The desire to dig:

I always have a short list of mysteries I wish I could solve about Ben’s life. In the number one spot is the location of the apartment fire that he survived four decades ago. It always seemed strange to me that information about such a monumental event could remain so elusive. In 2016, I started poking around for clues about Boston-area fires and collecting the puzzle pieces in a file, hoping to be able to snap them all together someday. It proved pretty difficult, and I was hitting wall after wall.

During that time I met Joe Milliken and we became friends. As I got to know him better and understood his heart for the book he was writing about Ben, I quietly resolved to set aside certain areas of my research because I didn’t want to scoop him on stuff. I just felt it was the right thing to do, you know? So I closed the file on the fire.

I kept that decision to myself until long after he invited me to help with the book. When it eventually came up, I learned that, unfortunately, he didn’t know the specifics of the location either. But low and behold, after the book was published, a reader stepped forward and emailed Joe with a previously-unknown-to-me-but-very-viable possibility: a five-alarm fire at 101-103 Tremont in the early hours of December 9, 1979. Knowing how important it was to me personally to investigate this bit of Ben’s history, Joe very generously passed the tip to me and turned me loose.

I eagerly jumped down the research rabbit hole. My digging for details led me to Charlie Vasiliades. Not only has he lived in the neighborhood of the fire for more than 60 years, but he has an incredible memory and a huge heart for history. He serves as the vice president of the Brighton Allston Historical Society, and is affectionately nicknamed the ‘mayor of Oak Square’ due to his longtime dedication to community activism. Charlie was instrumental in bringing this story to life.

My fundamental premise:

Located on the west side of the district of Brighton is an upscale, hilly little neighborhood called Oak Square. It is conveniently located near several universities, and is less than a 20 minute drive from downtown Boston. The area boasts a quiet “village” feel amidst its pretty residential areas, while having easy access to all of the opportunities and conveniences of the big city.

Back in 1979, near the outskirts of Oak Square, two brick apartment buildings were nestled into a little wooded hillside on Tremont Avenue. The twin six-story complexes were owned by Joseph Lombardi and were fairly new, having been constructed in 1973. Each building was made up of two wings joined with a central lobby/foyer area, and topped with tiers of penthouse apartments. One was addressed as 101-103 Tremont, the other as 109-111 Tremont. These Google images below show the front and top of present-day 109-111 Tremont, an exact duplicate of its sister complex that used to stand to its right.

Both buildings were fully occupied in 1979, providing homes for an estimated 300 people, including small families, elderly couples, college students, and business professionals. I believe that Benjamin lived there, too.

After receiving that tip from Joe this past summer, I have scoured records and resources to try to track down the facts, but as of this writing, I have been unable to find actual legal documentation that Ben lived in this building (the landlord’s office and all of the records were destroyed with the structure). I’m laying my claim for Ben’s residency based on circumstantial evidence:

  • ben mention croppedOak Square residents remember that one of the tenants was a member of The Cars.
  • Steve Berkowitz’s quote in Let’s Go! Benjamin Orr and The Cars confirms that Ben lived in Brighton in 1979-1980.
  • Articles and posts that mention the fire always put it around the beginning of the year 1980.
  • In the press kit for Candy-O, the notes narrate that Ben had recently moved into a new apartment. He is quoted as saying, “I’m on the top floor and there’s a valley below me, and another hill about a mile away. You can see the treeline and stuff.” This description fits in with the topography of Oak Square.
  • Of the other fires I’ve researched in that area and from that time period, this is the only one that comes close to fitting in with the window of information available.

That terrible fire:

Sunday, December 9, 1979.

Charlie Vasiliades was a young college student and a night owl by nature. He lived with his family in a house built into a hillside overlooking much of the Oak Square neighborhood. The view was beautiful, though sound tended to be amplified from the streets below. On this night, the temperature dipped below freezing and a light dusting of snow covered the ground as Charlie relaxed in front of the television.

Shortly after midnight Charlie began to hear sirens swelling and fading outside his home. Just one at first, which was not unusual, but soon another followed, and then several more in rapid succession. He stepped out on his porch where he could see down to the main street. Emergency vehicles were racing by, accumulating about three blocks west and down the hill from his house. The night sky was illuminated with an eerie orange glow and smoke billowing up into the dark. His ears were assaulted with a cacophony of sirens piercing the air for about a good hour. It was past 1 a.m. when he returned inside and made his way toward bed. As curious as he was, he knew he would only be in the way if he showed up on the scene.

