Monday, June 15, 2009

Paul Shaffer: He could have been George Costanza

photoDavid Letterman's longtime bandleader Paul Shaffer has written a memoir. Titled We'll Be Here For the Rest of Our Lives: A Swingin' Show-biz Saga, the book will be published by Random House on Oct. 13.

Here's the publisher's blurb about the book:
"How does a kid go from a remote Canadian town at the tip of Lake Superior to the bright lights of Broadway and a gig leading the band on 'Letterman'? This book is Paul Shaffer's answer to that question. From playing seedy strip joints in Toronto, to his first legitimate job out of college -- which found him working with future stars (and friends) Gilda Radner, Martin Short, and Eugene Levy -- to being first musical director of the nascent 'Saturday Night Live' and helping to form the Blues Brothers, to being onstage every night with Dave and playing with the greatest musicians of our time, Shaffer has lived the ultimate showbiz life.

"Now, in this hilarious, entertaining, and candid memoir -- in which he dishes on everyone from John Belushi and Jerry Lewis to Mel Gibson and Britney Spears -- Paul gives us the full behind-the-scenes story of his life, from banging out pop tunes on the piano at the age of twelve to leading the band every night at the Sullivan Theater."

The New York Daily News offers one yummy tidbit. Shaffer "reveals he was offered the role of George Costanza before it went to Jason Alexander. Seinfeld handpicked Shaffer for the role and told him, 'There’s no audition ... You’ve got the part. Just call us back!'

"Shaffer never responded -- the music man says he was too busy to accept the role."

The book was written with David Ritz, who has collaborated with a wide range of music-biz celebs, including Don Rickles, Etta James, Priscilla Presley, Ray Charles, B.B. King and Grandmaster Flash.


  1. Santiago R. said...

    Wow, I didnt even know Paul could act that well. I mean, Ive seen him in some of the shows skits and The Tony Mendez Show, but never thought anything of it. Good for him.

    It should be an interesting read.

  2. Judd said...

    My childhood would have been very different if George Costanza had been played by Paul Shaffer.

  3. Anonymous said...

    A friend of mine spent time backstage occasionally at the Letterman show, working. She says Dave is very nice, Paul is consistently a jerk.

  4. Artoo23 said...

    I thought Howard Shore was the bandleader/musical director for the first years of SNL. Paul was piano/keyboard player in the band, and gradually started getting credited for special musical material and appearing in skits.