Monday, February 18, 2008

Scott Halpin

Judy Farnsworth e-mailed to let me know that Scott Halpin passed away on February 9.

His death made me think about momentary fame and its benefits--or consequences.

Very briefly, Scott Halpin went onstage with The Who and played drums for three songs with the band during a concert in San Francisco after Keith Moon passed out and was unable to continue. Halpin was nineteen years old.

What does a moment like this do to your life? Is it something that you always remember fondly, or does it make the ongoing real world seem lifeless in comparison? And does the memory sour with time, or does it live undiminished in your mind?

I assume that answer varies depending on the character of the person involved, but it seems like Halpin handled it very well. Here's an excerpt from the Wikipedia entry:
Scot Halpin was born February 2, 1954, to Elizabeth and Richard Halpin, of Muscatine, Iowa. He grew up in Muscatine, showing early promise as a visual artist and musician. In the early seventies, he moved to California, where he met his wife and life-time collaborator Robin Young at City College in 1978. Halpin went on to earn an MA in Interdisciplinary Arts from San Francisco State University.

Halpin became composer in residence at the
Headlands Center for the Arts, in Sausalito, California, and played with a number of bands over the years, including: The Sponges, Funhouse, Folklore, SnakeDoctor and Plank Road. While on the West Coast, Halpin and his wife managed a New Wave punk rock night club, The Roosevelt, before moving to Indiana in 1995 to pursue opportunities in the visual arts.

From 1995 until his death, Halpin resided in Bloomington, Indiana, with his wife Robin and son, James.

Maybe his fame only lasted for fifteen minutes, but Halpin seems to have lived a satisfying and successful life.

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