A Visit to the Future with Buzz Constantly

Posted: August 9, 2011 in 21st Century, Rock n Roll

Buzz Constantly (Ric Whitman), at home in Victoria, August 2011. Photo by Thomas Whitman

As I said in a previous blog entry, Buzz has finally been located living in Victoria BC, and yesterday I rode the boat (no, not “rowed the boat”!) over to Vancouver Island to visit. While I was on the ferry, his son Thomas iPhoned me to let me know that Buzz/Ric had just started a new job house painting. Although he most likely wouldn’t be off work until midday, I was more than welcome to hang out at Thomas’s house, which he shared with his mom, Jenny (Jenny I fondly remembered from 30 years ago, and who really hadn’t changed all that much except for some wrinkles which most of us have also accumulated — she is still a laugh & a half!). This I did, and spent a delightful afternoon drinking beer and sampling herb superb. Ric finally got off work and arranged to meet Thomas & me for a Chinese buffet at Raymond’s in Saanich.

I hadn’t seen Ric in about ten years. The last time I visited him in another part of Victoria, I had just bought a 2001 PT Cruiser — ten years later, I still drive it, and of course he still lives in Victoria. It was fantastic to hang out with him once again, and as Leslie remarked on Facebook, he had aged well. He’s now 60 (like me and Art), but as far as I could tell, it was the “same old Buzz”. As could be expected, we reminisced about old times playing together in Sparkling Apple, and how the music scene had changed dramatically since then. He loves the blues, classic rock (a la Paul Rodgers, Robin Trower and Jeff Beck), and really loved Amy Winehouse’s vocal style.

I told him about our Sparkling Apple Greatest Hits project, and he was excited about it. To this end, Kevin has written a song for which Ric intends to write lyrics, and later contribute lead vocals. I sincerely hope this transpires.

We later drove over to Ric’s funky old house in Saanich, with a huge garden that evoked shabby gentility of a bygone age. (Whoa, how’s that for prose?) After shooting the breeze for a while longer, it was unfortunately time for me to catch the last ferry home (prior commitments wouldn’t allow me to stay overnight). I bid my rediscovered friends happy trails, and hopefully it won’t be another ten years until I see them again.

Postscript: Thomas has supplied Ric with a laptop computer, so once he’s set up with email and a Facebook account, we may well be joined by Buzz Constantly in the 21st Century!

Thomas Whitman and his dad, Ric Whitman. Photo by Colin Hartridge

Buzz Constantly and Captain Maniac 2011. Photo by Thomas Whitman

Buzz Constantly and Captain Maniac 2011. Photo by Thomas Whitman

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Comments
  1. Anonymous says:

    Awesome to see ya again Colin look forward to the next visit!

  2. Chris says:

    Fantastic to see these photos! Ric looks great and it’s great to hear he may get involved in the ‘project’. Thanks for making the trip and tracking him down.

  3. awesome when is the greatest hits and are you gonna u tube and facebook it, with the right video hey may the greatest will be a greatest hit. And don’t forget the 40s anniversary concert have to have one of those, get it on Amazon

  4. jim (WOODY) woodburne says:

    Ole buzz hasn’t changed a bit he’s looking great. Hope To see him again soon.

  5. Anonymous says:

    I remember Buzz played in another band in the Big-O hotel after he left Sparkling Apple, I would walk by the stage in between songs and say, Don’t you guys know any nice songs? too witch he would reply with a dirty look…sorry Buzz! lol

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