The George Towner | Karen Feld
Marvin had an engaging personality and a quick and delightful sense of humor. Over the years, our friendship developed. He was intellectually curious and politically concerned. He spent time in Washington after he was named the first Principal Pops Conductor for the National Symphony Orchestra. Although his main residence was in New York, he bought a house around the corner from mine in Georgetown. But he still preferred to stay a few blocks away at the Four Seasons Hotel where he had a tuned grand piano moved into his suite so he could write. And presidents from both parties frequently invited Hamlisch to perform his numerous hits at The White House. He usually spontaneously incorporated some special material as well. He liked Washington and once told me that the Lincoln Memorial was his favorite monument. He said he could look at the stone, read the words and "feel the man."
I first met Marvin through a mutual friend some 35 years ago at the Westbury Music Fair in New York where he was performing. We were introduced in his dressing room before the show. Marvin seemed to take an immediate liking to me. I found him smart, funny and real, but he just wasn't sexy. In fact, he was outright "nerdy." After all, we were both in our twenties - he, a few years my senior-- and sex appeal was important in those days.