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April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review August 3, 2012/ 15 Menachem-Av, 5772

Two Rock and Roll Miracles

By Greg Crosby



http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | In a world of short attention spans, 24 hour news cycles, and celebrities who are lucky to get even 15 minutes of fame, it is remarkable that two rock and roll bands have not only withstood the test of time but in fact continue to record and perform in today's ever more fickle, cutthroat music industry for more than 50 years. The bands are The Beach Boys and The Rolling Stones.

It would be unusual for ANY performer to remain popular and relevant for over five decades, let alone two rock bands. The punishing physicality of rock and roll concert performances, the mental stress, and the free-flowing drugs and party atmosphere so prevalent in the recording business just about guarantees a shorter than normal life expectancy for rockers. In fact that has often been the case with so many, which makes the longevity of The Beach Boys and Rolling Stones such a miracle.

The Beach Boys were formed in Hawthorn, California in 1961 and I was the perfect age when "Surfin'" and then "Surfin' Safari" became hits on the radio the following year. As a 13 year-old Southern California kid the whole surfing music wave (pardon the pun) washed over me (sorry, I can't help myself). Like almost every other young teenage boy in my junior high school I started wearing plaid Pendelton board shirts, white Levis, and huarache sandals, imitating the Beach Boys look.

But it was the sound of The Beach Boys that really got me. Yes, they had the rock beat but it was their strong melodies and terrific vocal harmonies that pulled me in. The sound of The Beach Boys became my favorite kind of rock and roll music, it still is. Brian Wilson, Carl Wilson, Mike Love, Dennis Wilson, and Al Jardine were the seminal five, with David Marks, Bruce Johnston and even Glenn Campbell filling in at various times.

The up and down story of the group is well known. The Wilson Boys' abusive father, Brian's nervous breakdowns, the early deaths of Dennis and Carl, the fragmenting of the group and the court battles that lasted for years make up the dark side of The Beach Boys. But the amazing part is that with all the tumult, all the tragedies, the depression, the drugs, the lawsuits, and the infighting, The Beach Boys survive. They have come together again. Now in their seventies they have recorded a new best selling album, they are on tour performing for fans both old and new, and what's really great is that on stage and in interviews they smile at each other, they laugh, and you get the impression that they really care for each other. Summer is not over yet and The Beach Boys are still showing us how to have fun in the sun.

The Rolling Stones are something else again. They always seemed to me to be the dark side of the moon, The Beatles being the light side. The Stones were formed in London in 1962 with Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Brian Jones, Ian Stewart, Dick Taylor, and Tony Chapman. A bit later Bill Wyman and Charlie Watts came on board. The story goes that Stewart was kicked out of the band by manager Andrew Loog Oldham because he didn't have the same skinny long-haired look of the other guys.

It's surprising that any of The Rolling Stones are still alive given all we've been told of their abusive drug usage and crazy lifestyles. My personal theory on that is that a lot of what we've been lead to believe is simply an exaggeration. Not to say that these guys didn't do drugs or play hard, only that maybe they didn't do it as much as we may think. Just as Frank Sinatra didn't really smoke and drink as much as we thought. From what I've learned, Sinatra never inhaled the smoke from those cigarettes he always lit and he would nurse a drink to last all evening. For Sinatra it was all about the image.

The Rolling Stones never influenced my life as did The Beach Boys. I was never a fan of their music or their stage persona; they always seemed too raunchy, too loud, and too ugly for my taste. But then again I wasn't the typical teenager. I liked Dixieland Jazz, Big Band, Jolson, Crosby, Ella, Nat, and Perry. Melody, harmony, and uplifting, foot-tapping music were usually my choice. I never liked the screamers.

Nevertheless, The Rolling Stones have lasted for over 50 years. They never spoke to me, but they certainly have been saying something to an awful lot of people for a long time. The Beach Boys did speak to me, however, and have stayed with me to this very day. I bought their latest album and that's not all. I even bought myself a brand new Pendelton Board shirt!

Surf's up, dude.

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JWR contributor Greg Crosby, former creative head for Walt Disney publications, has written thousands of comics, hundreds of children's books, dozens of essays, and a letter to his congressman. A freelance writer in Southern California, you may contact him by clicking here.

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© 2008, Greg Crosby

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