artie: John go sit behind Buddy and shut up. _________ Buddy and keep quiet for a minute.

Vicki: (laughs)

Artie: OK I'm only kidding John. I love you as a man. You are like a friend now. After being a kid in a band to a friend now and that's wonderful. OK, so, OK you're walking like an Egyptian, and god almighty that was, that was number one. That was from an album Different Light, '85, '86 something like that.

Vicki: Ah 80, '86 '87 actually.

Artie: Right and it started on KROC in LA. Also that was the first station to play it.

Vicki: I didn't know

Artie: You didn't know because I promoted that record. Isn't that strange? As a favor to someone - ANYWAY, I think it's a great record. Hey man, can you walk like an Egyptian?

Song: Walk Like An Egyptian

Artie: That's great stuff. Remember when music was fun? And we danced and we had a good time.

John & Vicki: Yeah

Artie: And I really think up until -- you know even with the newer bands -- I think that Counting Crows is fantastic. I really think he is one great, great ??? guy, a great writer and singer.

Vicki: Adam? Yeah he's a friend

Artie: Yeah I really think he is. I think, think that Morello from Rage Against the Machine, is almost on the level of Hendrix. In his own style, he's an incredible guitar player.

Vicki: Yeah I agree

Artie: And there's like a lot of brilliant people out there that some of the older gang hasn't listened to, there's ... we're locked up in Santana or the bands that we still love, you know and ...

John: One of my, one of my favorite bands, one of my favorite bands is Foo Fighters and the song is "The Pretender," and ...

Artie: If you would have told me, I would have had it. So, ummm, you read my book John?

John: Yeah Pied Piper

Artie: Yeah, what'd you think?

John: I loved it Artie. It told me about you before I met you, gave me snippets.

Vicki: I want to read it.

John: If you want more ... (directed to Vicki) you can read it. I'll let you read it. You know I'll charge you for it but umm (laughs) I loved it. I loved the spirit of the book, Artie. You know and after talking to you over the last - you know - I got to tell everybody that we're re-connected. I was in South America and I called Artie finally and I songs like I'm singing "The Pied Piper" to him over the phone. "Who the hell is this?" he's going.

Artie: ??? area code 0013 cuz he didn't know I was on my cell phone and it cost me $300 for that call. And then I hung up and then he called back singing "I love the ..." and by the way John Cowsill has one great voice, one incredible voice.

John: Ahhh

Artie: You know cuz he ... and he does. OK what are you guys, what are you guys individually, separately for the future?

Vicki: We have a couple of things going on. I'm actually working on a new record with The Bangles and we're recording it ... John and I are just kind of tweaking our, our new home studio, so that's very exciting for us because not only do I get to go down and throw a guitar part on a Bangles song if I want to, but then John and I have been talking about maybe starting something together. We kind of have a cool idea but maybe, maybe we shouldn't tell anybody about it yet.

John: Naaw

Vicki: But we're going to work on a record and we haven't done enough singing together. I think it's a good thing. It'll be a whole new element to our relationship.

Artie: Well you have a beautiful daughter so I guess you sung together once before.

John: Yeah, yeah

Artie: I guess you can make music.

John: She's a dancer and our son is really beautiful and he plays bass and ....

Artie: Me hearing this is really bizarre because you're 9-year-old Johnny Cowsill.

John: Yeah, well

Artie: And yet you're a man now and you know why it's so funny because when I first saw The Beach Boys, and you were playing with them and I saw them in a concert. I said, "I think that's John." I said to Carolyn "I think that's Johnny Cowsill." I actually recognized you and she said, "God he's good lookin'."

Vicki: He hasn't changed.

John: Well, I look exactly the same. I'm you know 53 now but I still look nine.

Artie: That's true. Why hide it? And I must admit I'm 49.

John: (laughs)

Artie: I was only 7 when I did The Cowsills and actually John was younger than me, he just can't remember.

John: What's your name, Merlin?

Artie: He's been such a straight shooter his whole life, he can't remember. He never got really that warped. Well, maybe slightly at one point. But here we are today and thank God we're here and I just want to thank, I consider family and I can't wait to see you when you're down here playing West Palm Beach - not far from me.

John: We'll be there. April 4th

Artie: We will all be together soon, so I mean this life so I want to thank the Cowsill family and I love you both

John: Thank you Artie

Artie: Alright, so I'll talk to you tomorrow.

Vicki: You probably will.

John: Alright

Artie: Goodnight guys

John: Love you Artie Goodnight

Artie: I love you goodnight. So, it's a happy day. That was wonderful trip and maybe it show you how much dues these kids had to pay, you know. When you think of The Cowsills, you really don't know they had it tough. A father that abused them and ... it was a heavy trip and it was really hard and you know I had to walk like an Egyptian when I was betrayed by a partner. That's the story of my life. So, anyway, my short term with John Lennon was very touching to me and I've met everybody that everybody wants to meet. I really can't believe, just like you guys were, that I'm with the people and they respect me the way they do because I don't feel like I'm any different than anybody else and I know the people that I know ______ anybody else. Just talented in different areas and John Lennon was almost like an apostle. And I knew McCartney for a short time, well before I met John. And Paul was very funny and charming you know and ____ like I said heard him play "Hey Jude" before he had a melody. In the book I messed up because I heard him say "Scramble Eggs" but I think he did scramble eggs that word ______. When I said "What are you going to call it?" when he played me "Hey Jude" when he - right after he wrote it, to Linda an I alone, and he said, "It's called Scrambled Eggs" that I realized that he must say that on every song. Cuz I know he said that on, ummmm

John: "Yesterday"

Artie: Yeah on "Yesterday" So, I really miss John Lennon .........

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