John Scalici '82
“Get Rhythm!” is an odd anthem for one who felt out of place in high school…. Or maybe not.
When asked why he attended John Carroll, John’s classic tongue-in-cheek reply “I had no choice - Catholic, Italian and a St. Rose graduate” gives one an idea of his ability to make others feel at ease. His days at John Carroll were awkward at best; struggling with fitting in led to being easily led. Today he realizes that the frustration and anxiety he experienced has helped him identify with many that he works with.
Today John is cool - how many middle-aged men get to ‘play’ drums for ‘work’? Who among us can lead a corporate retreat one weekend and then head to a youth detention center the next and be successful in both environments?! So, what led to this change?
While he dabbled in sports at John Carroll, he does credit the O’Hare brothers, Crosby and Brian, with instilling a love of working out. This self-described “closet drummer” was, however, addicted to drumming off campus. One thing he appreciated about his John Carroll days was a sense that students genuinely tried to get along despite different neighborhoods and backgrounds. Achieving his Communication degree with a minor in speech communication and psychology at the University of Alabama also prepared him well for the road ahead. While in college he had his first audition for a band learning “100 songs over Christmas break”. He still believes he got the job, mainly because he truly enjoyed himself while playing.
John believes that “it is possible to put together the life that you desire. If you don’t like the script, you can tear it up and create a new one.” He knew he could not ‘hold down a ‘regular’ type of job.” He then rewrote his ‘script’ with the goal of using “drumming to influence others and to bring people together with a positive message.”
For the past twenty years John has led interactive drum sessions - yes, EVERYONE drums and it is through this that John has empowered thousands to ‘realize their rhythm’ meaning to find their place in the world and even in the workplace. He’s traveled all over the world - to Japan three times - leading sessions helping his students to find their purpose through his “Get Rhythm” programs.