Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Fred Wolf

Had dinner last night at Fish in Monkstown with fabled Hollywood animator Fred Wolf. Fred lives in Ireland for about 3 months every year - the balance is spent in Laurel Canyon near LA. He's the man behind "The Flintstones", "Teenage Ninja Mutant Turtles", the Frosties tiger etc.

While I was meeting him on art business, he currently has a show in the OSB Gallery, he is usually more than keen to talk about his encounters with Franz Zappa, Ringo Starr and various other luminaries. He told of being on his way to London to meet the Beatles to discuss the "Yellow Submarine" project when he met a woman on the plane and went off with her for a few weeks and lost the project as a result. He was only mildly regretful about this.

He was particularly friendly with singer Harry Nillsson and told a funny story about his first record. While Fred was living in Malibu, Nillsson sent Fred a copy of it and he and his wife Maya played it non-stop for weeks. They left it out in the sun one day and the record became warped and the sound distorted. Maya conceived the notion of putting it in the over to heat it up and then press it back into shape. This was spectacularly unsuccessful, the record warped even more. In a fit of pique Fred went out on the balcony and heaved it into the ocean below. A couple of days later Nillsson came to visit. Being unsure of the location of Fred's house (you know Malibu - all the backs look the same) he made his way around the front, to the ocean side, and walked along the beach looking for some familiar sign. As he walked by the edge of the ocean he came upon Fred's discarded copy of his record. Picking it up he resumed his search and eventually found Fred's house. When Fred answered the door he presented him with the record saying "I think this is yours". Fred, who is a gentlemanly type, was mortified. Their relationship must have recovered as they went on to make "The Point" together.