Touring with the Idols

I have written previously about my beautiful sister-in-law, Suzanne. She’s a lovely and amazing woman who adores her brothers.

Bill, Mark, Suzanne and Jim -- Cramers all of them...

Bill, Mark, Suzanne and Jim — Cramers all of them…

For most of the year, Suzanne lives and works in a sweet quiet little California tourist town at a Whole Body Vibe studio where she helps clients realize their full health potential and sensible weight loss. She also keeps herself in excellent health with organic eating and exercise — I’m sure she’ll never have to take any blood pressure medicine OR cholesterol medicine! She’s just a beautiful lady with a great perspective on life. Love is written all over her face.

And did I mention that she’s also a jewelry designer? Suzanne creates some gorgeous gold and silver “roadie shackles” that are for sale at her website — so cool for folks who can’t get enough rock and roll jewelry.

And then summer rolls around and her life does a 180. For the past several years, Suzanne has been the primary rigger on the American Idol Live tours. The rigger is the person who travels with the musical entourage and rigs up the motors which run the lights on the grid rack way up above the audience, way up over the stage.

She easily travels thousands of miles each summer, rigging up the shows, and then tearing them down and packing them away to be loaded on buses and hauled to the next venue down the road.

Suzanne has been doing this for nearly thirty years, traveling with many famous people and bands: Bonnie Raitt, Beyonce, Aerosmith, and Gloria Estefan to name just a few.

What an interesting life for this sister of a goose!

The fun thing is that when Suzanne comes to town with her friends and the American Idols, she arranges for her family to join her at the concert AND backstage! Imagine Mother Goose backstage at an American Idol concert!

Yes, it happened!

We arrived early at the Allstate Arena VIP parking lot on Monday night in our Goosemobile. Regular fans and curious onlookers, of course, wondered who we were as we pulled up to the gated entrance.

I spoke right up, “We have VIP parking for the concert tonight. My name is on your list!”

The parking lot security agent looked at Mother Goose. He seemed to recognize me, but still it’s his job to ask, “And your name is…?” When I told him, he was gracious and truly delighted to see me with my daughters.

“Ok,” he explained. “Just pull up there to that entrance by the tour buses and park in that lot. Your entrance door is behind the buses.” We happily followed his directions, walked behind the buses and entered the arena through an unmarked door. We were immediately confronted with a pack of security personnel who apparently hadn’t been informed that Mother Goose would be at the concert this evening.

“Who are you? How did you get in here? Were you on the bus? Who let you in? Why are you just standing there flapping your wings and stomping your rubbery feet?”

Graciously and with my best southern belle accent, I explained that my sister, Suzanne, would be meeting us and she’s very important too. As they surrounded us, I quickly dialed up Suzanne’s number and waited for her to rescue us. And of course, she did. Because she’s much more important and famous than Mother Goose. The security people just melted away when Suzanne showed up on the scene. After loving greetings, she hustled us away to another building, past more curious gapers with their mouths hanging open in wonderment of who we might be.

As we walked to the building where the crew and idols would be enjoying their delicious catered dinner of a freshly roasted pig, Suzanne supplied us with special backstage passes to stick onto our thighs and wrap around our wrists. We were now officially VIPs. With all the splendid and special benefits of those who know that status…

We ate hurriedly and happily.

Suzanne introduced us to her friends and explained that even though the rigging for the show was complete, she has an additional behind the scenes job for this tour. She assists in the “quick change” area during the show — the young singers change their costumes several times in the course of the evening, and she helps them to get into their outfits, attaches them to their lovely jewelry and makes sure they get the right shoes and cowboy boots on their precious idol feet.

As you can already imagine, we gasped in wonder as she showed us the place where these talented young singers change their clothes!

Wardrobe of the American Idols...

Wardrobe of the American Idols…

Jewelry of the American Idols...

Jewelry of the American Idols…

With eyes full of wonder and awe, we followed dear Suzanne to the place where we would be sitting to watch the concert. Of course, it was in the center of the arena in a fenced-in area reserved for those who are pre-designated as VIPs…

We hugged her mightily as she left to dress the ladies and then we waited with great joy and anticipation for the show to start. We entertained ourselves with taking many silly pictures. Because we are VIPs…



And then what FUN when the concert started and all those really talented singers entertained us for a couple of hours! With all of their costume changes in place. And there were no wardrobe malfunctions to speak of…

Great light show!  Lasers galore!

Great light show! Lasers galore!

Miss Kree

Miss Kree

Miss Kree up close and personal on the big screen.

Miss Kree up close and personal on the big screen.

Miss Candice, the winner of American Idol 2013.  Oh man, can this woman sing!

Miss Candice, the winner of American Idol 2013. Oh man, can this woman sing!

Afterwards, with stars in our eyes, we were kindly and graciously escorted away from the masses to that private secret exit by Suzanne’s dear friend, Bobby. A fine Southern gentleman from Knoxville, Tennessee, he walked us out past the security personnel again while the eyes of regular fans watched us with great envy. Of course, Mother Goose easily slipped back into her southern belle mode in talking with Bobby much to the great chagrin of her daughters.

“Mom,” Jessi and AnnaRose asked, “Who do you think you are?”

“Well, I’m a VIP, of course, and so are you, my dears!”

A huge THANK YOOOOOOU to my dear Suzanne for making us the VIPs for the evening! You are my idol, dear!

Blessings to y’all from Mother Goose!

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October 2022