DOWNEY - Fans of Downey's own Richard and Karen Carpenter traveled from as far away as Washington, D.C. to honor the hit '70's music duo at the renovated Bob's Big Boy Broiler on July 17 at a book-signing event for author Randy Schmidt's new biography "Little Girl Blue: The Life Of Karen Carpenter."With Carpenters tunes playing over the Broiler sound system, Schmidt said he was gratified by the turnout of a steady stream of fans during the late afternoon along with "all the national attention the book is getting from sources such as "People" magazine and "Entertainment Tonight." Among those in attendance was David Konjoyan, co-producer of the 1994 "If I Were A Carpenter" tribute album, and now vice president of The Recording Academy. "It's telling that so many people still care about such a gifted talent all these years later," he said. Frank Pooler of Seal Beach was the Carpenters' choral instructor at Cal State Long Beach and later their orchestral director. What he remembers most about Karen was her "great sense of humor. She was very witty and very perceptive in her thoughts and feelings for people…and she was a drummer!" Flying in from Chicago was Bob Finholm who, at age 11, saw the duo perform in 1973. Closer to home, David Swain of Downey said he became a fan after hearing them interviewed on Wink Martindale's KMPC radio show in 1971. Larry Fincher of Lakewood is a long-time fan of the Carpenters "since high school" he said, "although I couldn't tell my hard-rock loving friends at the time!" Downey Historical Society's George Redfox was also on-hand, displaying news clippings about the duo's connection to Downey, including one about recent attempts by fans to preserve the Carpenter family home on Newville Avenue. For more information, go to www.downeyhistoricalsociety.org. Jon Konjoyan is a music producer and journalist from Los Angeles.
********** Published: July 22, 2010 - Volume 9 - Issue 14