A friend told me Peter Wolf of the J. Geils Band and director David Lynch were college roommates–can that be true?
It was a pairing stranger than Felix Unger and Oscar Madison, but for the 1964-65 academic year, Wolf and Lynch were roommates at the Boston Museum School of Fine Arts. The housing office wasn’t to blame: Wolf had moved to Boston from the Bronx without a place to live, and spent his first week in town sleeping in a flophouse hotel and the YMCA. On the first day of school, Lynch spotted him looking at “roommates wanted” notices on a school bulletin board, and invited him to share his small apartment. The furniture was provided by Lynch, which meant that they slept in bunkbeds: Wolf on top, Lynch on the bottom.
“I drove David crazy two ways,” Wolf told me. “I was always late with the rent, and I was very into progressive jazz at the time–I never stopped playing Thelonious Monk.” Both were studying painting, but Wolf was a devotee of German expressionism, while Lynch subscribed to abstract expressionism, so they had heated arguments about the two approaches. Wolf remembered the director of Eraserhead and Mulholland Drive: “David was a very mellow, very kind guy. But the days we spent together, we were all in a deep shadow of gloom. It was a very nihilistic period. And there were a lot of cockroaches.”
(Excerpted from the 2006 book Is Tiny Dancer Really Elton’s Little John?: Music’s Most Enduring Mysteries, Myths, and Rumors Revealed, published by Three Rivers Press, written by Gavin Edwards.)