It's been interesting few days lately for me, celebrity-wise.
First, last Thursday, Andre Agassi and his wife Steffi Graff came to the Yahoo! center in Santa Monica (my workplace) and played with our kids and signed tennis balls. This was fun, check out: vid, vid, vid, pics.
Here's my daughter almost hitting the ball:
Then I became part of the audience at a taping of Craig Ferguson's late night talk show. I find him funny and he was even funnier live. The audience environment is nice and small - 113 people. A nice surprise was that when there are supposed to be commercial breaks in the TV, Craig kept making fun and be there although there was no camera rolling. I always though that during those breaks, the host hides in a dressing room or something.
This was all good.
But the warm up guy and the whole warm up procedure was just awful. There's this guy telling stupid and mostly nasty adult jokes, who's not even remotely funny compared to Craig and he's supposed to warm up the audience so we can be prepared when the main dude arrives. He kept repeating how we should laugh, LOL, etc, even when we don't find something funny (who are we to judge ;)), it made me feel uncomfortable as if I was on an exam or something. A friend told me he used to be a big Letterman fan, until he went to a show tapping in NY. Well, didn't happen to me, I still like Craig, but the whole event felt a little weird.
The last "seeing stars" experience was the best - this Tuesday I went to see Buddy Guy, the blues legend, live. The show was another taping but much more fun and natural then the Ferguson one. The show was part of the "live sets" by Nissan and Yahoo! Music which means a very intimate show, maybe about 200 people, mostly fan club members and "VIP". I was part of the VIP, which meant feeling uncomfortable bypassing a line of people and also not being able to be right in front of the stage. Whatever. The show was great, Buddy Guy is 70+ years old but you can never tell. At some point he was all around the audience and playing a meter or so from me, to the guy next to me. He mostly played songs from his latest "Skin deep" album, but he also did what is probably his usual routine playing Strange Brew like Eric Clapton and Voodoo Child like Hendrix. Can't wait to see the recording on Yahoo music, they said it should be ready somewhere in October. There was also a Q&A session with him, the whole event was so natural, human and anti-celebrity.
You can see how much fun is going on on these shows if you see how Weezer play Radiohead's Creep together with the fans.