This weekend, I set my sights on interviewing Olivia Newton-John.
She was playing a Josh Woods and FornabaioVoss Events blowout on Governors Island saturday night. Some very helpful people over at Big Machine Media (shout out to Jessica Berek) came to my assistance, hooking me up with Olivia’s person, Michael Caprio. I didn’t even have to grovel much or say things like “Please Mr. Please,” or “You’re The One That I Want,” or “I’m Hopelessly Devoted To You,” or go so far as to invoke “I Honestly Love You.” They worked really hard to get me this interview, and Michael Caprio, I got to believe that you are “Magic.” It had to be over the phone, but I was going to talk to Olivia Newton-John and I, who never gets flabbergasted, was star struck and awe struck at the opportunity.
The phone screamed and it was Michael Caprio: “Could you do Olivia in 8 minutes?” As a thousand OMGs bounced around inside my head, I ran to a deli, got a pen and pad, and called back. I exchanged “hey’s” ‘hello’s” and “where are you’s” with the legendary singer/actress/activist. She knew I was blushing and bumbling and was as sweet, helpful, and fun as can be. She was on a ferry having just finished sound check. A police helicopter hovering directly over my head wouldn’t allow me to get it right. The copter moved as I did and I felt a little like Henry Hill from Goodfellas. Everyone knows I have “Never Been Mellow,” and I must have been a sight yelling at the sky on one of these “Summer Nights.”
I headed to Williamsburg and straight to Graceland tattoo and salon for some advice on what questions to ask. They know Olivia over at Graceland and “Let’s Get Physical” was playing as I entered. They were all busy inking and cutting and I knew I had come to the right place. “What should I ask her?” I implored. Everyone knows the history…Grease, a zillion big records, Xanadu. Everyone chimed in, including the customers. After a couple dozen “I can’t ask her that’s,” a question I could actually dare to ask came forth.