Currant News
Herded Through The Grapevine

Previous Stories
11/98 - 12/98

Riches Remembered


(from Phil Proctor:)

To: Freditor
Subject: Riches Remembered

I went to the service yesterday at St. Dominic's in Eagle Rock, where Rich had been an altar boy. (He also went to school there). In the eulogies, one of which was movingly delivered by Jay Johnston of "Soap" fame, it was recounted how Rich, who had studied to become a pratictioner in the mental health field and met his wife, Patty, as an intern in a sanitarium (she was working there!), said this about his becoming an actor, instead: "It's a decision I'll never regret. Well, maybe only twice a week."

At the reception at his valley home afterwards, I met up with our old pal Richard Schulenberg, who told me that the first time Phil Austin and he met Rich, he was holding court at a table after a performance at a Shakespeare festival, performing all the parts in a retelling of "Dr. Strangelove" movie. His incredible vocal talents were immediately incorporated on Radio Free Oz at KPFK, where we all met and fell in love with him.

He died Christmas morn, one year to the day that his mother passed away and was one month older than I. Patty says, "Special people die on holy days."


Richard Paul Passes Away


I got this message from Mr. Proctor today. Richard Paul was a long time friend of FT from the KPFK days. He appeared on How Time Flys, Roller Maidens and on other comedy albums including Rich Little's "First Family Rides Again". In the mid-seventies he appeared on the Peter Marshall Show with David Ossman, Phil Austin and Harry Shearer as the LA All-Stars, doing a Nick Danger-like skit. Paul used to wear the paper bag and appear as Papoon during the '76 campaign with George Tirebiter. He will be sorely missed and I know many FT fans have stories about him. Let's hear some!

Dear Fred:

I received the email below yesterday. Richard was of course a long time friend, and a star who shone in several FST-related projects over the years. We'll miss him.

Oddly, I thought of Richard yesterday. Memories of him suddenly filled my mind and made me smile, as I spontaneously recalled his talent, sweetness of spirit and friendship over the many years I was blessed to know him. Such psychic events happen to me quite often; but I was shocked to return home to a phone message from his wife, Patty, announcing his death, especially since I had run into him rather frequently during the last few months at v.o. readings, and had no idea he was ailing.

Then, I read the following email from Patty Paul. Anyway, here it is:

Dear friends:

It is with great sadness that I inform you of the passing of my dear husband, Richard Paul, after an 18-month courageous battle with cancer.

He died at home on Christmas morning, 12-25-98. Please help me spread the word to his friends and colleagues ...

Services for Richard are set for 9:30 a.m. on Tuesday, December 29, 1998, at St. Dominics Church, 2002 Merton Avenue, Los Angeles (in Eagle Rock, Thomas Guide Map Page 565 A6). All are invited to the services, as well as to a reception immediately following at the Paul home.

In lieu of flowers, please consider donations in memory of Richard Paul to either or both of the following service organizations:

The Wellness Community, Foothills
200 Del Mar Blvd., Suite 118
Pasadena, CA 91105

Actors and Others for Animals
11523 Burbank Blvd.
North Hollywood, CA 91601

Please help us spread the word to others who knew Richard and appreciated his humor, positive attitude and humanitarian spirit. He will be long remembered and surely missed. Feel free to forward this e-mail.

In Richard's memory and honor, Patty Paul

** PS: I'll be at the service and wake tomorrow.

Papoon '76 Campaign Photos

(reported by Freditor on the alt.comedy.firesgn-thtre newsgroup)

Bergman's New Book:
The Official Millennium Survival Handbook


Last summer we reported in this page that Peter Bergman and his pal, David Samson, with whom he has formed a writing partnership, vacationed in the wilds of Minnesota with their families. Their new book The Official Millennium Survival Handbook is due out this week and should start hitting bookstore shelves shortly thereafter. It's already listed on It can be pre-ordered for now; it should soon be listed as available for shipping.

They'll have a web site for it soon: will promote the new book along with some of David's other books, the new Firesign album Give Me Immortailty Or Give Me Death and other goodies. New features that change on a regular basis will begin to appear in the weeks after its debut; around the first of the year, the site is scheduled to be retrofitted with the ever-popular online credit-card ordering capability.

Peter will be giving a talk about the book and all things cyber at Apple Computer next week; Apple has ordered 400 copies of the book for the occasion.


