KIM CARNES RULES L.A. CONCERT,
WITH GREG BARNHILL, MATRACA BERG
by Mimi Brickmeyer, staff reporter.
[August 3, 2003]
Twenty-two years after the release of "Bette Davis Eyes", Kim-crazed fans
traveled 1000s of miles from around the world to glimpse singer/songwriter
Kim Carnes, who performed at the Valley
Cultural Center in Woodland Hills, CA, on July 27, 2003.
Country crooners Greg Barnhill
and Matraca Berg also appeared, performing both solo and duets with Carnes.
Best known for her Grammy
Award-winning 1981 hit single, "Bette Davis Eyes" (from her Mistaken
Identity lp), Carnes's nearly four-decade showbiz career began with
a 1965 acting gig on TV's Patty Duke Show, followed by a deluge of critically-praised
albums released both before and after Mistaken
Identity, songwriting (often with longtime hubby, David "Davo" Ellingson)
for Kenny Rogers, Frank Sinatra, Barbra Streisand, and Neil Diamond --
among many others! -- plus 1000s of live performances at venues big and
And Carnes continues to draw
1000s of Kim-heads from around the world! In an exclusive email exchange, Valley
Cultural Center CEO Jim Kinsey informed the Hollywood Investigator
that he estimates that up to 6,000 fans attended Carnes's 2003 appearance
-- bringing photos, CDs -- and even vinyl albums from the 1970s! -- desperately
hoping for Carnes to sign them!
The Hollywood Investigator
has also learned from well-placed sources that during Carnes's 2000 appearance
at the Valley Cultural
Center, a female fan from the Brazilian
Kim Carnes Fan Club flew in from that sunny but distant land -- just
to see Carnes! This so moved Carnes that, after the concert, she
greeted the lucky Latina Kim-maniac backstage!
FACTS: In a 1980s interview, Kim Carnes said that one of her favorite
films is Black
Orpheus (1959) -- set during Rio de Janeiro's Carnival! The film
also provided inspiration for Carnes's 1981 music video, "Draw of the Cards"
(by "Bette Davis Eyes" director Russell Mulcahy).
But for all the Kim-crazy
excitement of the 2000 concert, the 2003 concert proved even bigger, as
Carnes opened with "Break the Rules Tonight" (also from Mistaken
Identity), then shared numbers with country's Greg Barnhill, who also
Although born in New Orleans,
today Greg Barnhill, like Carnes,
lives in Nashville. His songwriting includes the Grammy-nominated
"Walkaway Joe," recorded by Trisha Yearwood and Don Henley in 1993.
Also like Carnes, Barnhill
has written and sung for film & TV soundtracks, and turned his towering
talents to acting -- he appeared in "American Duet," a musical by playwrights
Marcus Hummon and Bill Feheely.
(After the concert, Barnhill-heads
barnstormed the tent selling his newest CD, No Chaser, thrilled at the
to get it autographed!)
But it was Carnes who ruled
the evening, as oceans of Kim-aholics begged for requests throughout the
concert. Carnes tried to please all, but when one fan shouted for
"Crazy in the Night" (from Carnes's 1985 Barking
at Airplanes album), Carnes apologized, explaining that the band didn't
"I'll do it next year," Carnes
promised, "when the band's had a chance to learn it." Then, trying
to soothe the fan's heartbreak, Carnes sung the first few verses without
musical accompaniment -- and appreciative Kim-heads of all ages roared
After Barnhill, Matraca Berg performed with Kim, and also performed solo!
Born in Nashville, Matraca
Berg is the daughter of country songwriter and session singer Icee
In 1983 Matraca Berg's "Faking
Love" (co-written with Bobby Braddock) was recorded by T.G. Sheppard &
Karen Brooks -- and became a #1 hit!
In 1990 Berg released her
first album, Lying
to the Moon, with the Top 40 hit "Baby, Walk On." She followed
with Bittersweet Surrender (1991) and The
Speed of Grace (1993).
Berg's also written songs
for Trisha Yearwood, Suzy Bogguss, Reba McEntire, and Pam Tillis.
At one point during the concert,
Berg had a special treat for Berg-heads! She called out for her hubby
from backstage, who took over Barnhill's stool
while Barnhill slipped backstage
-- and Berg & hubby performed duets!
But then tragedy nearly marred
When Berg & hubby were
done, hubby left, and Berg shouted for Barnhill to return -- but he didn't! Carnes joined in calling for Barnhill's return -- but still he did not
return! Tension mounted as anxious Barnhill-heads worried over the
fate of their idol!
Finally, after six seconds
-- that seemed like eight! -- Barnhill rushed back out on stage -- his
mouth full of food!
"Sorry!" said Barnhill. "There's a lot of good food back there!"
"Yes, that's true," Carnes
told a relieved audience. "There is a lot of good food back there!"
