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Word Pictures

Assuming that each of you is familiar with the Rock and Roll legend Chuck Berry, I’ll relate a story about the power of word pictures.  In 1987, a documentary movie, recently on HBO, was filmed about Chuck Berry.  It was his 60th birthday celebration and was performed at the Fox Theatre in St. Louis.  His sixty years did not show as he played, sang and did his trademark “duck walk”.  For the event, his sidemen included Keith Richards and Bruce Springsteen, plus singers Linda Ronstadt, Little Richard and others.

The performances were interspersed with interviews with some of the performers, plus Roy Orbison and Jerry Lee Lewis.  Bruce Springsteen was asked, “What made Chuck Berry exceptional and often called the father of Rock and Roll?”  Springsteen described how he was incomparable as a lyricist, a poet with music.  Springsteen related how Chuck Berry wrote and cut a record called Nadine.  A segment of the lyrics included something like: “Nadine, Nadine, you know you’ll come back, straight to my coffee-colored Cadillac.”  Springsteen said, “I’ve never seen a coffee-colored Cadillac, but I sure know what it looks like.”

I believe this is another example of the mind creating images that oftentimes reality cannot match.

Sent to the CH Team on May 2, 2006

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Doc Counsilman: As I Knew Him

When James ‘Doc’ Counsilman, my coach, mentor and business partner for 25 years, died earlier this year at 83, friends and admirers chose different words to describe the man they knew. Inspiration is the word I choose. His coaching, discoveries and his leadership all left marks in the sport’s history; but I remember the man […]