Rock and Roll

Yesterday I spent the best part of two hours feeling like a twelve year old.  Not because of some great surge of energy, or outlook or innocence, and certainly not because of botox (not yet anyway), but because I had lunch with my mother and it was as if I stepped back into a different incarnation of myself.  I had to remember several times that I’m a grown woman, with four children.  My mother, I believe, didn’t have a clue as to how I was morphing into a pre-teen right in front of her.  She was discussing seemingly unimportant details of our family’s life and history and my heart began to race.  How in the heck did this chord strike so deeply again?  It was an old story she was telling and yet I was living it as if for the second time, not long after the first.

She did notice, however,  the rash on my face and neck.  ‘Oh dear, what’s that?’  I had broken out and literally began to sweat.  ‘I got bitten, I think,’ and put the rash debate to bed.  You see, when you come from a close family with loving parents it is somewhat easy to justify mistakes that were made, things that were said, and try and move forward with acceptance.  I had a ridiculously storybook childhood and often feel like the character in one of Husband’s films where his middle-class, loving upbringing brought him no real angst or madness to draw upon, or rebel from, creatively speaking.  It’s hard to remain angry about a particular event that didn’t go my way knowing how much I was loved and cared for.  Especially now, being a mom myself and realizing the endless energy that goes into just trying to live each day successfully with one’s children.

So I kept my mouth shut, itched a bit more than normal that day, and moved on.  And I did so because of the huge upside that living in LA brings me in terms of support.  My eldest son has joined The School of Rock.  This organization inspired the Jack Black film and is essentially an environment for kids to rock out, get real with their music, create what they want from their music and then perform live at a paid gig.  Eldest son enrolled late in their rehearsal schedule and went from wanting to play guitar to performing lead vocals on half the songs in the set!

Having no idea if he could sing, I asked my family to come and support the gig.  I thought that seeing the family in the audience would at least make him feel good.  That translated to a  reservation for 25 and literally everyone showed.  We were seriously a fourth of the audience and my mom and siblings, nieces and nephews, hooted and hollered and cheered for two hours.  I also put it out there to some friends, who equally showed with huge bells on, and together we were all going to rock out regardless.

Sound-check.  They played a few chords and my son sang out a few bars of his first tune.  I was so nervous I burst into tears.  Right there, at the table, with a video camera, digital camera and IPhone camera all on standby, I started crying.  Then I looked across at cool Husband watching our son and saw that he was crying too!  For goodness sake, the way these moments grip our hearts.

I’m happy to report that all his guitar lessons paid off and he can indeed sing!  My sister found this particularly funny – as kids we would tap when we had ballet lessons, play guitar after our piano lessons, speak Spanish to our Hebrew tutor, and on it went.  After the show at Rusty’s Surf Ranch on Santa Monica Pier we all went home as it was late for a Sunday night.  My boys were filled with adrenaline so we did what any after-party occasion calls for and had cereal and bedtime stories.  Very rock and roll.

About Jennifer

Jennifer is from Beverly Hills and has lived between London and LA since 1994. She's been a writer for over 20 years in the world of film, tv, travel and magazines and has been a class rep eight times and counting...
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