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In Memory of John Lennon’s 76th Birthday!

October 09, 1940 one of the great voices of the world was born. John Lennon always spoke his mind and was a true voice that we needed so many years ago. His words are still valid today.

My entire life changed when I was twelve years old and the Beatles came to America in 1964 which opened up the whole world for me.  Their music turned me on so much that it was just like I had gone into another dimension. I understood the music and found it waking me up as though my previous twelve years I had been asleep.

The first time I saw their photograph John Lennon struck me as someone unique. My girlfriends all were in love with Paul McCartney. I was not in love with John, but when I heard him in interviews I loved his wit and I bought his first book, “In His Own Write” and found his humor to be the same as mine. The music of the Beatles was magic at that time, and it certainly lit a fire under me that has not extinguished to this day.

For those of you who were not alive when the Beatles blasted across America you will not easily understand the significance of their impact upon not only America, but the entire world.  They changed our culture. The Beatles arrived in America just under three months after the assassination of President John Kennedy. This assassination had brought America into a massive depression and the fresh lively spirit of the Beatles was exactly what the country needed to boost itself.

I was fortunate to see the Beatles perform live three times and luckily I was close to the stage the last time I saw them, and it was indescribable. It was a lasting memory. I followed the Beatles faithfully until their breakup and from there I continue to follow each one’s music. But as always John seemed to be expressing the feelings that I had.

John was always the most outspoken, and, at one point in 1966, he was condemned in the United States because of stating that the Beatles were more popular than Jesus.  He was not saying that they were greater than Jesus but just that their popularity extended farther. It was the truth at that time.  From then on he received death threats and was told that he would be assassinated during their 1966 United States tour.  This is one of the main reasons the Beatles stopped performing live.

Fame was a great pressure on John, and he looked for other avenues to explore having conquered the world.  He discovered LSD and used it to open up his creativity.  From there he discovered meditation and went to India to practice and learn from a master.  He met Yoko Ono, and they fell in love even though they were both married at the time.  He felt Yoko was his soul mate, and they were together until the end of his life.

They started a movement for peace and love.  He gained new world recognition for his peace movement and his views against all wars.  He expressed his views through his music and many people paid attention.  His goal was to have people get along and follow the path of love and peace.  For a time John went into seclusion, but in 1980 he was making a comeback with a new album, the first in five years, and ready to get back into his many causes.

I want to remember all that he did in his short 40 years.  He definitely kept me aware of what was going on in the world through his music and his peaceful demonstrations.  He gave a voice to the consciousness that so many were feeling and unable to find the words or ways to express it.  John did.

Each year new people discover John Lennon for the first time.  In Havana, Cuba, they have a wonderful bronze statue of John Lennon sitting casually on a park bench as though he is observing those who pass by.  Recently a teenager asked me if I knew who John Lennon was. I just had to smile at that question.

It’s hard to believe it’s been 36 years since John was assassinated, but his legacy will live forever and that speaks greatly for the man. Because John was only 40 years old when he died he will always be remembered young and I wonder what he would have been like at 76 years of age. He still would have been turning out fabulous music and art, just as Paul McCartney, Ringo, and George Harrison have done throughout the years.

I continue to listen to the Beatles and John Lennon’s music and always enjoy it. I am thankful that I lived in the most exciting time there was the 1960’s and I was able to experience Beatlemania full on.

So Happy Birthday John and thank you for everything you gave us. You will always live in our hearts.

With love,
Cherokee Billie

Happy 74th birthday Paul McCartney!

Paul guitar

On June 18, 2016 Paul McCartney turns 74 years old.

It just seems like “Yesterday” that I was twelve years old and watching the Beatles perform live on the Ed Sullivan show. 52 years later I am still a Beatlemanic and proud of it!

Paul McCartney is listed as the most prolific songwriter in history. His first collaborations with John Lennon were remarkable. The two of them had a wonderful chemistry together and proved it over and over. The impact the Beatles made on the world cannot be fully understood by those who were not there at the time. I always feel that my life was in black and white and did not become filled with colors until the Beatles. That’s the most simplistic way I can express what they did for me.

When the Beatles disbanded Paul McCartney took a much needed break from the world and retreated to his sheep farm in Scotland for a few years to recover from everything he had been through over the last ten years.

