Eddie Money is an artist responsible for some of the most recognizable and iconic tunes of the ‘70s and ’80s: “Baby Hold On,” “Two Tickets To Paradise,” and “Shakin’,” to name a few. He is a man with few regrets. He could have been the voice for one of the original Ninja Turtles (which one he didn’t say) but he turned that down. He could have had his music be part of The Weather Channel repertoire. He nixed that too.
But 30 years after he first topped the charts (those career missteps aside), he’s not doing bad at all. He’s given up smoking and drinking, is moving into a Manhattan apartment with his “beautiful” wife and will soon be going on tour with Lou Gramm from Foreigner and The Starship’s Mickey Thomas, two of his hitmaking compadres from the ’70s and ‘80s.
Their Jingle Bell Rock Tour kicks off the day after Thanksgiving on Friday, November 25, and runs through mid-December. “Right after Thanksgiving with the spirit of giving,” Money says, “right through the holidays. Everybody loves Christmas. It’s gonna be a lot of fun. That said, all is not completely satisfactory with this venture, in Money’s eyes, at least.
“I want to open up the show. I’m fighting with everybody. I wanted to open up the show with 'Two Tickets To Paradise' then 'Baby, Hold On.' Then I wanted to do 'Everybody Loves Christmas' and bring out Lou and bring out Mickey and do the song 'Christmas Comes But Once a Year.' I thought it would be really great to do that. And then I was gonna have Lou do 'Hot Blooded' and 'I Want To Know What Love Is.' Then he was gonna do his Christmas song and then I was gonna come back out and do another song and bring Mickey back out with 'We Built This City.' I had a whole set worked out. I worked really hard on it and all these sons of bitches are giving me so much crap over it.”
Who is? “The management company, the guitar player, the booking agent.” He’s yelling now. “It’s my show, for Chrissake! I tell you the truth, they aggravate me. I’m livin’ on Tums, for Chrissake. Between my wife and my five rotten kids and all these people around me, I tell you, I’m ready to jump out the window. I might not land on my feet. I’m on the tenth floor.”
“They love you,” I tell him. “They all do.” His voice softens at my assurance. “I love my family. I try to surround myself with good people. I do a lot for Jerry’s Kids. I’m not a very rich rock star. All my riches are in my children and my fans. I’ve gotta sell my house in Florida right now. The economy down there is terrible. There’s 65 percent foreclosures down there. I lost my life insurance from smoking too much cigarettes. I quit. They didn’t want me back. The bus company hit me up for ten thousand dollars over some crap! Everybody’s got their hand out but you know what? I got a great family. My wife loves me. I got a lot of great fans out there.
“I’m working with Mickey Thomas, who’s a great artist, and Lou, who’s in really great shape and great spirits. They’re very spiritual people and I’m looking forward to showing everybody a great holiday. Right after Thanksgiving with the spirit of giving, right through the holidays. Everybody loves Christmas. It’s gonna be a lot of fun.”
Another project close to Money’s heart is the “One More Soldier Coming Home” charity single he’s just released. All the proceeds go to Intrepid Fallen Heroes, a non-profit organization whose mission is to pay tribute to those who have sacrificed for the United States. Money explains, “These kids come back from Iraq and Afghanistan with these horrible head injuries. These kids really serve their country not for four years of free college and the G.I. Bill. People join the service because their relatives were in the service or, let’s face it, because they love this country. You go to my website and download the song all the proceeds go to the Fallen Heroes foundation. It’s a great organization.”
Listening to the song brings home the fact that Money still sounds good. Great, in fact. That trademark husky rasp is still as vital as ever. He gives all the credit to his better half. “I’ve got a really great wife, she doesn’t eat red meat, she works out, she runs five miles a day and she’s an inspiration to me. She’s a beautiful woman and to tell you the truth I’d like to sit around and watch Sports Center. I already quit smoking cigarettes. I don’t drink anymore but I do have to get more exercise.”
Money’s sure to get in shape on the 17-date Jingle Bell Rock Tour, which will traverse the midwest and east coast before heading west for the tour’s final tour dates. Both the complete schedule and link to purchase "One More Soldier Coming Home" can be found on Money’s website.