At the fire station, the first tones had sounded at 12:25 a.m. after a resident of 101 Tremont pulled the fire alarm in the laundry room, possibly on the second floor. Witnesses inside observed smoke coming from both the elevator shaft and the trash compactor room as they headed out of the building. Investigators later confirmed that the fire did indeed start in the 101 building in the trash compactor, though they could not determine what sparked it.

Many residents reported that there had been several minor fires and at least one false alarm in the complex in recent weeks, so when the fire alarm sounded in the middle of the night, they weren’t too worried. They shrugged on their jackets and hustled out of their apartments empty-handed, expecting to be allowed to return to their beds in short order. Several walked over to the lobby of 109 Tremont to keep warm while they waited to hear the ‘all clear.’ (A short time later, when that building was evacuated, they returned to the street and were shocked by what they saw.)

A second alarm was struck at 12:46 a.m., a third at 12:57 a.m., a fourth at 1:05 a.m., and the fifth at 1:21 a.m. Trucks from Newton and other Boston firehouses raced to the scene to lend support. Bolstered by strong winds, the fire was fierce and all-consuming, relentlessly eating away the interior walls and blasting the glass out of windows. At the peak of the battle, 150 firefighters and over 40 emergency vehicles were working in tandem to defeat the flames.

It was wise of Charlie to stay put. The whole situation was a terrifying mess. Emergency responders were hindered by the hundreds of displaced residents, concerned neighbors, and curious spectators who clogged the area around the buildings even as police officers attempted to keep them out of the danger zone.

By around 2:15 a.m. the authorities believed the fire was under control, but suddenly a gush of flames bolted up the back of the building, broke through the roof, and began to devour the other half of the structure, 103 Tremont. Steel railings melted and the wall between the conjoined buildings collapsed. Flames shot out of the roof high into the night, scattering embers. In an attempt to keep the aggressive flames from grabbing other structures, neighbors were evacuated and firefighters hosed down the surrounding homes as well as Our Lady of the Presentation Church, which stood up on the hill behind the apartment complex. The Boston Globe reported that the heat was so intense it could be felt in the middle of the street. It took more than an hour to regain control.

Members of the American Red Cross were at the scene almost immediately, setting up a disaster shelter in the church to provide warm blankets, hot drinks, and comforting refuge throughout the long night. The fire was contained by 3:30 a.m., though firefighters would continue to work on extinguishing the blaze as the sun came up. Three days later some of the debris was still smoldering.

Charlie remembers seeing coverage of the disastrous fire on the morning news. “The footage showed practically every single window opening, as well as the roof, was pouring out orange flames. It was a very distinctive sight in my memory.”

The level of devastation hit home when he went outside. “I remember going out into my backyard. It was a clear, sunny day in December, kind of cold. I found big chunks of burnt out wallpaper and debris in the garden. It was really quite startling.”

Charlie got dressed and walked down to the fire site. The street was still teeming with onlookers, and fire trucks were everywhere. The blaze was out; the entire complex was destroyed. Describing what he saw, Charlie explained, “The building was kind of a ziggurat style, set back on the hill with three levels. To its immediate right there were public stairs that connected the street the fire was on to another major street up behind the site.

“You could see that it was literally a ruin,” he continued. “Except for the very front wings of the building, the entire structure had collapsed in on itself. The walls were standing, but the windows were just gaping holes into nothing. In the two front wings, I remember the top floor had burned. A couple of rooms on the bottom floor in the front arms had not burned, but that was about it. The firemen were still pouring water into the building. It was quite a scene.”

It is incredible that in the middle of such a powerful disaster, there were no casualties and no critical injuries. Many residents were rescued from the building using aerial ladders. At least 40 residents were treated on the scene for exposure, cuts, bruises, and smoke inhalation. More than 20 people, including nine firefighters, were transported to a nearby hospital for further care. But everyone got out alive and burn-free. Overall, a wide ribbon of gratefulness wove its way through the shock of the night.

Still, the aftermath brought a different kind of devastation: over 140 tenants were left without their homes, their treasured possessions, and the common necessities for everyday living. People lost everything in those apartments. Every. single. thing. Furniture, clothing, photographs, money, medications, legal documents. Grief and fear threatened to overtake many of the victims as they considered their irreplaceable belongings and the prospect of finding a new home in the middle of a citywide housing shortage.

