I thought I loved you. Then I read Could It Be Forever? My Story, a rehash of your original autobiography C’mon, Get Happy: Fear and Loathing on the Partridge Family Bus, and we broke up forever.
Side note: When the news about David Cassidy’s imminent demise was broadcast, I quickly ordered C’mon, Get Happy on Amazon for a mere $32. It never arrived. After Cassidy passed, the bookseller claimed the book was out of stock when I ordered it. The book now sells for at least 5 times what I was willing to pay for it, so I opted for the $5 Kindle version of Could It Be Forever, discounted because no photos were included.
Of course, I was one of those little girls with a mad crush on Keith Partridge in 1970; I was all of eight years old when the bus first made its appearance on TV. I had all the records, faithfully watched the show, even had a slumber party with a Partridge theme (it may have been my birthday – those details are fuzzy). I was all in. At least for the four years the comedy aired.
While listening to the news about the former teen idol’s critical condition, I became curious about what his life was like post-Bonaduce. I recalled that he posed in the buff for Rolling Stone in an attempt to make himself cooler, and that he had a popular Broadway and Vegas show, but that was about it. I wasn’t even sure he had a legit musical career until I picked up this book.
Yes, Cassidy spends a great deal of time talking about the program that made him a superstar, and yes, there are lots of references to sex and drugs and rock'n’roll. Lots of references to family, from dear old Jack, his father, to his stepmother, Shirley Jones, and his brothers, including Shaun, who briefly followed in his footsteps. But I knew most of those stories and was looking for something else: Was Cassidy a real musician?
I was surprised to find that Cassidy had friendships with the likes of John Lennon, Paul McCartney, even David Bowie. In fact, I’ve begun to wonder if "Fame" isn’t partially about Cassidy. It was co-written by Lennon and Bowie in 1975, just one year after Cassidy stepped out of the spotlight. Stranger theories have been suggested, so don’t discount this one!
Turns out Cassidy DID have a real recording career and while I am not a fan of that particular genre of music, there are plenty of people who are, including the millions of now-grown little girls who still hero worship David/Keith. After walking away from the circus of the ‘70s, he found a measure of success as a performer who actually wrote and recorded what HE wanted.
And then right in the middle of my good dream, this: At one of Cassidy’s last performances during his 1974 world tour, a fan was crushed to death in the mayhem. Certainly, Cassidy was not responsible for that, but it disturbed me to read that a live album of that very concert was released. In the book, he writes, “The world tour lasted nine months. It became nothing more than a love letter to everyone and everything I had experienced: the fans, the people who had supported me and the music. I could walk away from it at that point. And I’m glad that recording exists so that if I ever forget, I can go back and listen to it.”
My imaginary love affair ended right then and there.
Still, I respect Cassidy for writing the tell-all, and sharing himself with readers after years of avoiding the public eye, especially since 10 years later, he is now in that great green room in the sky. Breakin’ up is hard to do.