When he reemerged he came back with forming his own group “Wings” along with his wife Linda Eastman. This band had countless hits and Paul proved that he was more than just a pretty face.

One of the things that I admire the most about the man is the way that he lives his personal life. He was a very loving husband for almost 30 years until the passing of Linda. He kept his family close to him at all times and none of his children have ended up disastrously. They all have their own careers and are quite successful away from Paul.

I am happy that he has found a wonderful woman, Nancy Shevell, to share his life with.

He is always a gentleman and never has a bad word to say about anyone. He always shows love and appreciation to his fans because he knows they’re the reason for his success. His talents go way beyond rock and roll music as he has written operas and directed several short films.

No wonder the Queen made him Sir Paul McCartney.

I watched a live performance he did recently and this man can still Rock and Roll better than anybody out there. Please continue the wonderful work that you do Paul, because we certainly appreciate it.

Wishing you the very best on your birthday and always. You will always be Paulie to me.

With love,
Cherokee Billie

Click Here To Read My Tribute To The Beatles

Celebrating John Lennon’s 75th Birthday

NYC copia

My entire life changed when I was twelve years old and the Beatles came to America in 1964 which opened up the whole world for me.  Their music turned me on so much that it was just like I had gone into another dimension. I understood the music and found it waking me up as though my previous twelve years I had been asleep.

The first time I saw their photograph John Lennon struck me as someone unique. My girlfriends all were in love with Paul McCartney. I was not in love with John, but when I heard him in interviews I loved his wit and I bought his first book, “In His Own Write” and found his humor to be the same as mine. The music of the Beatles was magic at that time, and it certainly lit a fire under me that has not extinguished to this day.

For those of you who were not alive when the Beatles blasted across America you will not easily understand the significance of their impact upon not only America, but the entire world.  They changed our culture. The Beatles arrived in America just under three months after the assassination of President John Kennedy. This assassination had brought America into a massive depression and the fresh lively spirit of the Beatles was exactly what the country needed to boost itself.

I was fortunate to see the Beatles perform live three times fortunately I was close to the stage the last time I saw them, and it was indescribable. It was a lasting memory. I followed the Beatles faithfully until their breakup and from there I continue to follow each one’s music. But as always John seemed to be expressing the feelings that I had.

John was always the most outspoken, and, at one point in 1966, he was condemned in the United States because of stating that the Beatles were more popular than Jesus.  He was not saying that they were greater than Jesus but just that their popularity extended farther. It was the truth at that time.  From then on he received death threats and was told that he would be assassinated during their 1966 United States tour.  This is one of the main reasons the Beatles stopped performing live.

Fame was a great pressure on John, and he looked for other avenues to explore having conquered the world.  He discovered LSD and used it to open up his creativity.  From there he discovered meditation and went to India to practice and learn from a master.  He met Yoko Ono, and they fell in love even though they were both married at the time.  He felt Yoko was his soul mate, and they were together until the end of his life.

They started a movement for peace and love.  He gained new world recognition for his peace movement and his views against all wars.  He expressed his views through his music and many people paid attention.  His goal was to have people get along and follow the path of love and peace.  For a time John went into seclusion, but in 1980 he was making a comeback with a new album, the first in five years, and ready to get back into his many causes.

I want to remember all that he did in his short 40 years.  He definitely kept me aware of what was going on in the world through his music and his peaceful demonstrations.  He gave a voice to the consciousness that so many were feeling and unable to find the words or ways to express it.  John did.

Each year new people discover John Lennon for the first time.  In Havana, Cuba, they have a wonderful bronze statue of John Lennon sitting casually on a park bench as though he is observing those who pass by.  Recently a teenager asked me if I knew who John Lennon was. I just had to smile at that question.

It’s hard to believe it’s been 35 years since John was assassinated, but his legacy will live forever and that speaks greatly for the man. Because John was only 40 years old when he died he will always be remembered young and I wonder what he would have been like at 75 years of age. He still would have been turning out fabulous music and art, just as Paul McCartney, Ringo, and George Harrison have done throughout the years.

