i am NOT going to be at the James Brown Soul of America Music Festival

This comes from the Headlines-I-Never-Thought-I’d-Write department.

Last week, a reporter from the Augusta Chronicle in Augusta, Georgia contacted me and asked if I was performing at the James Brown Soul of America Music Festival on Memorial Day down in Georgia.

For years, I’ve been confused with Will Wheaton, Jr., the well-known soul singer, so I told the reporter that he was probably confusing the two of us (it happens all the time, especially when James Brown or Russian stacking dolls are brought up, for some strange reason.) The reporter told me that the festival made it clear that it was Wil Wheaton, the actor, which is weird because until the reporter’s inquiry, I hadn’t heard about the festival at all. In fact,I was surprised
to hear that I’d been mentioned in association with this event, because
I am solidly B or even C List right now, and not exactly the kind of person who would be a big draw at the James Brown Soul of America Music Festival on Memorial Day down in Georgia like, say, Will Wheaton, Jr., the well-known soul singer.[1]

I forgot about it until today, when Google News sent me one of those "Hey, Wil, you wanted to know when you were in the news, so now you know, and knowing is half the battle," alerts.

The entire story requires outrageously annoying and intrusive registraton, but here’s the part that mentions me:

Also, actor Wil Wheaton, of Star Trek fame, said he had no plans to
come to Augusta. He seemed amused when he responded to inquiries last

"I respect and admire the godfather of soul as much as anyone else,
and though I’ve been known to get on up like a sex machine from time to
time, I will be paying tribute in my own not-coming-to-Georgia way."

The whole story left me with the impression that there are a lot of questions about the event, and it all seems kind of shady, so now I’m actually happy that I may have been mentioned in conjunction with the event, because it could be sort of edgy, now.

[1]Note that it’s common for event organizers to invite a ton of guests
to an event, knowing that not all of them will show up, and advertise
those guests as "invited" or "scheduled to appear." This often happens because organizers have ambitions that aren’t practical, and you should never attribute to malice that which can be attributed to something more benign, like an overly-ambitious promoter. I don’t know what the case is, here, but what’s important is that I have an italicized footnote to this entry.

35 thoughts on “i am NOT going to be at the James Brown Soul of America Music Festival”

  1. Back in the day, people often asked on the phone if I was related to Charles Mann, the famous football player (who was on the Redskins and made many pro bowl teams in the 80’s.) Definitely no relation, though. It used to annoy my Dad something fierce since he was a diehard Cowboys fan.

  2. I did a search today on itunes to see if you’d put Lakeside Shadow or your newer tune there.. instead and came up with a listing for Wil Wheaton Jr. I thought it was cool all the same.. but not what I was looking for.

  3. Great quote from you. And the footnote made me feel like I was reading something very imformative and *snatches for thesaurus*… notable. That’s probably not the right word, but considering a lot of this article was about the right or wrong Wil, I reckon you can forgive me. =D

  4. I hope he told you he was going to be using this “interview” for publication. Because if not, you could sue them 😉
    Especially if you get heat for the comment 😛
    Otherwise, LOVE IT!

  5. What do you think Peter Hartlaub from the San Francisco Chronicle meant when he wrote this?
    “If you ever have to ride the Wil Wheaton time machine to the land of ‘Ultraviolet,’ armed guard is definitely the worst of the three jobs to have.”

  6. Oops- that’s what I get for skimming articles… The quote makes a little more sense if you actually pay attention. An odd connection between Wil and “Ultraviolet”, though. (Although I do sort of see the resemblance.)

  7. I like that “edgy” quote!
    It reminds of a time a couple of years ago where I had been interviewed at an art gallery young associates event in vancouver for the Georgia Straight newspaper and I came off sounding a lot more interesting than I usually am at those events….. :-)

  8. You’ve GOT to go now, Wil. Maybe they’ll let you open for J.B. Imagine walking out in a ThinkGeek linux shirt and inter-spersing terms like “w00t” while reading passages from “Just a Geek.” That’s a nightmare worthy of the Apollo…Sandman comin’ to getcha!

  9. dude. rumors of swanky invites *and* italicized footnotes in your blog.
    who’s cooler than you? nobody, baby. nobody.

  10. Damn, that was the best chance I had to see you near Atlanta! Oh well, I will now have to wait for you to be at the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville.

  11. I wonder if the mistaken identity ever works in reverse …
    Does Will Wheaton get asked questions about “Stand by Me?” Or random hate email from Wesley bashers? Or invitations to Star Trek conventions?

