Beyond the Signature: Felix’s Music Comforted My Mom

By | September 18, 2022

It was the summer season of 1967 and my world on Reynolds Avenue wasn’t as enjoyable because it might have been.

My mom was not properly. She was failing. She would solely be with us for a number of extra months.

These had been unhappy instances for Dad and me. We needed Mother to be higher, nevertheless it simply would not be.

However we nonetheless managed to have a very good time. We laughed rather a lot. We made probably the most of our enjoyment of tv and radio – and the report participant.

On the time, I used to be shopping for nearly each album that got here out, desirous to hear repeatedly to those superb songs from these superb bands that had been altering the world in each means.

For probably the most half, Mother loved listening to those information nearly as a lot as I did. At a time when she was struggling to search out solace, music was one thing she actually liked.

In the future in the summertime of ’67. I had purchased a Younger Rascals album. I made a decision to hear and thoroughly place it on the turntable and sit in a chair in our entrance lounge. Mother was sitting in her favourite chair and he or she was simply attempting to relaxation. However she gave me the OK to play the report.

Now the Younger Rascals had a number of rock and roll songs – “Good Lovin’ for instance – however additionally they had a number of songs that had been simpler to take heed to. A few of these songs – “Groovin'”, “A Lovely Morning”, ” I’ve Been Lonely Too Lengthy” and “How Can I Be Positive” – my mother actually appreciated it.

She requested who sang these songs and I instructed her the band was known as the Younger Rascals. She requested me to play these songs once more, and I did.

Daily for weeks Mother requested me to play these songs. She was memorizing the lyrics and singing alongside. These songs introduced a number of consolation to a lady who was in nice want of consolation.

I can nonetheless hear him singing these songs and the smile on his face after they began and ended. I’ll always remember these days.

So when the FM Kirby Middle for the Performing Arts introduced that the Rascals that includes Felix Cavaliere and Gene Cornish Time Peace Tour can be coming to Wilkes-Barre on November 20, these days of their songs and my mother’s love for them got here again rapidly.

So I known as the Kirby Middle and requested for an interview with Felix Cavaliere, the lead singer of the Rascals and the man who wrote these songs. Felix accepted the interview and we chatted earlier this week.

Let me inform you, it was emotional for each of us. I instructed Félix why I needed to interview him – sure, to assist promote the present – however extra as a result of I needed to inform him how his songs comforted my mom a lot.

It was, as I mentioned, an emotional begin to the interview.

Félix instructed me he might relate to my story – he additionally misplaced his mom when she was in her 40s.

Lots of emotion was on the desk from the beginning.

We made it by means of the emotion and into the return of the Rascals and the reunion of Felix and his longtime buddy and unique Rascal Gene Cornish.

The 2 founders of the legendary rock ‘n’ roll band as soon as once more take the stage to proceed their legacy began 57 years in the past.

Felix, singer/songwriter, organist and lead guitarist Gene Cornish, Rock & Roll Corridor of Fame inductee, will take the stage in November for the primary time since 2018.

“We’re so grateful for the followers, it is for them,” mentioned Cavaliere, whose autobiography “Memoir Of A Rascal…From Pelham, NY to the Rock & Roll Corridor of Fame” was not too long ago launched.

Unbeknownst to each of us, Felix and I had a connection. After we spoke, it was like two outdated associates reuniting after too a few years.

“These of us who misplaced our mother and father at an early age get pleasure from life,” Felix mentioned.

So true.

“I really like this job,” he mentioned. “I really like the connection between music and other people like your mother – it is non secular.”

Félix instructed me that his mom had launched him into music by having him take piano classes the place he studied classical music solely.

“My mother noticed that I had expertise in me,” Felix mentioned. “For eight years, 3 times per week, I had a piano lesson the place I discovered the classics. My mum made certain I received to all my classes.

When Félix entered school, he mentioned he had by no means heard of rock and roll. His classmates had been speaking about it a lot that he determined to verify at house.

“I heard folks enjoying the identical instrument as me – like Ray Charles for instance – and I instantly turned a fan of the music and tried to play it that means,” Felix mentioned.

This realization led Felix to put in writing, sing and carry out all of these nice Rascals tunes.

“It is actually an incredible feeling to put in writing songs that folks need to purchase the information and pay to see you play these songs,” Felix mentioned. “It is very humiliating.”

Felix needed to know the place this expertise got here from – he thinks it is a divine connection.

“Completely it’s,” he mentioned. “Through the years, the music simply stored flowing, flowing, flowing.”

Felix mentioned his musical message has all the time been to face for peace, love, and happiness.

Her music introduced all of that to my mom – and he or she was comforted.

I am glad I had the chance to inform him.

Contact Invoice O’Boyle at 570-991-6118 or on Twitter @TLBillOBoyle, or by e mail at [email protected]