Bill Shaw Part 2

Bill Shaw defined what it was to be cool. He walked with a distinctive gait due to a motorcycle injury that served to make him that much cooler. His aura was ten times larger than he was and he capitalized on it.

Known for outrageous bravado, Bill told a local newspaper reporter The Shackles would soon be touring with the Rolling Stones. As implausible as that was, we wanted to believe it was true just so we could be linked even at a distance to someone that cool.

I don't know how it happened but to my great delight and the benefit of my ego, Bill and I became friends. Soon after getting to know Bill, he asked me to photograph The Shackles.  They were all warm, fun and friendly as Bill.

Very early in our friendship, still trembling in the shadow of my idol, I joined Bill for a Coke sitting at a back table of the Snacktime restaurant in Hinsdale's Grant Square shopping center. It was one of those "had to pinch myself moments". I was enjoying a one on one audience with a god and I felt cool.

Before my gloating fully set in, a guy younger than me recognized Bill and came up to the table to chat.  He was also a musician.  Mind you I had already sweated a year of hopeful anticipation that one day I could hang around with the likes of a Bill Shaw.  The younger guy walked right up to our table apparently unaware of just how powerful an individual Bill Shaw was.  I nervously feared for this youngster worrying that Bill Shaw actually could breath fire and consume our uninvited guest in a matter of seconds.

As my tension built, the young man began to talk about the musical equipment he owned.  Did he not know that you just don't barge into the presence of the mighty Bill Shaw and start babbling about your gear?

To my astonishment, Bill complimented him and asked questions about the type of music he liked and encouraged him. He was thoughtful and kind without talking down to the boy.  I was greatly relieved and Bill's standing in my eyes was elevated yet another notch.

Bill Shaw Part 3