I continue to listen to the Beatles and John Lennon’s music and always enjoy it. I am thankful that I lived in the most exciting time there was the 1960’s and I was able to experience Beatlemania full on.

So Happy Birthday John and thank you for everything you gave us. You will always live in our hearts.

Worldwide he is loved.  His legacy will never be forgotten.

I love John,
Cherokee Billie

Your Words Have Power!

open-your-mouth-only-if-what-your-are-about-to-say-is-more-beautiful-than-silence

It’s important to pay attention to what you are saying on a daily basis.  Words have power not only to someone else, but also to you, your subconscious mind, and the universe.  Your words will come back to you because your subconscious mind is always listening to what you say.

Make an effort for one day to speak only words that are filled with peace and love.  Do that and see the effect this has on those around you and yourself.  The more you speak of peace and love the more we can make this world a better place.

Open your mouth when your words are more beautiful than silence.

“If someone thinks that love and peace is a cliche that must have been left behind in the Sixties, that’s his problem. Love and peace are eternal.” John Lennon

Many blessings,
Cherokee Billie

Visit CherokeeBillie.com

From Darkness Emerges The Light

Each New Year brings with it the hope that things will be better. This hope pulls many of us through difficult situations.

The beginning of this year has started out with a great deal of violence in Paris France, due to terrorist acts. This is not just a physical attack, but a spiritual one. There are many dark negative forces trying to pull down the light. Fear comes from a dark place and these energies feed upon people’s fear.

It is with great pleasure to see so many gathering together in unity and sharing their hopes and the light against negative forces. Millions attended the rally along with many world leaders in response to last week’s terrorist attacks in Paris against Charlie Hebdo magazine and other victims.

Remember whatever you are going through in this world that you are in a battle! The battle is to continue to be a Light Worker and not be sharing the darkness.

Never give in to the Negative forces! Continue to call upon the light for the entire world and yourself. It is our job to keep the light going.

I love the spirit of the people in France and the way they have rallied against the negative forces that want to destroy their life.

It was a beautiful moment yesterday January 12, 2015 when the people of France joined together and sang “Imagine.” John Lennon’s message of peace and hope lives on. We are not just Dreamers-We are joining together as One!

Many blessings,
Cherokee Billie

CherokeeBillie.com

Elvis Presley’s 80th birthday!

Elvis Presley in 1969

Elvis Presley in 1969

80 years ago, January 08, 1935, Elvis Presley came into this world. He certainly shook it up forever. I remember being five years old and seeing him the first time he was on the Ed Sullivan show. I stood in the middle of the living room dancing much to the delight of my family. My mother loved him from the moment she saw him because he came from a poor southern upbringing just like her. You can say from that moment on I was a rock and roll fan.

In 1969 Elvis made his big comeback in Las Vegas.   My best girl friend and I saw him perform the very first week at the International Hotel. He was really on top of his performance in 1969. Dressed in an all black karate suit he came on stage without all the glitz, sparkle, and glamour and just rocked the house.

In 1969 one of my best friends was in the marines and on the weekends he would bring his buddies to my apartment and they would play music and different games. I will never forget this one young man who kept playing my album “Elvis 68” over and over again one weekend. The song he would play the most was, “If I Could Dream.” It is a powerful song that Elvis felt was his message to the world about how it could change if it wanted to. He went to Vietnam and never made it back. To this day when I hear that song I still remember that young man.

I continued to see him perform in Las Vegas over the years and his voice was always outstanding, but there was a change in him and I did not feel him connecting to the audience. Little did I know of his troubles.

Outside of seeing Elvis perform on stage the closest I came to a connection with him was through his medical doctor. I was in Las Vegas fall of 1976 and had been sick for several years. I call the hotel and asked for reference for a doctor. They recommended I see Dr. Elias Ghanem. I took a taxi from the hotel because I was so weak I could hardly walk. The office was very impressive. It was brand new and decorated in a colonial style-all white and gold inside and out. As I arrived at the front desk the receptionist gave me the usual paper work to fill out. Once I had finished the paper work I was taken into Dr. Ghanem’s office to wait for him. I sat down in front of his desk. Right next to his desk was a large wreath in the shape of a guitar made out of white carnations. It was from Elvis Presley! As I looked around the office I noticed photographs on the wall of a Middle Eastern good-looking man standing next to Ann Margaret, another with Glenn Campbell, and of course with Elvis Presley. Dr. Ghanem must be the doctor to the stars.

