Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Wayne Tremayne and The Thunder

A global sensation, Wayne Tremayne and The Thunder played rock concerts in the biggest stadiums in the world.

They won music awards, their online fan club had millions of members and the band's music was a staple of rock stations everywhere.

As a result, Wayne and his band members bought Beverly Hills homes, and cars and yachts in a showy display of what money could buy.

Yet sometimes Wayne would think of Annie, his long ago high school sweetheart, and all the fun they had together when they didn't have any money.

But that was years ago in Oceanside, a town 100 miles from Beverly Hills and a million miles from Hollywood.

Now Wayne had money and fame as he had hoped, but he also had enormous pressures.

Wayne had agents, business managers, publicists, lawyers, accountants and many other people, all of whom were on his payroll.

Much of the money the band was making went to all these people, and to hotels. limousines, stage equipment and everything else the band needed on its tours.

But it got worse, as taxes devoured half the income that remained.

One day Wayne realized that of all the money the band actually received, it was barely enough to pay for their homes and cars and yachts, and if their music ever stopped selling, they'd be broke.

The pressure finally became too much for Wayne when two of the band members nearly overdosed on drugs and spent months convalescing in hospitals and drug rehab facilities.

His worst nightmare had begun as the music and tour income stopped while those two band members were in recovery, fighting for their lives.

"That's it," Wayne proclaimed. "I can't stand this anymore." And he broke up the band, which meant no more music, no more concerts, no more anything.

Soon the public began to forget Wayne Tremayne and The Thunder, their fans dropped out and their music was played only on oldies stations.

Wayne sold his Beverly Hills home, his cars, and his yacht and returned to Oceanside.

He contacted Annie hoping to rekindle their relationship, but Annie said, "No," she was married, and had buried the past. Heartbroken, Wayne understood and respected her decision.

Wayne's life was adrift, but then he made some important life decisions.

Wayne still loved music and he decided to teach music at the local community college. It wouldn't pay very much, but he didn't care,

To live in Oceanside, Wayne bought not a fancy estate, but a tiny house near the campus, and bought an old compact car.

Wayne devoted himself to his students and to reading great works of literature seeking to become wiser and to think on a higher plane.

But most of all, he was seeking peace.

Annie often occupied his thoughts, but she was married and perhaps had children. There was no place for him in her life.

Then one day while teaching a music class, Wayne noticed a new student in the far corner of the classroom, too far for him to see clearly.

But when the class ended, this student came forward and Wayne could see it was Annie.

"How are you," she asked. "I'm fine," he replied and he began to fill Annie in on his life.

"My marriage didn't work out," she told Wayne. "We're divorced, and it was a clean break because we had no children."

"I was curious what you were doing," Annie said. "I heard you were teaching and I decided to sit in, thinking maybe we could talk afterward."

"My life is very simple," Wayne said softly.

"I do what I love, I donate the residual payments from my music to charity and I live simply. I have no place for money and fame."

"They have no place for me either," answered Annie. "I'm a writer, one who loves to write children's stories. I don't make much money but I'm happy.

Wayne and Annie began to date, and a short time later they were married.

That was five years ago. Today, they have two children, children they lovingly raise together.

And it turned out that Annie's stories became very popular.

Her publisher wanted her to go on television and on tour to promote her books, but Annie replied, "No thank you."

"My place and my joy is here with my family."

"I will continue to write but I will never become the rock star of children's literature, for I am a happy and devoted wife and mother, as anyone can tell by reading the stories in my books."


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