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Jammin in the gym




1964 – 9 years old...the Beatles launched the English invasion..."Love Me Do/Please, Please Me" ... I convinced my parents that guitar lessons were crucial to my existence, but sadly, my rental guitar was abysmal. The strings were an inch off the fret board. Not only were F chords impossible, but they hurt!
This did not last long either, although I am and always be, a lifelong Beatles fan.
One more memory from 3rd grade-1963. A warm sunny afternoon in November; sitting at our desks, in class with Mrs. Christenson – the President has been shot.

1965 - I began drum lessons sometime in late winter or early spring. I can’t recall my motivation, although this time it was not due to the Beatles, never having been a Ringo fan. I played in the school band and had private lessons with my Aunt Joyce, who ran a music studio in Elmhurst with her husband. This time I stuck with it. Dad and Mom, I’m sure, were a bit leery of these phases. This time I had proved I could keep with it, and somehow, on Christmas morning, there it was.... a brand new chrome plated Ludwig snare!
Time to get up! (Greg and I were still at the age where we would wake on Christmas morning a wee bit before what grownups might consider a reasonable hour J
Flam-a-diddle; Par-a-diddle. Although not my eventual instrument, I really came to appreciate my background in reading rhythms as a guitar instructor many years later. Some people have great difficulty with time?

Actually, it is pretty close to:

Our first long vacation took place in the summer of 1965 - the New York World's Fair - the long way... Mom, Greg and I.
First stop - Buffalo; my father's sister, Sandy, lived there with her husband. Sandy did ballet and Bruce did high mathematics. I still have one of their Christmas gifts to me - a four-volume set of books titled - "The World of Mathematics", edited by James Newton. (I hope to finish reading it someday :)

Next stop - Cooperstown. The Hall. Can it be as wonderful as I recall?. Both the museum and the upper New York area. Utter tranquility. If you haven't been there, you should.

"Whoever wants to know the heart and mind of America had better learn baseball, the rules and realities of the game - and do it by watching first some high school or small-town teams..." - Jacques Barzun

What is unique about baseball, compared to other American sports, is it's history. From Abner Doubleday to Christy Mathewson to the long lineage of Yankee sluggers beginning with the Babe, Cooperstown enshrines the heroes as immortal. If a definition of immortal is never forgotten, then those ‘Boys of Summer’ are indeed immortal. Ken Burns baseball documentary is one movie I continue to watch once per year. I was a huge fan of the Chip Hilton books during this time as well.

In the fall, after we had seen the the Beatles movie “Help” at least once, Jack Curtis and I performed a lip synch version of "Another Girl" at Lincoln School for a "talent" show when I was in 5th grade. I played Paul. And there was a lovely young lady...
the Hollies were singing "Hey, Carrie Ann" that Spring. She was the recipient of my first…kiss…in DuPage woods?

Jack and I were British Invasion fans:

*social comment: during this period, top 40 radio had everything from Frank Sinatra, to Johhny Cash to Herb Alpert to....mayhaps I didn't particularly care for the older stuff, but I was exposed to a wide variety of music. Compared to today with the scientifical demographical pigeon-holing categoricalizing narrow-mindedness of the corporate planners. At least I could choose what I didn't care for.....

In April of 1966, we moved to Philadelphia....

note  1963 p2  note  1966  note  the Bands  note


Excellence is not an act...but a habit
- Aristotle

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