  12. My question is, has anyone ever seen you and Will Wheaton Jr at the same time? In the same place? I think not. Come clean, kiddo. We’re your friends. You can tell us. And maybe we’ll buy your albums.

  13. The headline of this post should have been “What a Difference an L Makes”.
    Thanks for the link, where I found this:
    “In 1998 Will completed a project on his own label Platinum Bass Records. The CD entitled Consenting Adultz was released in the winter of 99. The CD is an erotic yet romantic 12 song set performed, produced, and written by Will.”
    Well no wonder you’re being mistaken for him.

  14. Now I’m dying to see who else picks up this story. The pull quote of Ebony magazine’s calendar of upcoming events (is that still being printed?).
    And because I am a twisted mestizo, I can just picture a half dozen brothers in Star Fleet uniforms showing up in Augusta…

  15. You think you’ve got it bad? My name is Mark Shields and I’m constantly contacted in lieu of the frequent Capital Hill Gang and CNN commentator Mark Shields. The fact that we share a lot of political ideology is cool, at least. I wish he’d get a bit more famous, however, as I’m not confused with him as often as I think I should be confused with him. That, plus my lack of invites to James Brown galas is sorely lacking as of late.

  16. You know, I’m no longer going to imbibe ANY beverages when I read your blog. Too many times I’ve come close to christening my keyboard and monitor with coffee or diet coke. It’s not that you’re funny. It’s that you’re f-ing funny as hell!
    I wonder if Wil Wheaton Jr. has ever gotten a call about attending a con?
    Ahh maybe the two of you can team up for a podcast…

  17. Wow. I work for a news organization in Augusta (not the Chronicle) that’s been covering the controversy surrounding the festival. I’ve heard some pretty crazy things, but this one takes the cake.

  18. wil,
    this entire post, and the article, has left me smirking-on-the-verge-of-busting-out-laughing-at-my-desk-at-work…
    the combination of you being mistaken for Will Wheaton, Jr., which I had never encountered before; the Augusta Chronicle article; your “edgy” line; and the last part of your footnote adds up to something that really touched my humour bone in just the right way today…
    I think I need to laugh out loud now…
    thanks for keeping this blog, whether at WWDN or in exile… i can’t believe it’s been almost five years now that I’ve been continuously reading this site…
    A Canadian in Chicago
    p.s. wil, after my fiancé and I get married at the end of July we are hitting the road to cover Route 66, from Chicago to L.A., for our honeymoon… any chance we could buy you a Guiness and share some laughs together once we get to L.A.? i know this sounds so fan girl, but really i don’t care… i’d rather ask and be shot down, then never ask and wonder if it might have been… maybe this could become a WWDN readers’ meetup, with you as the special guest… whaddya say?

  19. I work for The Augusta Chronicle, and signed up for a typekey account just so I could say that this post? Made. My. Day.
    And Wil? Your quote’s even funnier when you realize how conservative our paper is.

  20. Classic quote, Wil – thanks for posting it here.
    I’ve got it… instead of Augusta, why don’t you go to Savannah GA to do a one-man show. You could shave down the middle of your face, leaving half of your Mirror Universe goatee intact, and perform “Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil Wil Wheaton.”

  21. Well, you know, you both DO look A LOT alike. I’m sure it’s EASY to get the two of you confused.
    Umm… not really – but hey, atleast someone was talking about you and they knew who you were. That has to count for something, right?

  22. Sorry for going off-topic, but was there anymore to be said about the sci-fi gig?? It’s Monday, thought maybe you (Wil) are able to divulge more info.
    On-topic: seriously awesome quote. The idea that a paper doing a story about a James Brown Festival has a quote from Wil Wheaton, “of Star Trek fame”, just cracks me up.

  23. Haha, edgy. That’s great! I just started reading “Just A Geek” so I especially enjoyed that. :-)
    Also, was the “Waiting” audition from a couple years ago that you mentioned in the book the same “Waiting” that came out with Ryan Reynolds recently? If so, did it just take forever to get made? Or did they sit on it for a while? Just curious.
    Hopefully see you on the felt tomorrow night!

  24. Okay, but you’re still down for the 72nd Annual Emmett Cherry Festival in August right? I don’t want to have to redo those disco posters… ^_~
    Great quote, btw.

  25. I hadn’t been to your blog in a while, but when I read this post, I nearly fell over laughing… I can always count on your sassy self to make me smile, Wil. Good on ya. :-p

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