My mom is cooler than me
“Wouldn’t it be nice if we were older, then we wouldn’t have to wait so long.”
Although these iconic words were sung by The Beach Boys in their massive 1966 hit ‘Wouldn’t It Be Nice’ long before I was even a thought – each time I hear them, I am immediately transported back to my childhood. Hearing those lyrics, I can almost feel the wind graze my cheeks as I sit in the back seat of my mother’s convertible trying to sing along with her as we pass through traffic.
Every person has a band that they feel a connection to, not because they evoke a sound that speaks to you as an individual, but because it spoke to your parents, generating the background noise to your childhood. For me, that band was The Beach Boys. But unlike most who share in this nostalgia, my family’s connection to the band holds a story that goes beyond the record player.
It was 1969. My uncle Freddy Glazerman, a music promoter, was on tour with the band. My mother Marcia Glazerman was just 19 years old when she received a call from my uncle requesting she go out with Mike Love, The Beach Boys front man. (Yes, my uncle was trying to pimp out his little sister with rock stars. I like to think these things often happen in families.)
“I told him no way,” my mom says when I ask her about it. “I wasn’t interested in getting involved with anyone in a band.”
However, she did agree to go to the show. From then on, my mom became, for lack of a better word, a Beach Boy groupie.
She and Love met that evening backstage after the concert. She went back to his hotel room where she, Love, and the rest of the band sat around talking and jamming until the wee hours of the morning.
“He was a perfect gentleman,” Marica says. “He said goodnight, kissed me on my cheek, and asked me to dinner for that evening.”
Her next encounter with the band was in 1971, when she was 21.
“I was staying with my cousin in Montreal. I had heard that the Beach Boys were playing, so I got a hold of Mike’s number…. He told me to meet him at the venue at 7:15 p.m. and he would bring me in.”
Now, for those who don’t know my mother, she has never been on time for anything a day in her life. Meeting a rock star would be no different.
“I was late,” she says. “Luckily it wasn’t sold out so I bought a ticket, front and centre.”
Love spotted my mom in the crowd, waved, hopped off stage, grabbed her and escorted her backstage.
Now in the ‘70s, it should come as no surprise that she, as I’m sure the majority of the audience that night, had smoked marijuana.
She decided to saunter on stage and began to play the keyboard unaware of the thousands watching her.
“Next thing I knew, the crowd was cheering me on. I was so embarrassed I ran off stage.”
Over the next two decades my mother had numerous meetings with Love, and the band throughout North America.
Her last hurrah with the band was in Miami in 1986, when I was three. She had left me with my nanny, and travelled from our condo in Fort Lauderdale to Miami to see the show performed by her old friends.
It wasn’t until the curtains closed and the after party began that my mother came to grips with her new life as a mother.
“They said Marci, you coming? For the first time I told them no, things had changed. I had a daughter now and needed to get back.”
That marked the ending of my mother’s “groupie” days, though she still attended every show they played in Winnipeg, now with me in tow.
Looking back, I know why the melodies of those Rock and Roll Hall of Famers that once filled my home with laughter and dancing for me, filled my mother with warm memories of her past.
The Beach Boys are playing the Century Casino Oct. 6.