Independent, Long Beach/California 25.04.1972
U.S. singer famous in Russia
NEW YORK - There's a tall, handsome American pop singer from Colorado and Arizona named Dean Reed who got sick in Moscow and went to a doctor.
"Take your clothes off," commanded the doctor.
"I hesitated, I didn't feel right about it," Dean Reed says now. "I was shy. I didn't want to do it."
"How would you feel? The doctor was a woman!
In fact, in 7 trips to Russia covering about 11 months, I never saw a male doctor. I felt very strange having a woman doctor examining me. I felt unusually naked and I blushed all over. And I know how the average American woman must feel when a male doctor she's never seen before starts probing around her!"
Dean Reed, 33, famous in South America, Italy and Russia, but almost unknown here, says many Soviet wives make more money than their husbands. Wives often initiate the divorces which outnumber American divorces. There are now ticket scalpers in Russia. Newsweek reported that sets for one of his jam-packed concerts in the Lenin Sports Palace went for as high as $48 black market.
"Somebody may have spent the rubles they'd been saving to buy some new boots," said Reed.
Hoping to be as famous here as in Russia, Reed confesses he's sort of a Tom Jones there, with police escort and all that. Two of his biggest numbers in Russia are "My Yiddisher Mama" and the Israeli folk song, "Hava Nagila."
"I explain in Russian what the songs mean. My own mother came to Moscow from Honolulu to visit me. I sang 'My Yiddisher Mama' to her - I think it's the most beautiful mother song ever written. The 16.000 people in the arena started crying and embracing, and they were bawling all over the place so loud that we had trouble resuming the show!"
Reed, a former Colorado dude ranch cowboy who now makes spaghetti Westerns in Italy, is the son of Cyril Reed, a retired math teacher living in Black Canyon, Ariz. He was married to a former Miss California, Patricia Hobbs.
From having spent so much time in the Soviet, he's been called a pet of the Kremlin but he says, "I accept no lable. I'm an artist with a social conscience. And anyway, after all those trips to Russia, I can't drink vodka but I confess I got to love caviar. I don't know what I'll be able to do about that back here at home!"