But they weren’t left on their own. Over the next several days Red Cross volunteers worked tirelessly to meet the victims’ immediate basic needs: a place to stay and food to eat, vital medications, clothing vouchers, and guidance for the first critical steps necessary to start over again. In addition, the community banded together to find ways to help:

  • The owner of the destroyed complex joined in the search for long-term housing solutions, too, making it a priority to take care of his former residents.
  • A neighboring superintendent set up a Brighton Fire Victims Fund at a local bank to field monetary donations. The balance of approximately $2,500 was evenly distributed among victims after February 28, 1980.
  • In January of 1980, the Brighton-Allston Clergy Association announced it would be holding a “Fire Dance” benefit and buffet to raise funds for those still without a permanent home. The successful event brought in over $4,000, and was used to purchase appliances, furniture, and other staples for the families.
  •  A tangible sense of love and support blanketed the victims of the fire. One resident felt that the disaster may have been “a gift from God” because it forced people to get to connect. He was quoted in the Allston Brighton Citizen Item as saying, “Previously we were all strangers but as a result of the fire we found out that they weren’t strangers, but friends I hadn’t met.”

1940_photoAnd then, somehow, life went on. In February of 1980, investigators ruled the fire was accidental, and commended the firefighters on the scene for doing an excellent job battling the conflagration.

The site of 101-103 Tremont was eventually demolished, cleared out, and left vacant for nearly forty years. Finally, in 2016, developers broke ground on the lot and began construction of a new housing facility called 99 Tremont. Similar to the original structure, this complex included 62 living units, but it was also fitted with all sorts of special amenities, like a fitness center, game room, and lounge. These luxury apartments and condos became available in the spring of 2017.

My speculations:

If Ben did live in this building, as I believe he did, he would have occupied one of the rooftop penthouse apartments (as he described living on the top floor). Those apartments were completely obliterated, and Ben lost all of his possessions, save for “his new genuine wolf coat, which he had bought in Canada,” as mentioned by Steve Berkowitz in Let’s Go! on page 117. His guitars, his art; his clothing and photographs and souvenirs. Even his wallet and identification (read the book to see how that played out!). He must have been devastated.

But still, knowing of Ben’s kind heart, I wouldn’t be surprised if he had given money to help the other residents whose lives were upended. He probably did even more for the ones he knew better. I wonder what kind of neighbor he was; if he kept to himself or if he was proactive about meeting others. Maybe he flirted shamelessly with the elderly ladies who saw him as a surrogate son. Haha! Surely he was helpful and considerate, and I suspect he didn’t draw a bunch of attention to his rockstar status.

Berkowitz flying with the band in 1979

Berkowitz goes on to say in that passage of the book that right after the fire, they got on a plane and “were headed to Los Angeles for recording sessions.” I’ve been mulling this over to determine how it may or may not support the timeline of the Tremont fire.

If Berkowitz meant they were heading out to record Panorama, that would have happened in April or May of 1980, as I believe that is when that album was recorded, so this Tremont fire would not be the one. However, The Cars played shows in Inglewood, California, on December 19 and 20 of 1979. Could it be that this is where they were headed on the plane? Perhaps Berkowitz just made a mistake in recalling the band’s destination? Joe has made attempts to clarify that information for me but no luck yet.

Mercifully, life went on for Ben, too. I believe that he may have stayed with Elliot in Weston after the fire, before purchasing his own house nearby in March. He would own that Weston house until 1996.

Pending any new information, I feel like I can put this mystery to rest. It was actually quite heart-wrenching to immerse myself in all of this, to think about what Benjamin might have experienced and felt. I suspect many of you will feel the same way. I am incredibly grateful that he was unharmed physically… it could have been so much worse.

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**12.16.2019 UPDATE: I posted this article on Facebook and Greg Hawkes confirmed that this was indeed Ben’s building:

greg confirmation

35 thoughts on “A Case for the Tremont Fire

  1. I, too, wondered about that fire. My own projects aside, I did begin looking into it as well, but coming up with absolutely nothing with some preliminary ‘snooping,’ I sort of gave up, figuring it was too long ago, and without significant digging, access to documents, people who were there, and other resources, it would remain a mystery. I commend you on your dogged determination to find out the truth. You laid out the facts, described your suspicions, and connected them as closely as possible. You’ve made a very valid argument for that to have been the apartment in which Benjamin lived. If only one of the other members of the band would step forward and confirm this, as I’m quite sure they’d know if that was his address. Especially Elliot, who, sadly, is incredibly tight-lipped regarding anything ‘Benjamin.’ Too bad, too. I’m sure there’d be a lot he could share with us, but I’m sure he has his reasons as to why he does not, and that loyalty and devotion is also to be admired.

