IMG_2454This little blog is about “Weird Al”. “Weird Al” Yankovic. I was planning to blog about “Weird Al” anyway. But when I found out about his newly released video album, (even the Wall Street Journal is writing about him. Nice going, Al!!!!!!) and because his fame has increased, his name more of a household word, I thought this would be a good time.

Many of you know, I worked for Orion Pictures. Orion was a client of the advertising agency where I was employed. I was on the publicity account. I helped promote “Weird Al” ’s movie “UHF.”

Unlike other actors in the business, who were always wonderful to me, “Weird Al” and I had a lot in common. We were both visual artists. While I thought he had gone to art school, like I did, I read recently that he had studied architecture at Cal Tech. And since I was unlike the publicity people with whom he had worked, we seemed to “speak the same language.” (so to speak) I was also, like he, (I say this because it may come as a surprise to you) soft spoken.

While I was promoting his movie “UHF,” I escorted him, along with his manager/producer, Jay Levey around to Atlanta’s TV stations and newspapers. To get publicity for the film. At the time, I worked for a woman who took credit for the work I did. Not a nice set up. This was not lost on the two of them. They tried to highlight my accomplishments in front of the “right” people at the agency to help bring me more recognition. They also managed to form an us-against-them team, humorously winking at me and putting my boss down. And who in the ad biz, can be angry with a client, let alone, a movie star? Mr. Levey even told me he would write me a letter of recommendation.

The above visual is a photograph of the “UHF” promotional T shirt I asked Al to sign. I expected him to just sign his name, but the limousine ride to the airport was long and he took time to painstakingly hand letter his name on the back. It looks perfect. No one would believe the printing was done by “Weird Al” Yankovic! Puffy glitter paint. I had it tucked in my purse. Eighties style.

When we arrived at the airport, it was my job to sit and wait until the two guys got on the plane. In the movie business, a lot of money changes hands. It was not assumed that two grown men could get on the plane by themselves. Jay Levey and “Weird Al” Yankovic were commodities. The plane was late. We talked for hours. No one was at the gate but the three of us. I am sure some joke was made about how, even though there were only three of us there, I sat right next to Al, as if he might escape. Maybe not good at self promotion at the time; I was publicity-smart.

I still have the letter of recommendation Jay Levey wrote. I have my own claim to fame. Watch a video from “Weird Al”’s new work: