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Sports is No. 1 for "The Money Man."

Posted: October 7, 2012 - 12:05am

One of the perks of working at The News-Times is getting to cover a wide variety of stories beyond sports. So when I heard Eddie Money and Starship were playing Evans Towne Center Oct. 12, I jumped at the chance to write the preview story.

Truth be told, I stole the story from our staff writer Jenna Martin, but I don’t think she minded. I’m a bit older than she is and went through my teenage years listening to them on the radio.

So I was a little excited to be talking to Eddie Money, my first rock star interview. I didn’t know what to expect from “The Money Man,” but I figured it mostly would be about music and his tour.

And I was mostly wrong.

He was funny, irreverent at times and definitely interesting, the kind of guy you want to hang out with and listen to stories for hours. I can only imagine the things he has seen and done in 35 years of touring. I only had him on the phone for 20 minutes, and even though he didn’t know I was the News-Times’ sports writer, sports is what he wanted to talk about.

At one point he asked where I was from. I told him Maryland. That led to a discussion about the Baltimore Orioles. I was certainly a touch jealous when he said he met my baseball idol Cal Ripken. We spent time talking about other former Orioles greats like Jim Palmer and Eddie Murray. He’s from Brooklyn and is a Mets fan. He certainly scored points with me when he said he hated the Yankees.

For those under 40,, Eddie Money might be most recognizable as the crazy travel agent in recent Geico commercials. He was pleased with the way the commercial turned out.

“I only did the commercial because I thought my wife was going to be in it and she ended up on the editing room floor,” Money said.

“It’s a funny commercial and they played it on Monday Night Football, and how many fans can you get from that? They gave me that coat that I got on and I got a free pair of sneakers out of it, so that was pretty cool. I mean, the sneakers I had on in the commercial I’m wearing right now,” he said.

“But the Geico people were very nice and the commercial was good and it was fun.”

Even though he’s from New York, he definitely has an affinity for the South and he recognized fairly quickly that I wasn’t a native Georgian.

“You don’t have that drawl my wife’s got, she’s a Tennessee girl,” he said, adding that she went to college at Ole Miss.

I didn’t ask him who he thought might win the Border Bash, but it was apparent early on in the conversation who he would be pulling for.

“I might be from Brooklyn, but I do follow the Dawgs,” he said.

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