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If Ever There Was An OMG Moment In My Life-This Is It.

So...Friday I got an email. It looked something like this

Hi Todd,

Could you please get back to me via phone or email by 12 noon PST on Monday, August 4th, regarding the Live Nation Rock N Roll Fantasy Camp Sweepstakes you entered?


And I thought...hmm. That's interesting. Well, truth be told I didn't even open the email until Sunday. It sat in my pile of 'is this spam or not?'

I opened it and found the above question. Along with a name, email address, fax, mailing address of someone at LiveNation.

Well I remembered entering the sweepstakes (vaguely). So, I emailed her back. And just to be sure, called and left vm with the number provided.

At best, I was thinking..OK, I've won the consolation prize....Kip Winger's new CD or something. Cool. I still have my eBay account. All's well.

So, I called again today. And she answered.

And I told her who I was. She said...'Oh hey. I was just about to call you. Are you familiar with the Rock and Roll Fantasy Camp Sweepstakes you entered?" (and here's where I was expecting the Winger discography)... I said 'oh yeah. I remember (mostly).'

She pauses for a beat..."You won the whole thing. You're our grand prize winner."

Excuse me?? Are you serious? Did someone put you up to this?

Despite my inquest, she stuck to her story. OK, lady, when do I have to give you my credit card number?

But she just starts right on in to the itinerary...'We'll fly you from Columbus to Phoenix...put you up in a hotel that night and the next night you'll be on the road with the band for the next 5 days and we'll fly you home from LA on the last day."

You ever been driving and you sorta hear the radio station...enough to make out what the song is, but only just barely? That's kind of how the afternoon went from there. I heard...' flights....Slash Signature Guitar....$500 GuitarCenter Gift card...' but it was all kind of Pink Floydian through a haze of 'are you sh*tting me??

As I read the affidavit (an actual legal document that I had to get notarized)...I realized it was all real.

I found the contest looks like this:

ENTER NOW to win a 5 day Platinum Rock Star Tour Package from Rock 'n' Roll Fantasy Camp and live life like the rock star you've always wanted to be!

This package brings you out on the road with Rock 'n' Roll Fantasy Camp for 5 days taking part in the scheduled camps on event days, and hanging out like a rock star on your day off. You will travel on the tour bus, stay at the hotels, and even receive a per diem for meals. Plus, we recognize you’ll want some gear so we’re throwing in a Slash Signature Epiphone Les Paul ( click on the 'SLASH' button on the right-todd) and a $500 Guitar Center Gift Card!Enter now for your chance to hit the road and live life like a rock star!

ROCK 'N' ROLL FANTASY CAMP The Ultimate Music experience!


FEATURING…Gilby Clarke (Guns n' Roses)Chris Slade (AC/DC, The Firm)Earl Slick (David Bowie/John Lennon)Dave Ellefson (Megadeth)Glenn Hughes (Deep Purple/Black Sabbath)Mark Slaughter (Slaughter)Elliot Easton (The Cars)Mark Hudson (Aerosmith/Grammy Award Winning Songwriter)Kip Winger (Winger)ExtremeKing’s X...

PLAY LIVE AT...Marquee Theatre - PhoenixHard Rock - Las VegasThe Fillmore - San FranciscoHouse of Blues - Sunset Strip Hollywood*no musical experience required

And here's about the point I freaked out (on the inside).'s the deal...I was happy enough with the Les Paul and the gift card...but dude....backstage/insider/tourbus access on something like this is nuts. shock moment I had questions....

do I need to bring gear?(no, but Zack who registered me for the camp said I might want to use the $500 gift card to get a guitar and set of bongos to bring...duly noted)

Can I bring my camera? Still? Video? ..."Dude..yeah. Hell yeah. You're stuff's gonna be with you back stage, bring it...send us a copy of it when you're're a filmmaker? Cool. Yeah. Bring that'll get some good footage." And then to furter emphasize that contact at LiveNation emailed me the following: You are on the Platinum Tour Package, and cameras/video cameras are allowed. After all, you’re with the band!

I'm with the band.

And that's when it sunk in. It should have sunk in when the dude from the camp was on the phone with me telling me about meeting up with the tour manager and then being part of the tour....or when he said since I was going to 4 different 1 day camps I could pick a different counselor each time. Or when he said the LA show was gonna be nuts and full of hollywood types (the kid from 2 and half men, some dude from ColdCase Files...some chick from Californication....Kenny Aranoff).

But no.

It kicked in when I saw it in black and white.

I'm not gonna lie...when the incarnation of Devilcake that I was in died off and was reborn sans chubby keyboard player....I convinced myself that it was for the best and that rocking out on stage just wasn't my thing. And maybe that's true.

But this is a whole different level of rocking out on stage. Dude. I'm gonna PLAY the Hard Rock Cafe......I'm gonna PLAY the Fillmore....the Mother F***in' Fillmore!!! I'm PLAYING House of Blues on the Sunset Strip.

Yeah, I would sure as sh*t say that dreams come true. Because if this whole thing isn't a dream, I don't know what is.

And the other thing that I'm SUPER jazzed about?? The filming opportunities. This is gonna be my one-shot weird friggin' road trip movie. But mostly I'm jazzed about being a rock star. At least for 5 days.

Seriously. This is blowing my mind.

I couldn't make this stuff up.


Anonymous said…
I know you don't know me, but Wow!!! Very cool story and congratulations!!! Apparently it's not a dream huh? :0) How exciting! If you have a chance to grab Kip Winger as your it! He is an AMAZING artist & composer. I'm a huge fan of his so when all is said and done (or even now) feel free to share your story on my website There is a message board there as well.

Best of luck to you! Have great time and enjoy every single solitary moment :0) I have no doubt you will :0)
Darrin said…
Nice to see all the gory details and some additional info. We've talked about this extensively already, so I'll just leave with my usual:

Todd S. said…
Yes...still seems dreamy, but clearly not a dream. I just got my 'itinerary' today. It's all very cool..and very very surreal.

I will probably pick Kip for one of the camps...he's actually got a few of the more classic-y classic rock tunes. Plus, it's 4 one-day camps I'll be going to, so, the idea would be to get a different 'counselor' each time.

I tell you this...I'm getting bruises from all the pinching I've been doing :-)
Ian Stewart said…
dude, tell kip winger i said hi.

Todd S. said…
::: said...
dude, tell kip winger i said hi.


You got it, man. Pick out your favorite Winger album and I'll get him to sign it. :-)
Anonymous said…
Thanks for this amazing blog. The real fantasy is yet to come!! Kevin from REO Speedwagon showed up unannounced at the New York Camp on Monday. And Bruce (Yes, THE BOSS!!!) was spotted outside of the venue. All I can say is get some sleep now while you can :)


fuquinay said…
Dude, tell him I said hi! Seriously, I went to the Rock Camp as a reporter on Saturday and blogged about it here Lucky. Seriously.

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