Wildman Fischer was my house guest.
In 1987 I was an Artist in Residence at the Massachusetts College of Art.
One day at Mass Art, I found myself in another planning meeting for "Eventworks" a Performance and New Music Festival (I'd been involved for some years, bringing The Church of the SubGenius to Mass Art as the Boston Bob-a-lon. I also produced two performances by legendary Boston Psychedelic Punk band "The Girls").
That year Eventworks was also featured Under-Ground
Filmmaker Jack (Flaming Creatures) Smith.
I had some knowledge of the ordeal involved in hosting Mr. Smith, as I had witnessed an acquaintance's experience some years earlier. Since it was the late 1970's Jack required a constant flow of Guinness Stout and cocaine, this meant he also needed someone to lead him from place to place.. I shared this information but Cassandra-like it went unheeded. Not surprisingly, Laurie decided that one high maintenance house guest was enough of an adventure and would not be hosting another.
So it fell on me to welcome Larry into the Zontar compound. We were still publishing the Magazine then but one of the Editors had moved to Western Mass to pursue an academic career, so luckily we had an empty bedroom.
Wildman Fisher didn't fly so he took the train from LA to Boston. I met him at South Station and was immediately struck by his warmth as well as the contradictions and energy of this person. I was
already familiar with the symptoms of Bi-Polar Illness but Larry at this point in his life was experiencing mood swings every hour. This most likely was made worse by his nervousness anticipating his first and it turned out only East Coast performance.
Rosemary Clooney, so in his high points he would speculate "What's next, a duo with Sinatra?" In his low points he would rage that Zappa had cheated him and was trying to kill him. In the space between the extremes the real Larry existed, an open insightful individual that has made his recordings loved to those in the know.
The performance was almost anti-climatic. Loose and chaotic, Larry none the less pleased the audience. I ran the theater soundboard and from there I continued my encouragement, (for instance advising Larry
not to play his recorded Rosemary Clooney collaboration a fourth time.)
The school wanted to video tape the show but, no matter what I tried, he refused to perform
with the camera recording . I did make a recording off of the soundboard but Larry made me sign a paper that I would never copy it, and I never have.
For several months after his return to LA, I received collect calls at 3 AM from Larry, checking in.