    Thank you for sharing this. All the time, research, endless time down that rabbit hole (who hasn’t fallen into one with Benjamin? 🙂 ) and then sharing it all with us. Now, for that verification… 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    1. One of my thoughts about publishing this without 100% surety was that maybe the article would prompt someone who does know to come forward with confirmation and/or more details. Or, of course, they may tell me I’m wrong. I’m open for that, too; I just want to know the real story.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Yup, you, me, and surely *many* others would like to know. Once again, your research and writing is just pure excellence. Thank you again. As an aside, have you ever considered being a detective? 😉

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Fascinating article and excellent in depth research on this Donna. The fire certainly had a huge impact on Ben’s life. Wow! Terrifying to know we could have lost him in 1979. Even though his physical possessions were destroyed, our Ben was just grateful to have survived…and so are we!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Yes, I remember asking her about it but she wasn’t aware of the details, either. We’ve heard so much about how Ben just wouldn’t open up about difficult things, so it is very likely that he just didn’t mention it to most people.


  3. This is a remarkable piece, Donna – congratulations. Very readable, and always your thorough research. I do hope you (we!) hear confirmation or not this was Ben’s home.
    I have a strong sense about Ben and that fire. I’ll try to explain:
    In 2015, my then 12 y/o son and I experienced a major house fire (London duplex apartment). The fire pretty much gutted downstairs, but firefighters saved upstairs from catching alight. I was nearby – a mile or so at a live music event (- oh the irony in this case -) dashed home in response to the call from a neighbour.
    When I arrived, heavy, thick black smoke was billowing from every up- and down-stairs window and two fire teams were hard at work. I could focus on nothing but getting our beloved cat out. The heroic firefighters used heat-seeking equipment to find her upstairs; there was zero visibility. She spent the night in an oxygen tent at the vets to treat smoke inhalation, and made a full recovery.
    It was pretty devastating to other people who saw or heard of it. But at the close of that long day, I felt elated. I took a selfie, laughing, my face covered in soot. Point was – there had been no injuries. People were unhurt. My son, my cat and I were fine. I felt like the luckiest person in the world.
    Our photographs had been spared upstairs. A lot had to be thrown away due to smoke damage. But they were just “things” – yes, my art collection was lost, but everyone was fine and *they saved the cat*. No mistake, it was followed by months in a hotel, insurers hassling and haggling; that sort of thing. But, if we were to have a fire in our lifetimes, my son and I, that was it … and we were all fine.
    I would go so far as to suggest, then, it is possible Ben and his neighbours could have experienced similar feelings. *There were no injuries* (and I trust all pets made it out safely too) – that relief is indescribable. I’d guess – knowing Benjamin’s incredibly selfless character – I’d guess he will have been properly “bummed out” about his guitars and a few items of true sentiment. But overwhelmingly, probably, relief first for others and second himself.
    It’s an odd take on it, I’m sure. But it could be the fire is more devastating for us thinking about it (and omg not the red Vox Teardrop…) than for our dearest friend and icon, Benjamin.
    I’d be really interested to hear whether this makes any sense to others.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Wow! What an experience! Thank you so much for sharing. You very likely could be right about some of the emotions that Ben was feeling.

      I just updated the article at the bottom because I did get confirmation that Ben lived there from Greg Hawkes himself. It feels good to know for sure that this mystery is solved. ❤


  4. ::shivers:: Especially when you see the flames coming out of the top of the building, knowing THAT is where Benjamin lived, the relieved “thank gods” and terrible “what ifs?” multiply. I wondered about this as I’ve seen it mentioned his apartment burned down but I didn’t really know much about it. I didn’t know he was there at the time, I had assumed it happened at some point when he was away, not on tour as he’d have had those beautiful guitars with him, but just out for the day. It doesn’t matter who you are, losing everything in a fire is a devastating thing.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Donna, what an amazing article!
    Never let a mystery or loose-end deter you from finding answers.

    Those photos! And, of course, your weaving of the facts into a story brought it to life. That got my mind going. I have thought about this fire many times, and now your article has prompted me to think about it even more.

    I just spent a few days thinking this through and so now that I am posting it, I see that Greg has confirmed that this was indeed the fire. So now we have these images, this definitive date, and speculating on when and where is finished.