He entered the office with an air of grace. It was as though he floated rather than walked. He was in his early 40’s extremely handsome, black hair beautifully styled hanging below his ears, wearing a white smock, and huge gold rings with diamonds on every finger. He could have been a movie star. He shook my hand and sat down at his desk. I was intimidated by his incredible good looks. “Please, tell me about your medical history,” he asked me.

I gave him an outline of the last three years and all the doctors I had seen who were mystified by my problems.

“If you will stay here in Las Vegas for three weeks, I guarantee you I will find what’s wrong with you. Can you do this?”

Looking at his brown confident eyes I felt I had found the right doctor. “Yes, if it means ending this terrible pain.” He busied himself setting up a schedule of tests for me to undergo. I went back to the hotel and telephoned my mother telling her about meeting Elvis Presley’s Doctor and how he felt he could find the answers for me. She was very happy. She thought Elvis Presley was a good old Southern Boy and if the doctor was good enough for him, he was good enough for me. She was going to fly up to Vegas and join me since I had to be hospitalized for some of the testing.

Dr. Ghanem treated me like royalty. He made sure my mother and I got free passes to every show in Vegas. He even arranged for one of his employees to escort us. Some of the tests were very hard on me and I didn’t feel like going out often. My mother went home after a week while I continued the tests. At the end of the three weeks he had found the problem and I had to have surgery.

It was a painful operation and afterwards when the doctor would come to see me I would ask if he could get Elvis to visit me in the hospital. At the time, 1976, Elvis was performing in Las Vegas. I begged because I thought it might be the only chance I would ever have to meet Elvis. Unfortunately he did not bring Elvis to the hospital. Later I realized Elvis was in no condition to meet many people.

I felt a great loss when he passed in 1977. He was so young and so much ahead of him. He lives on through his music and movies. The world was never the same after Elvis Presley. He definitely made a major impact that lasts even now. Not bad for a poor southern boy.

Gone but never forgotten and he always will be the King of Rock And Roll! John Lennon once said, “Before Elvis there was nothing.” He of course was referring to Elvis’s music. I am enclosing my favorite song “If I Can Dream” by Elvis Presley.

All I can say in summing up this little memoir is that I am glad that I lived to experience so many great musicians in my lifetime. There’s no question that Elvis Presley is the King of Rock And Roll. You will never be forgotten Elvis.

Please share your memories and thoughts about Elvis.

Happy birthday in Heaven Elvis,
Cherokee Billie

CherokeeBillie.com

43 Years Since Jim Morrison Died.

43 Years Since Jim Morrison Died. Click picture to read tribute article
“I see myself as a huge fiery comet, a shooting star. Everyone stops, points up and gasps, “Oh look at that!” Then- whoosh, and I’m gone…and they’ll never see anything like it ever again… and they won’t be able to forget me- ever.” Jim Morrison

Jim Morrison certainly had a clear vision of his life. He was born December 08, 1943, and passed away July 03, 1971. For those who may not know he was a singer, songwriter, philosopher, and poet. He is most famous for his work with the musical group The Doors. I have traveled the world, and, no matter what language, if I sing a few verses of “Light My Fire”, everyone knows that song, and they always smile.

He did not play any musical instruments, but he heard all of his songs in his head. Then he would hum the tune to the other musicians in The Doors, and they would compose what he heard in his head.

At the young age of 21, Jim Morrison and Ray Manzarek formed the group The Doors. Within one year they had a recording contract and shot to the top of the rock and roll world with the song “Light My Fire” in the summer of 1967. From there everything they recorded was always on top of the rock and roll charts.

Jim never sought fame and always considered himself first and foremost a poet. As the money came pouring in, the rest of the group started buying fancy cars and houses. Jim did not care about material possessions. He lived very simply. All he usually had with him was his clothes and books. He was an avid reader and never was without a book in his hand. He lived in $10.00 a night motels. He tried to have a car, but every car he ever had he ended up wrecking. He finally gave up on cars.