(reported by Doc Technical exclusive to FIREZINE)

Phil Austin: More Tour and Other FST News


The good news is that Rhino essentially has approved a second album, a new album. Peter and I did the meeting about a week ago. It looks as though we've got that. The details have to be ironed out. Things are kind of inching along.

We're working on the tour show right now. We've got David down here this week. We're working on the script for the show now. Hopefully it moves things up to a new level of low. Hopefully we'll do something that won't encourage really anybody to wear a red nose and nobody will know enough to shout the lines back. It will really be a completely different kind of a show.

It's about half "Anythynge You Want To" and half "Give Me Immortality" and some other little things are getting added in. In the next 3 days we really should walk away knowing what we're doing.

There won't be any shows on the East Coast in the spring, that much is for sure. What they're talking about now is Seattle, Portland, Sacramento, Santa Barbara, and San Francisco starting in February.

No move forward yet on the Eyeball hats or T-shirts. We're having a meeting tomorrow and we'll try to get some decisions on that. Everybody has started to think a little bit about merchandising in terms of the tour but ... but barely.

(reported by Freditor on the alt.comedy.firesgn-thtre newsgroup)

Funnk & Mundaigne Interview CD Nears Completion


The post production of the hilariously improvised interview your Freditor did with Phil Proctor & Melinda Peterson as Funnk & Mundaigne at Minicon 33 is just about finished. George Tirebiter recorded an 8 min. intro for it with choice interruptions from the dynamic duo at the Proctor's and has allowed Firezine to pad out the disc with the song "When I'm On The Radio With You" that F&M sang on "George Tirebiter's Radio Follies". Also included are some after words from Frank Funnk. The CD runs about 50 min. totaled. The discs are being duped right now as you read by ass editor Chris Palladino on his tax return computer and CD burner. The graphics and booklet text and credits are being looked over by Mr. Proctor for final approval. This will be Firezine's 1st all new audio release and will be offered in issue # 5 which goes to the printers soon.

Also the FT Live At Westbury Show has been DATed from the original cassette recorded by Alan Gross in 1974 and has been master burned onto 2 CDs at Holly Pines Studio in the rich cultural vacuum of Hagerstown, MD. Mr. Wiebel will again be doing the graphics between gulps of cranberry juice. Proctor & Bergman's "History Of Proctor & Bergman" recorded for Firezine has also been mastered on CD from the original DAT. Look for more details in the future and in the next issue of Firezine. So there!

(reported by Freditor on the alt.comedy.firesgn-thtre newsgroup)

Firesign Show To Be Re-Webcast December 13th


Firesign Theatre WEBCAST ALERT!

The schedule is finally straightened out. Two weeks from tonight I will re-run the August 30 "release" broadcast from my radio show. This will take up the whole 90 minutes, as it includes a complete broadcast of "Give Me Immortality Or Give Me Death."

All Four Or Five appear live and together, via the miracle of Young Tom Edison's "telephone" (remember how Ma Bell's kid, Al, stole the credit from Tom in episode 17?) -- and I am heard occasionally, trying to get a word in edgewise. Many of the characters from the new album are on the phone, and the results are hilarious. In fact, they're Not Insane!

For your datebook:

DATE: Sunday, December 13, 1998
TIME: 7 PM - 8:30 PM Eastern Standard Time (New York time)
STATION: WFHB, 91.3 and 98.1 FM in Bloomington, Indiana
WEBCAST: Available in streaming RealAudio, access it from two sites:

(reported by Richard Fish of LodesTone Media on the alt.comedy.firesgn-thtre newsgroup)

PP 99-28: FST Tour Info and Other News



On the boards... so please be patient with me; I'm in "Patience" [inside] the Ford. We've gotten raves from everyone (but "Rave") and were "Pick of the Week" in L.A. Weekly who called us "a hilarious send-up... a delight."

Thanks to all of you who have come to enjoy the show and greetings to those still to come. Please come backstage to say hello. And speaking of "Back Stage," they wrote that the show is "a good, old-fashioned gut-busting knee slapper [and] the vocal performances are strong across the board." Even the usually staid L.A. Times gushed "Gilbert is at his sly best... a rare opportunity to see this clever bonbon." (Not responsible for mixed metaphors). Call (323) 660-TKTS - Family Rates Available!

