Home  |  News  |  Tour  |  Charts  |  Board  |  Archive  |  Shop  |  Links  |  FAQ  |  Contact  

 Search Hercules News
Back to News Archive

Gotta Get A Meal Ticket
Wednesday, August 18 1999

Written by Reggie Zippo.

On my "Yes, I Am A Reg Head" webpage, I reported on the events surrounding the October 3, 1998 concert that EJ performed at in Orlando, Florida. To say the least, I was in total awe of the entire event. Well, who wouldn't be? In that article, "Yes, I am a Reg Head", I mentioned an old, red catering bus that was parked in the loading dock area of the arena. I made light of the large cans of baked beans that could be seen stacked on one of the shelves inside the bus. To an average EJ fan, this might not have been an interesting topic to mention for an EJ concert review. Others, however, thrive on every little piece of information that they can get their hands on. So, the mention of that bus may have sparked an interest in someone. So, for what it's worth, here is some information about the company that caters to EJ's entourage whenever they tour Florida.

Schmooze Incorporated, which operates mainly in Florida, was created with a $13,000 investment in 1995. The owners, brothers David and Christopher Gourdine and partner Dave Burns, are from Clearwater, Florida. They converted a 1978 school bus into a fully functional meals-on-wheels catering business that is highly regarded among the many celebrities who tour Florida. In addition to EJ's entourage and roadies, Schmooze has also catered events for Billy Joel, Rod Stewart, Bonnie Raitt, The Rolling Stones, Robert Plant, and Jimmy Buffett, to name just a few. David, 34, handles the business end of the company, while Christopher, 32, oversees the meal preparations. Dave orchestrates the dining room setup and their main chef, Chris Hall, serves up a wide variety of tasty meals. The meal prices are based on the chosen menu and how far they have to drive to get to the concert. Typically, Schmooze charges $5 for a cold breakfast, $8 for a hot breakfast, $11 for lunch, and $16 to $20 for dinner (per person of course). They are also called upon to serve midnight snacks from time to time. Elsewhere in the USA and the rest of the world, most of EJ's concert caterers prepare the meals in advance. Schmooze has gained an advantage for repeat business by preparing everything fresh and on location. Direct contact with the celebrities does occur, but not as often as one would think. When David, Christopher, Dave, and Chris do encounter people like EJ, however, they never break any of the strict rules among the backstage help. Don't ask for a photo or signature and don't look at them too long. I can tell you right now that I would definitely break all three of those rules!

So, next time you go to an EJ concert, whether it be in Florida or in any other part of the world, take notice of what is happening behind the scenes. You too may find something like an old red catering bus to add to the memory of the concert. And, if you do see that red bus, be sure to say hello to David, Christopher, Dave, and Chris. In the meantime, Take care and have a happy Captain Fantastic day!

Back to Headlines

© 1997-2017 by HERCULES International. Hercules is not affiliated with Elton John`s management or the Elton John Aids Foundation.  
Please note that this site has been discontinued on March 31, 2017 and will not be updated anymore.