    As far as Steve Berkowitz’s story is concerned that is still a bit of a mystery. Of course, memories going back 40 years (as I am learning in my own life) are faulty. Even when events were huge at the time, you can still get them confused regarding what else was happening at the time.

    Steve Berkowitz’s memory of the plane is very solid b/c he proposed to his girlfriend on that plane ride. That memory is tied to the memory of Benjamin having to fly for work so close to losing everything b/c it was all so emotional. Steve was there to see what losing everything looks like. That will stick with you.

    As you mention, in the book Berkowitz says the fire was early in 1980, and he doesn’t put any time distance from going to the bank, and then “immediately after that” getting on a plane.

    So, if your friend lost everything in a fire in December and then 3 months later, you’re on a plane with him, would you use the phrase “immediately after”? Maybe, because it“felt” like it was immediately after.

    The fact that he remembered it as being AFTER the New Year is curious b/c proposing before Christmas or after New Year would stick in one’s mind. I met my husband for the first time on the second weekend in January of 1980. I know it because of New Years. If I met him the second week in March, that memory would most likely have become fuzzy even 10 years later.

    Berkowitz’s memory is faulty & has some holes in it. Now we know 12/9/1979 was the fire.

    I love how you laid out your speculations.

    “I believe he may have stayed with Elliot in Weston after the fire.”
    That makes sense. Because of the TV special on Elliot, “The Cars, Guitars, and Elliot Easton”, we can imagine what that would have looked like.

    “….His guitars, his art; his clothing and photographs and souvenirs. Even his wallet and identification (read the book to see how that played out!). He must have been devastated…”
    Yes, all that and I’m sure he had an extensive record collection. What musician doesn’t?

    His personal loss was tremendous, but I agree he most certainly would have worried about others who were left homeless. I am sure he considered himself fortunate financially at this point, and expected a bright future with the Cars. I can see him reaching out to give support

    “Maybe he flirted shamelessly with the elderly ladies who saw him as a surrogate son”.
    I bet he did!!!! What a wonderful thought.

    As far as him not talking about it, I think it was in his character to not be a serious person publicly. He shared so much of himself in his role as a member of The Cars, privacy would be paramount regarding his personal life and his personal struggles. Also, being an entertainer is a double edge sword. You have performance dates, recording dates, video dates, interviews, rehearsals, traveling. Not a lot of time to process big life events or much privacy for reflection. The show must go on!

    Imagine Ben being interviewed by Barbara Walters back in the day. Can you see him opening up as she asked him about the draft, the fire, his friendship with Ric, and his love relationships? Not so much.

    There truly are people who are able to take lots of blows and put them behind them, not dwell. Just let them go, and move forward. Benjamin may have been one of those people – until he got that phone call from Ric. That was different, and perhaps worse than the feeling of loss after a fire.

    “It was actually quite heart-wrenching to immerse myself in all of this, to think about what Benjamin might have experienced and felt. I suspect many of you will feel the same way. I am incredibly grateful that he was unharmed physically… it could have been so much worse.”

    So grateful!!!

    Thank you, Donna for doing this difficult research and giving us closure on this awful event. Thank you also for giving us all an opportunity to share our thoughts and feelings about it too!!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Wonderful thoughts! Thank you so much for sharing them with us. You make a great case for Berkowitz’s quote and memory of the events around this time, especially as they pertain to proposing to his wife. ❤


  6. I thought you might be interested… this article about the fire has inspired me to write a short story about it. Well, not exactly *this* fire, but a *fictional* fire, with fictional characters. Something that I’ve been ruminating for quite awhile, but without enough information to motivate me, it seemed like a project that might never see the light of day. But I’m happy to report, there may be an offering in my Amazon book list. Thanks for inspiring me to move forward with my writing project. Though there are specific details that I will not portray, there are some that will be inspiration. People sort of come together during tragedy, complete strangers, and find comfort and solace with their mutual grief. I believe this is the perfect vehicle. No pun. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Of course… as soon as it’s written! Once it’s uploaded, I’ll return to this post/thread and submit a link. Ben is such a wonderful inspiration, as you know! Thank you for the encouragement. Back to work!

