By the Way

Rick Springfield announce summer tour, talks 'True Detective'

By JEFF CLARK

jclark@sunherald.com

Musician/actor Rick Springfield recently announced that he will be embarking on a 29-city tour this summer with acts that include Loverboy, 38 Special and Night Ranger.

The tour will land at Bold Sphere Music at Champions Square in New Orleans on June 23. Loverboy and Night Ranger will open the show.

Perhaps best known for his turn as Dr. Noah Drake on ABC’s “General Hospital” and his 1981 album “Working Class Dog” and 1983’s “Living in Oz,” Springfield has been enjoying somewhat of a renaissance in recent years thanks to a part in Foo Fighters' Dave Grohl’s documentary “Sound City” and a recurring role on Showtime’s “Californication.”

But it was the 2012 documentary “Affair of the Heart,” a look at Springfield’s longstanding relationship with his fans, that showed his enduring relevancy.

In an interview with the Sun Herald, Springfield discussed his self-proclaimed “creepy” role on “True Detective," his admiration for director Jonathan Demme’s work and  a remake of his most famous song.

Q: You have received really good reviews for your portrayal of Dr. Irving Pitlor on Season Two of "True Detective." You were pretty much unrecognizable. Was that the goal of showrunner Nic Pizzolatto -- to make you unrecognizable?

A: The look of the character was pretty well described in the script, even down to the bad hair plugs and fake tan but it helped the believability I think that it didn’t look like me. I’m creepy but not THAT creepy. The makeup and hair people had a ball with it as you can probably tell from the end result.

Q: You took a pretty good beating from Colin Ferrell. You OK?

A: I’m good. I can take a punch. Thanks for asking.

Q: In all seriousness, what was your "True Detective" experience like?

A: It was pretty great. Everyone was very friendly with no ego stuff so I could just focus on the part. It's all A grade stuff and everyone involved has seen a few rodeos before so it was all about getting the best performances.

Q: Some say your character on "Californication" was a "hedonistic version" of yourself. Did you enjoy playing that character?

A: Ah, lets see. I got to run around half-naked, have pretend-sex with pretend-strippers, treat everyone like jerks (totally guilt free) and have a few funny lines. What’s not to like? Yes it was a blast. Again, top notch cast, crew, production, writer.

Q: In "Ricki and the Flash," you got to work with Jonathan Demme. What's your favorite Demme film or films?

A: Well, Jonathan Demme is a supremely gifted director and an outstanding human being and his work makes it tough to pick favorites. “Silence of the Lambs” was amazing. I loved "Stop Making Sense" as well. Jonathan knows what live music looks like on film because he’s shot several documentaries as well as the Talking Heads thing so we were definitely in great hands. He wanted all the music played and sung live and there’s no energy like ‘live’ energy. It shows in the movies musical sections I think.

Q: What was it like being in a fictional band with Meryl Streep?

A: It didn’t suck. The band actually totally kicked ass. And Meryl brought a really unique character and energy to the stage with Ricki. It was pretty much all fun from the word go once we got the thing up on its feet. By the first day we knew it was going to be good and the band could sell the fact that they were supposed to have been together for six years.

Q: Last year, Mary Lambert recorded a very introspective version of "Jessie's Girl.”  Any thoughts on her cover?

A: I dug it. Mary definitely sold the lyrics as far as I was concerned. It was a nice surprise to hear it sung as a ballad and be approached with such delicacy. It difficult for me to re-imagine the song cause it's been with me for so long, so I like it when someone takes another shot.

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