Listen to the Beat

Remember that scene from 1980 film The Jazz Singer {one of my most favorite films}?

You know the scene, where Jess starts battling with the estrangement from his father while preparing for his big break on the Zany Gray TV show.  He and his backups, Bubba and the Four Brothers, are rehearsing the selection for Gray’s show, Jerusalem. The session goes from bad to worse. Jess is agitated and yells out to the band, “What’s happened to the groove?” When they try again, he screams, “”What’s going on! Hold it! Hold it! Hold it! What happened to the groove? What happened to the groove? What happened to the groove, guys?”

He then storms into the sound booth, has an argument with Molly, then heads out of the session without looking back … stiffing Gray … and driving off until his Mustang runs out of gas. He ultimately spends the next several months on the road.

But this isn’t about the movie. It’s about what Jess was hearing at that pivotal scene. You can see it in his eyes. You can feel it as he twirls his snapping fingers. His mind is listening to a different beat. It doesn’t have the drive or tempo and seems out of sync.

Well, for the past few years, that’s been me. I can relate to Jess.

A couple of years ago, I watched Hollie Cavanaugh perform Flashdance … What a Feeling on American Idol 11. I was a Hollie fan that year, but I remember thinking to myself the performance was just a little sedate from Irene Cara’s original sensual performance in the film {thanks to the dancing of Jennifer Beals, especially at the end of the movie}. I watched the movie again a few weeks ago. Lo and behold, the driving rhythm wasn’t as quick as my mind remembered.

Even now, as I listen to and sing along at least in my mind to the greatest hits of the ’50s and ’60s, I find myself a quarter or half step ahead of the beat … even that great, deep doo wop sound.

Oh well, my cardiologist says my heat beats to its own rhythm. So I guess it’s not a far stretch to think my ears and mind have their own beat as well.

THOUGH TO REMEMBER: Life is what happens when you are making other plans.

About wisdomfromafather

I'm just an ordinary guy walking along the journey of life.
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