        Liked by 1 person

  7. As promised. It’s a very (VERY!) short story, and you’ll see quite a few differences between fact and (this) fiction. But you’ll definitely see the inspiration. Thank you for watering that seed, Donna. 😉

    Also find another book called Sunsets featuring a familiar inspiration on this website. I appreciate the opportunity to present it here. Thank you for allowing me the plug!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Thank you so much for the kind words, Donna. I’m thrilled that you enjoyed them! And yes, that first one was *not* inspired by Ben, but the other two, without a doubt he was the muse that got those two written! There will be more to come! 😉

        Liked by 1 person

  8. I went over to that Benjamin Orr Remembered Facebook that you told me about in the other post for the info on Ben’s instruments, etc and couldn’t get into the albums but could look at the photos in order one by one(such a terrible chore, I know :)). So I was doing that tonight.

    Anyway, in one of the articles, it may have been a translated Japanese article but I could be misremembering, Ben mentioned that, along with everything else, he also lost SONGS he’d written. They were on tape and he lost them all and he said it took him a while to start to feel like writing again. So that may have added to the emotional upset. He said he for a while like part of himself was missing(not about the songs but because of losing everything in the fire). Sorry I didn’t keep track of which article it was to link to it. I’m sure you saw it, Donna, but it reminded me of this post and thought someone new coming along might not have read it.

    By the way I think I like those Japanese articles that were translated better than most of the English language ones, the interviewers asked better questions for the most part and the guys seemed to give better answers(maybe based on the type of questions and the attitude of the interviewers).

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I don’t remember seeing those specific details. I do remember a Japanese article that someone gave a summary of (not a direct translation) that indicated more info. I planned to have it directly translated but I dropped the ball. I’ll have to find that… ❤


    1. And not sure anyone might’ve caught this, but at the very top of the page about Elliot and Ric, there’s the little snippet about Benjamin being the ‘most dangerous man’ the interviewer (and Ben’s girlfriend) ever met. 😉

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Yes I noticed that, thought it was funny. Because of his “enchanting” speaking voice. Have to agree there. If I remember correctly, I think the first words I heard him say, a few months back, was greeting the crowd just before performing Just What I Needed at Live Aid and I was like “My goodness what a nice speaking voice”, then I heard him talk more and was like “oh someone should have gotten this man recording audio books, he would have made a killing” and I would say “enchanting” is perfect description. 😀 Either audio books or hypnotism. LOL

        Liked by 3 people

  9. Hello there, first of all I’d just like to say that I love this blog. I have been a Cars fan since the early 80s, but I’m only just now getting into the fan community. Thanks for your detective work on the fire. It’s finally a nice day here in Boston & I was inspired by your story to check out Tremont street for myself (lots of free time these days). I snapped a pic of the surviving sister apartment building from the vantage point of the hill across the street. It gives a great view of the penthouses. Happy to send to you if you’re interested.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Amy! Thank you for your kind words. I’m glad you found the blog and that you’re enjoying it! ❤ Yes, I'd definitely be interested in seeing your photo. I had hoped to seek the location out when I was in Boston last June as I was in the research stage, but I just couldn't fit it in. I appreciate your offer to share. It's nice to meet you!


  10. This interview took a bit to digest. So chock full of tidbits, and hole filling. WOW!!!
    Any idea who Ben’s girlfriend was during the time of the Panorama tour?

    I get from it that part of his angst over losing everything was that his attachment to his “stuff” was strong. He lived like a lot of musicians did in the late 60’s and early 70’s. All over the place, lots of traveling, lots of people’s couches. All you own on your back. Collecting new things attached to memories along the way, Keeping track of them so they become cherished items in a way. I guess he had a place for his stuff during his marriage to Kris, but then he was on his own again. Then finally when he put together a place of his own, reaping the benefits of al his hard work for 20 years, and had a safe place set up all his belongings and things he collected over the years, poof all of it up in smoke. Ouch. That is painful.

    Also the bit about his writing some songs for the album. Interesting, as in most likely all would have been rejected by Ric anyway.
    Having the luxury of hindsight, Ric did not connect to Ben’s song writing, as he stated more than once. His rejection of Ben’s request to write for Door to Door, I don’t believe, was only about Diane. It was that Ric was the songwriter no if’s, ands, or buts.

    On the “most dangerous man” thing. I would say when you watch him in Muskladen Bye Bye Love the end when he stands close to Elliot for the awesome ending, as he eggs Elliot on with that downward glance and that “come on give it to me” look, yes I can’t totally see “dangerous” there.
    And of course who among us is not attracted to dangerous like a moth to a flame? (if not for real then at least in our fantasies).
    I’ll have one serving of dangerous from Benjamin Orr please.

    Liked by 1 person

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