1988 – California & Mexico trip + Favorite ’88 photos
This was the scene after the 30th Annual Grammys – the only Grammys I ever got to shoot.
Mixed messages………..have the great smile and the dastardly digit met?
For a while, every time I shot a show at NYC’s Cat Club, people would tell me about some guy who hung out there and supposedly looked just like me. News to me.
When I finally met him, I had someone take a couple of pix with my camera.
Aside from having beards and frizzy heads, I don’t see it.
From my site:
Jim (‘Profit’) and Tammy Faye (‘False’) Bakker adorn a NYC mailbox.
Looks like Jim has a weak bladder.
I had a chance to shoot 3 Guns N’ Roses shows AND do some offstage work with them in California in early 1988. I jumped at it. Go to bobleafe.com to see those pix.
I didn’t mind that the flight wasn’t non-stop because the one stop was in Denver, near where my pregnant sister and her husband lived, so they drove out to the airport for a short hello.
In the picture, I’m in a plane that’s about to turn onto the runway where other planes are waiting to take off, so I thought that was a cool shot to take – especially with the Rocky Mountains in the distance.
The first show was in San Diego, which meant that a quickie trip to Tijuana was in order (next 4 pictures):
The other 2 shows were in Anaheim, which was very convenient because it meant staying with my aunt and uncle again, as I had done in 1981.
Also in order was another drive north to San Francisco, including an overnight stay in Morro Bay, where gigantic Morro Rock (“The Gibraltar of the Pacific”) stands in the bay, 576′ tall. I had driven by Morro Bay in 1981 and always wanted to go back there to take some pictures. Here are 7 that I took:
This last picture, of course, is San Francisco:
How the accommodations there were acquired is a story in itself:
One day, I was dropping off monthly pictures at Circus magazine in NYC and someone there told me they received a letter addressed to me. It was from a teenage fan of the magazine from Pacifica, California (right below SF), who had seen my photo credit in the magazine every month and whose last name was the same as mine. There are many people named “Leaf” and other variations, but “Leafe” is rare, so she wanted to know if we might be related.
It turns out that we weren’t.
I had previously mentioned to her that I might be in her area soon and she later surprised the hell out of me by offering to put up me and my traveling companion in her house during my time in SF! She had already cleared it with her parents and they turned out to be as gracious as could be.
How many people are willing to open up their home to strangers for a couple of days AND drive them to the airport simply because one of them has the same last name? That was fairly mind-blowing.
So it was a great trip for shooting GN’R with the added bonus that a LOT of hotel money was saved.
Thank you Wendy, Mr. and Mrs. L., Aunt Marilyn and Uncle Billy!