Although the concert began
at 6 pm, Woodland Hills -- nestled in the infamously white-hot San Fernando
Valley! -- was still sweltering from the fiery July afternoon California
sun, and Carnes & company drank often to keep cool! Yet despite
the torrid temperatures, the concert lasted till well past 8 pm!
"I'm glad they scheduled
us for six," Carnes told the audience. "Last time we started
at four. This is so much better."
Yet despite all the previous
Kim-inspired ecstasy, it was a mixture of joy and grief that gripped the
audience when Carnes began singing "Bette Davis Eyes," as longtime Kim-watchers
knew that her signature song signaled the end of the concert.
Afterwards, as Barnhill-heads
barnstormed Barnhill's Barnhill CD tent, and Berg-heads did whatever Berg-heads
are wont to do, oceans of Kim-heads trounced onstage to get backstage for
autographs and photo ops with their idol -- and Carnes complied with their
requests! Everyone wanted to pose with Kim -- even her longtime friends!
And not only did Kim-heads
get to see Carnes in the flesh -- they got an inside peek at all the good
food provided by the Valley
One Kim-giddy fan -- who
flew in from Kansas City just to see Carnes! -- told the Hollywood Investigator
-- in an exclusive statement! -- that meeting
Carnes was the most exciting event of her life, gushing, "It was wonderful
to talk to her. She is a wonderful person. Very nice. I loved the music and the atmosphere was great!"
Another Kim-head endured
a grueling 100 mile roundtrip drive, bubbling, "This was my third time
to drive to Woodland Hills to see Kim. I loved it! I met Kim
each time she's performed there! She's beyond friendly! I have
been very impressed as to her humility!"
Shockingly, this Kim-head
is also a Berg-head! "I've liked Matraca since her first release. At the first concert I saw of Kim's, Kim made mention of Matraca as the
writer of a song she was going to do. I was in front, and did a 'woo
hoo.' Kim looked at me and said, 'So you know Matraca? Great!' "
Even more shockingly, this
Kim-head/Berg-head is also a Barnhill-head! "When I saw Kim in 2000,
it was my first exposure to Greg Barnhill. He's great live -- and
his guitar playing is awe inspiring to me!"
* Tragedy Mars the Concert
But despite all the good
food, much of the Kim-O-Ramic joy was shattered by grief and despair --
because infinite numbers of Kim-maniacs were unable to attend the concert!
In the weeks before the concert,
high-level traffic burned the internet with the heart-rending missives
of Kim-heads wracked with crippling agony over the darkly foreboding prospect
of not seeing Carnes in Woodland Hills!
One Brazilian Kim fan --
who, unlike his lucky compatriot, has yet to see Carnes even once! -- sent
desperate pleas over the Kim
Carnes fan listserv begging fellow Kim-heads to pass his note to Carnes! (The Hollywood Investigator's vastly huge family of readers will be relieved
to learn that sources indicate that Carnes likely did receive the note!)
To soothe the grief of Kim-heads
unable to attend the 2003 concert, the Hollywood Investigator offers this exclusive insider backstage candid peek of Kim Carnes looking at the good food provided
by the Valley Cultural Center.
You will not see this in
the National Enquirer -- or in any other major media outlet! Only
the Hollywood Investigator is able to provide this "you are there" opportunity
to our hugely vast family of readers!
France was another nation
torn between Kim-mania and Kim-grief, as a French listserv member wrote:
"You see, nobody want us, we are all alone and far away!" Perhaps
in a desperate attempt to reach across the Atlantic, she attached an image
of her electric guitar to her email. It is not believed that this
image was ever seen by Carnes.
But the Hollywood Investigator
has seen this image! -- and can report that this Gallic guitar-head's electric
guitar is white.
FACTS: "Carnes" is a French name! Kim Carnes's dad -- who had the
same name! -- was a Los Angeles-based corporate attorney. Perhaps
in honor of her heritage, Carnes went on to sing "Paris Without You," which
appears on her St.
Vincent's Court (1979) album.
* Kim Carnes's Message to Fans
Last April, the Hollywood
Investigator reported exclusively on Kim
Carnes latest CD project -- which she is self-producing in Nashville! The Hollywood Investigator has now exclusively learned that the CD is still in development -- and that Carnes has a very
special message to her fans!
"She said she was going to
finish the album," reports a source close to Carnes, "and then figure out
how to distribute it. Then [Carnes] said: SPREAD THE WORD ABOUT THE
The Hollywood Investigator
will continue to stay on top of breaking developments as this story unfolds!
Copyright 2003 by HollywoodInvestigator.com.
|Mimi Brickmeyer is a Los Angeles based entertainment reporter who has extensively investigated Hollywood's biggest celebrities. Read about her adventures in tabloid journalism in Hollywood Witches.