When I got back into the ballroom all the lights and cameras had found a home and the cables were miraculously tidy.
We had a couple of hours to relax and change into the show gear, there was a cocktail 'do' before the show and a cocktail 'do' after the show, they certainly made sure that the people got their money's worth ($3,000 a seat for the floor and $2,000 a seat for the balcony).
As we entered the room for the first cocktail session we passed by Dr John, Steve did an album with him years ago and as we were so close I tapped on his shoulder. Dr John looked amazing; purple suit, feathers and things in his hat, a walking stick with things carved all over it.
I couldn’t understand a word he said: Apparently he said "The Deacon!" and nudged somebody saying "this man plays great guitar, he did an album of mine" or something like that. The man was made up that Dr John remembered him and will treasure that moment.
We don’t drink so we did a tour of the room, winding our way thru all the frocks and bow ties then headed upstairs to our allocated table.
The man and I were on the balcony for the dinner....which was great cos I could look down and do star spotting. On our table were two guys from Wall Street, a lady from ASCAP who was quite important I think. There was a couple from the UK who were huge Neil Diamond fans and before long they and the two Wall Streeter's were 'Neil' spotting from on high. The couple were from Durham and very nice although she was quite excitable. Neil actually knows them as they follow him everywhere which was pretty cool during his performance as he sang up to them when he recognized their shouts of adulation.
We managed to have most of the meal before the runner came up to get us, they wanted Steve downstairs . We joined Alice in his parlor.......a small area partitioned off by screens with a couple of chairs, a table and a mirror, the rest of the band were milling in and out in their glitter clad finery, we took some pics and jokes flew round like confetti.
It was nearly time for them to go on, so we all wound our way out into the crowd. Steve needs careful guidance in dark rooms so we took our time to get to the holding area.
The kitchen was the holding area: Waiters were banging through the swing doors as we ended up waiting for about 20 minutes, some got really brave and asked to have their photo taken with the band.
This was a musically historic occasion and the staff of The Warldorf knew that.
Just as she was about to be announced, Bette Midler was hustled through the back of the kitchen to the swing doors, she was inducting Darlene Love ahead of the bands three songs. She stood right by Steve who had worked closely with her on the movie 'The Rose' in the 80's, he said "Bette it's Steve" but woosh she was gone through the doors and on to the stage.
More of the man and Bette Midler at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction in the next part.