And finally, sincere thanks, too, to those of you who helped us sell out all three evenings of Tulis McCall's humorous, moving, and thought-provoking one-woman evening "Truth Be Told" at the Ventura Court. There is strong momentum to mount it soon on a major stage in town. Letcha know.

Recent Firesign gatherings are pointing the way to a '99 theatrical tour that may include 2 weeks off- B'way, 10 days in Toronto, 4 days in Montreal, 5 nights in San Francisco, 4 days in Portland and Seattle, etc... you get the idea.

(reported by Phil Proctor in Planet Proctor)

Ossman in "A Bug's Life"


Saw "A Bug's Life" yesterday. GREAT FILM! DO's presence is small but fun. He plays Cornelius, the old bug with the cane. Go see it!

(11/30/98 - Troy McFarland responds

It was pretty interesting hearing 'Catherwood' in this film. BTW, in the film, there is the message "Now with More Sugar" on one of the (I believe Animal cookie) boxes. Coincidence? I think not!)

(reported by Wayne Newitt on the alt.comedy.firesgn-thtre newsgroup)

Firesign Movie Voices #1!


Rugrats is #1 in theatres this week, with Proctor as the voice of Howard, the twin's dad, and A Bug's Life will probably be #1 next weekend, with Ossman as Cornelius (and Proctor in small voice bits).

(reported by Merlyn Leroy on the alt.comedy.firesgn-thtre newsgroup)

Preliminary Tour Info


On "The Mountain" 103.7FM in Seattle, at about 7:50AM PST, Ossman was on for a short interview. He mostly plugged the movie A Bug's Life (he & Proctor have voice roles). But he mentioned a Seattle FST '99 Tour stop in March. Tour to begin in Santa Barbara, CA. Also a stop in Portland.

(reported by Mark Time via Tiny Dr. Tim on the alt.comedy.firesgn-thtre newsgroup)

New - LodesTone FST CD Releases


The Firesign Theatre titles "The Pink Hotel Burns Down" and "Anythynge You Want To" are now in stock and ready to ship on CD!

BUT - BUT - We won't have the information in the hands of our pool of operators until a short time after Thanksgiving. And they are not yet up on our website! (soon, soon) So if you want to place an order for either of these now, do it by direct email to and include your shipping information and payment info. We'll reply-acknowledge and let you know the total and all that.

LodesTone now accepts American Express as well as VISA and MasterCard. We'll also be happy to take a check or money order, but (NOTE TO THE JOKER WHO FAXED US A CHECK ONCE) you have to snailmail those to us.

Our new catalog will be in the mail by the time you read this.

(reported by Richard Fish of LodesTone Media on the alt.comedy.firesgn-thtre newsgroup)

Proctor & Peterson Re-Mount


The Antaeus Company presents Gilbert & Sullivan's "Patience" a hilarious musical comedy about 2 rival poets - one a fraud, the other madly sincere - a milkmaid searching for the meaning of love - a mob of rapturous and amorous Dragoons - a wild scrambl e to find "the one true emotion in this whirlpool of grasping greed!"

Patience - Postcard Image Due to the success of its summer presentation The Anteus Company has expanded its previous production to include more songs and fun. "Patience" will be opening the 7th of November and running at least until December 20th at the brand spanking new [Inside] the Ford at the John Anson Ford Amphitheatre 2580 Cahuenga Blvd. East in Hollywood, CA. with performances given Thursdays thru Saturdays at 8 pm with Saturday and Sunday matinees at 2 pm. Tickets are $20 with group rates available.

This rare opportunity to hear Phil Proctor sing and perform as he did on Broadway and the repertory stages of NY and on the road in the 60's is directed by Maryedith Burrell with musical direction by Jan Powell. Besides Mr. Proctor and his lovely and multi-talented companion Melinda Peterson, you will get to witness the fine performances of the rest of the Antaeus Company including John Apicella, Anna Lee Byrd, Kenneth Danzinger, Nike Doukas, Luck Hari, Jeremy Lawrence, Anna Mathias, Janelin Steiniger, Marcelo Tubert, Larry Braman, Emily Chase, John DeMita, Terry J. Evans, Stuart W. Howard, Robert Machray, Laura Otis, Karen Stone, Cheryl Tyre-Smith, Mark Valera.

To reserve seats you can call (323) 660-TKTS.

For more information click to the Antaeus Comnpany web site: