A Few Days Before It All Ended: October 31st - The Story
I've made a point to wait for a little bit amidst all the hoopla that is currently going on with the Britney and Kevin divorce to write about what happened on the night of October 31st when we attended Kevin's album release party here in Los Angeles. About a month prior to the event, I was approached by Britney's management to create a promo on WoB for Kevin's album release. It was perfect because we were going to be able to combine it with WoB's 6th Anniversary celebration. As you all know, two winners were going to be selected to get to meet Britney and Kevin that night. Cameron Kepford from Iowa won, and him and his friend flew to Los Angeles before the winners were announced just in case they won. I'd like to add a note here, Cameron maxed out his credit card to fly him and his friend here, after all, they were going to get to meet Britney Spears, a dream of theirs that had been inside of them for almost 7 years.
We arrived to Sunset/Gower studios where the party was held, and we were one of the first people to arrive. It was an exclusive guest list only event sponsored by a private label social networking company. Britney's dad was hanging out in the line to later quickly enter the side door which everyone was let in through. The party in itself was really well produced. There were several open bars throughout the establishment as well as an entire assortment of food for everyone. The doors opened at 11 pm. I had initially been told by one of Britney and Kevin's managers that we were going to do the meet and greet first thing that night. The party hosted over 500 people, and there were just two people overseeing it all. It was really hard for me to get on the phone with them because they were so busy. Finally, I spotted them and checked in with them. They told us to wait around and that they were going to come and get us when Britney and Kevin were ready. Granted, nobody knew at this point that a few days later, Britney was going to serve Kevin with divorce papers. Paris Hilton was strutting around the bathrooms with her high profile friends and Cameron and his friend were excited to take pictures with them. At one point, we saw Britney in the VIP area that had a bar inside, sipping on a drink and talking to some people. She was wearing a pink wig and large glasses obviously appearing in disguise. She exited the VIP area, walked right past us and exited through an emergency exit door with some people. At that point we were all really excited cause we knew that at any point, one of Britney's managers were going to come and get us.
About an hour later, they came up to us and told us that Kevin was ready to greet us. We were like, OK....so, we went over and Kevin was hanging out by himself sipping on a drink, having a smoke and standing against a wall. One of the managers took us to him and the contest winners got to meet him and take some pictures. Carolina and I did the same. We then asked them to let us know when Britney was going to be ready, and they told me to keep my cell phone on stand by.
That is when the night started to go sour....I felt that even though her managers were personally nice as people, the attitude that was posed towards the importance of us being there, and the significance of what WoB had done to get this contest advertised all over was returned with a very nonchalant attitude and very little importance. I personally felt like a fool because my only interest at that moment was to live up to everyone's word and get the contest winners to meet Britney. Time passed and I heard nothing from management. We waited by the exit door which would take us up to the second floor of the sound stage where Britney was allegedly hanging out, and after another hour of waiting, I told everyone to stay put and off I went to try to find management. When I finally got a hold of them, they told me that Britney had already left and that they were sorry, but that there was nothing they could do and that they evidently could not, and I quote 'force Britney to do something she didn't want to do'.
At that point, without knowing what was about to happen a few days later, I felt like I got slapped in the face because no matter what was going on, if Britney would have cared to honor her commitments, she would have given herself the 5 minutes to meet the contest winners. That was the promise, and it failed to deliver. Everyone was obviously understanding, but without a doubt crushed inside that the meet and greet did not happen. The winners from the official site which were nowhere to be found, were not able to meet her either.
Before that happened, I got a chance to come up to Kevin and talk to him for a while. Guess what the conversation starter was? -- 'Hey Kev, can I bum a smoke?'. Earlier when I had met him he had expressed how excited he was to finally meet me because he had heard so much about me. I felt compelled to at least try to feel him and out and see where he was at. I have to say, right then and there, he looked bummed and miserable, like something was bothering him. He was somewhat vulnerable and expressed to me how he was tired of being judged and hated based on the fact that he was Britney's husband, and that all he wanted was a shot like everyone else. We conversed for about 10-15 minutes and when one of the managers saw that we were chatting, Carolina and I were quickly offered a drink. I basically told him that, no matter if he was Britney's husband or not, what eventually would matter was going to be the quality of his music, and that if the music was good, he would get a shot at it. Without any bias, I have to say that Kevin as a person, is a pretty nice guy, very humble and easy going. I almost felt bad for him because after all, it's not like he went out seeking to marry a Britney Spears. It was the other way around. I saw a man standing in front of me who basically had his entire life destroyed and spit on because of who he married, no matter what anyone says, that is the truth, and looking at things from the core, that will never be his fault.
I'm a music business alumni, so, I obviously read album reviews all the time and have been doing so for many years, every week. The day after the party when the album reviews began cavorting throughout the Internet, I realized that they were the worst of its kind. I had never read worse, and that's when I knew that it would be the end. His tour went sour, Britney files for divorce, and everything just ended right there I guess.
I understood why Britney was probably not in the mood to meet any fans that night, the problems she was having being around Kevin were affecting everyone involved, whether it was management or us. I am really happy that Britney freed herself from what was continuously pulling her down the drain, although I personally have nothing bad to say about Kevin, I just don't think that Kevin was the right element that Britney needed in her life, although to her, for 2 years, it was.
That's when I would always put myself in Britney's position. She was sucked into the machine of the industry and at the end of the day, when she met Kevin, she seeked a way to feel like a normal person, get away from all the bullshit, and just marry a simple person who had not seen the world and was the complete opposite of her, a person that she could live with through his eyes, as she mentioned in Chaotic.
2-3 years later, and with two kids now, it seems as if things are back to normal, but are they?. Larry Rudolph is now back as her manager and it seems like Britney's is going to have another go at it. The speculation amongst the industry though is if enough damage has been done. I thought that was the case for a very long time, but I realized quickly that Britney made two rather important career decisions less than 48 hours apart from eachother, divorcing Kevin and giving Larry a call. Granted, they had not spoken for over two years.
So what really happened? What made Britney do what she did? I can obviously only give my opinion from a business point of view rather than personal. You've heard me say this before, and I'll say it again. I think that a combination of Kevin's downfall together with unequipped management led her to want to break out of it all and go back to where she was before Kevin.
All we can do now is hold on and watch what's going to happen next. I'll bet you all my lucky dollars though, that she's finally on the right track again, thanks to Larry. I've already spoken to him and he's told me that WoB is going to be used as an integral part of her comeback, so I'm excited to be a part of that, with all of you fans of course!
Enough talk ! I gotta catch some Zzzz's. I will be E-mailing all the other 9 winners within a day or two with your prizes and shipping info. I'm out !
Written by Ruben