Blog dedicated primarily to randomly selected news items; comments reflecting personal perceptions

Friday, May 22, 2015

Living A Delusion

"We [his musical band in North Carolina] became popular with the college crowd."
"I kept it very hush-hush [that he is Eric Clapton's half-brother]. I did not want to be known as 'Eddie Fryer, the half-brother of Eric Clapton."
"This writer came in and did a character assassination on the place where I live [rooming house in Vancouver's Downtown Eastside]. Granted, it is not the Hilton. It is a shelter that has a medical team and they do a good job of looking after me."
"He [Eric Clapton] played it [a demo tape of his music], and right away he wrote me a personal letter where he said he played the CD and it blew him away.Yes, he liked it and I sent him a letter back just to say I was glad you were able to get an opportunity to see what your brother's music was like."
"I have never asked him for money. A person is not entitled to another person's achievements."
"I gain nothing by being defeated [by heroin and illness]. I am a fighter and want to play again, maybe even with Eric."
Fast Eddie Fryer, Vancouver musician
Jason Payne/Postmedia News
Jason Payne/Postmedia News   At one time, Eddie Fryer was convinced he would meet his half-brother Eric Clapton.

Ah well, it is human nature to dream and to fantasize, and to believe and to have hope that one's dearest wishes will be realized some day. But Eddie Fryer is fast running out of time. He learned seventeen years ago that the famous Eric Clapton is his half-brother, both biological sons of a shared father. Correction: Eddie Fryer shared his early life with his father, Edward Fryer Sr., who'd had a wartime fling in Britain with Patricia Clapton who was left to raise her son Eric as a single mother.

Eddie Fryer Sr. was also a musician; he played piano. When he was demobilized at war's end, he set out on a dinner club piano-playing career in appearances across North America. Both his boys inherited his love of music; each of them played guitar. And both boys when they reached maturity struggled with addiction to heroin. But whereas Eric Clapton left his heroin addiction to the past and carried on with his career, his half-brother had no such luck.

And now he suffers from "end-stage" cirrhosis of the liver. And he is dependent on social services for a place to live, for social welfare assistance, and for medical treatment for his poor health condition and just as poor health outlook. At an age when new opportunities no longer present themselves, when age and failing health guarantees not too many years on the horizon, Eddie Fryer still has a fond hope that he will some day play guitar with his half-brother.

Jason Payne/Postmedia News
Jason Payne/Postmedia News   After discovering his lineage 17 years ago, “Fast Eddie” Fryer, now dying of cirrhosis of the liver, remembers how he was hounded by the press and just wanted to be left alone to deal with his own musical career — and his own demons.

Presumably, that hope sustains him. As for his brother, it seems that he is not that much given to brotherly affection for another man whom he has never met. Perhaps he feels nothing but resentment to have been abandoned, ignored by the biological parent he never met. In any event, that world-famous celebrity with wealth to spare, had none to spare for his indigent brother. While Eddie Fryer takes pride in never having asked his brother for money, perhaps his brother takes pride in never having offered any.

But it would appear that Eddie Fryer is a reasonable man, grateful for whatever life had to offer him, back when he was young and ambitious, and even now that he is old and ailing. A story written for the British media recently made the observation that Mr. Fryer lived in squalid conditions. A misunderstanding, says Mr. Fryer, of the rooming house where he lives, and where he is well cared for.

"They have been very much responsible for getting my medical condition under control", he observes of his subsidized "medical" housing. He still dreams of revisiting his musical career. He still believes that he will meet his half-brother, that Eric Clapton will make a magnificent effort to take the trouble to visit with his half-brother in Vancouver.

He would have to have surgery on his hands because of the tightened tendons, to enable him to hold a guitar once again. And if that happened, and if he met his half-brother, and if they played a duet, he would die a happy man. He feasts on his dreams of fulfillment, as a musician, as a man whose playing ability might match that of his famous, multi-millionaire half-brother.

Labels: , , ,


Post a Comment

<< Home

()() Follow @rheytah Tweet