BRENTFORD, LONDON, UK (ANS) -- It was a rather extraordinary situation for me when, back in 1978, I had just completed Rick Wakeman, the Caped Crusader, the official biography of my old friend, Rick Wakeman, the former keyboardist with YES, and a talented musician who has been named by many critics as the “world’s greatest rock keyboard player.”
Cover of the book
The book has since just been reissued with the new title of Caped Crusader – Rick Wakeman in the 1970s by the Gonzo Media Group in the UK.
At Rick’s request, I had approached Elton John’s publicist to see if Elton would write the foreword. To start with, the request was turned down by the publicist, but then to my great relief, I got a call from her that Elton (now Sir Elton) had agreed to do so.
Now came the tricky part. The publisher wanted a picture of Rick, Elton and I, to go on the back cover of the book and a photographer was hired to take some photos before a soccer game between Brentford FC and Watford FC.
Rick was then a big fan of Brentford and Elton was, at the time, chairman of Watford.
Brentford FC Logo
When I arrived at Griffin Park, the Brentford ground close to Heathrow Airport, Rick told me that a problem had arisen. One of the bosses of Brentford didn’t want any pictures of rock stars taken at the ground as he felt it “lowered” the standards of the club.
So, when we were all ready for the photos to be taken, someone was sent to divert this man’s attention, and we rushed into a side room, posed for the pictures, and then emerged before he had discovered what we had done.
The secret picture of (Sir) Elton John (left) Dan Wooding and Rick Wakeman
Sure enough, one of the pictures went on the back cover of the book and Rick has continued crusading, but not now just for rock music, but for the Lord as well, and he has done two USA tours with me to help raise funds for ASSIST Ministries (www.assistnews.net).
Wakeman has also produced over 100 solo albums that have sold more than 50 million copies.
By the way, I am still trying to figure out how these two British rock celebrities “lowered” the standards of this humble soccer club that is now in the npower League 1 in England and, not surprisingly, Rick Wakeman has now switched his support from Brenford to Manchester City, who recently won the English Barclays Premier League title.
Dan Wooding, 71, is an award winning British journalist now living in Southern California with his wife Norma, to whom he has been married for 48 years. They have two sons, Andrew and Peter, and six grandchildren who all live in the UK. He is the founder and international director of ASSIST (Aid to Special Saints in Strategic Times) and the ASSIST News Service (ANS) and was, for ten years, a commentator, on the UPI Radio Network in Washington, DC. He hosts the weekly “Front Page Radio” show on the KWVE Radio Network in Southern California and which is also carried throughout the United States. The program is also aired in Great Britain on Calvary Chapel Radio UK and also in Belize and South Africa. Besides this, Wooding is a host for His Channel Live, which is carried via the Internet to some 192 countries and also provides a regular commentary for Worship Life Radio on KWVE. You can follow Dan Wooding on Facebook under his name there or at ASSIST News Service. Dan has recently received two top media awards -- the "Passion for the Persecuted" award from Open Doors US, and one of the top "Newsmakers of 2011" from Plain Truth magazine. He is the author of some 44 books, the latest of which is "Caped Crusader: Rick Wakeman in the 1970s." To order a copy, go to: http://www.amazon.com/CAPED-CRUSADER-Rick-Wakeman-1970s/dp/1908728302/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1335474883&sr=1-1 . Wooding, who was born in Nigeria of British missionary parents, has also recently released his first novel “Red Dagger” which is available this link.