He wrote four poetry books and paid to have them published. The thing he was most proud of was his books.

Jim was the first rock star to ever be arrested on stage during a performance. This happened December 9, 1967 in New Haven, Connecticut. He was booked on charges of indecency, public obscenity, disturbing the peace and resisting arrest. Before the concert Jim was backstage making out with a girl. A police officer spotted them and said they had to leave. Jim told the officer he was in the band. The cop got pushy with Jim. Jim tried to push him away and then the cop maced him. .

Jim still went on stage and performed the concert. During the last song Jim started to tell the crowd about what happened backstage. The cops shut the music down and came directly onstage to arrest him. From that time onward the police were always looking for an excuse to come after Jim.

Unfortunately his fame could not be contained and it took over his life. He enjoyed many of the perks, but did not like losing his privacy, and found ways to get lost in the crowd. He was an alcoholic and drank mass amounts of whiskey a day. No one could control him, and things went down hill when he was accused of exposing his penis in front of an audience at a rock concert in Miami Florida. He was arrested and faced Federal prison time for lewd lascivious behavior, two misdemeanors for public profanity, two for public exposure and one for public drunkenness. No one could prove that he did such a thing, and, considering how many photographs were being taken nonstop at the concert, it is highly unlikely that it happened because there is no proof.

Because he was so famous and considered a hippie, the courts were going to let him have it full on. For that reason he decided to take a break from everything and go to Paris to see if he could lose his identity. The pressure of facing prison time was more than he could handle. He found no matter where he went he was known. It must have seemed like there was no escaping for him.

The official cause of his death in Paris is from a heart attack. No one knows for sure, but the bottom line is he did die at a young age having changed the face of rock and roll. He has never been forgotten. In fact his fame has grown, and he is considered a rock legend. His estate brings in millions of dollars a year. Every year young people discover the work of Jim Morrison and become fans. Just like he said no one would ever forget him and that was very prophetic.

I saw The Doors perform at the Los Angeles Forum in 1968 at the height of their fame. I had always liked their music, but I was not a big fan of Jim Morrison. At this particular concert he set on the edge of the stage and read poetry for 45 minutes. I was sitting in the floor section right in front of the stage and people kept lighting sparklers and matches and sending them flying at the stage screaming, “Sing Light My Fire.” I had to keep covering my head to keep from getting burned. Finally the group did play Light My Fire and afterwards left the stage. Having lived in Los Angeles and seen every major group like the Beatles, Jimi Hendrix, The Rolling Stones, and many more, I considered it the worst concert I had ever seen.

I continued to buy every album The Doors made. The songs were powerful, and I really enjoyed their music. I knew I would never waste my time going to see another one of their concerts.

I was in Santa Monica, which is right next to Venice California and one of Jim’s favorite cities, when I heard that he had died. It was sunset, and, as I watched the sun go down at the ocean, I kept thinking about what a terrible waste and it had only been a few months since Jimi Hendrix and Janis Joplin had died at the age of 27. Ironically, Jim died on the same date as Brian Jones, of The Rolling Stones, who had died in 1969. Jim wrote a poem for Brian Jones right after his death called, “Thinking of Brian Jones While Sitting in Los Angeles.”

Jim Morrison lived his life as a free spirit and chose not to be tied down to the conventions of the day. He was a loner and his idea of what a good place to go to relax was a topless bar next to the office of The Doors or his favorite hole in the wall Mexican restaurant in Venice California. He never had an entourage nor did he have security. He walked the streets of Venice and Hollywood freely. He proved you could be a superstar and still live in whatever way you wanted.

His being free is what disturbed so many people including the law and the government. The powers that be do not like when someone shows them what true freedom is.

I cannot imagine any current musical artist choosing this type of life. This is what sets Jim Morrison apart from so many of the others. It is sad that the music world today is nothing more than just commercialism. I am thankful that I was around in the 60’s to see some of the greatest creative artists express themselves freely. It was a wonderful time to be alive.

I am glad Jim Morrison shared his talent with the world. He will never be forgotten.

I will leave you with this final thought from Jim Morrison.
“I like people who shake other people up and make them feel uncomfortable.”

Thank you Jim for all you left us,
Cherokee Billie
CherokeeBillie.com

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