June 17, 2021
Westwood Village Rotary Club
Coming up on June 24th . . .
WVRC Club Assembly

Our Club Assembly will be held on Thursday, June 24th - also our Club's 92nd birthday. We will share key highlights of our Long-Range Strategic Plan - and we have exciting news. Be sure to join us for the last meeting of this Rotary year.
WVRC Foundation Donation Challenge

In honor of our Club's 92nd birthday and the successful completion of a challenging year, our Club is holding a WVRC Foundation Donation Challenge - please consider making a year-end donation to our Club's Foundation, which will be matched 2 to 1 by our Club, up to a total of $5,000.
Westwood Virtual Rotary Club Meeting for June 17, 2021
President Nancy welcomed everyone to the friendly Westwood Village Rotary Club.

Gordon Fell pinch hit and led our club in the pledge, THANK YOU!!

Ron Lyster gave our thought for the day.
“In honor of today's guest speaker, and her topic, “Thanks for the Beatles,” I'd like to share two quotations from each of the Beatles. Let's start with Paul McCartney: 'Music is like a psychiatrist. You can tell your guitar things that you can't tell people. And it will answer you with things people can't tell you.' 'I am alive and well and unconcerned about the rumors of my death. But if I were dead, I would be the last to know.' Here are two from George Harrison: 'I think people who truly can live a life in music are telling the world, ‘You can have my love, you can have my smiles. Forget the bad parts, you don’t need them. Just take the music, the goodness, because it’s the very best, and it’s the part I give most willingly." "Everyone should have themselves regularly overwhelmed by nature.' Now two from John Lennon: 'There are two basic motivating forces: fear and love. When we are afraid, we pull back from life.' 'We’ve got this gift of love, but love is like a precious plant. You can’t just accept it and leave it in the cupboard or just think it’s going to get on by itself. You’ve got to keep watering it. You’ve got to really look after it and nurture it.' Finally, words of wisdom from Ringo Starr: 'I’ve never really done anything to create what has happened. It creates itself. I’m here because it happened. But I didn’t do anything to make it happen apart from saying ‘Yes’. Last, but not least, Ringo said: 'Everything government touches turns to crap.'”

Song meister and soloist, Ed Gauld, shared the song of the day," You’re a Grand Ol' Flag" in honor of Flag Day this past Monday.

Two special guests: Benjamin Fisher, along with our speaker, Dr. Elizabeth Upton

An addition to the June birthday list was Marsha Day, whose birthday is today!

Past President Steve Scherer shared some memories and a nice tribute remembering Dick Littlestone, as he did for John Singleton last week. Steve said John was the PMS of ROTC at UCLA; as he retired from the Army as a regular Army officer, he was in charge of the ROTC at UCLA.  Lt. Colonel Littlestone had people who liked him and people who did not but everyone believed he was sincere, a hard worker and accomplished much. He was dedicated to his work with youth and the international exchange and stayed in touch with anyone we sponsored. Ron said Dick was always there for him but said he always said exactly what he thought and some people didn’t like that because it wasn’t always diplomatic. Mike Newman added that both men were intrinsically involved in our student work and international scholars that laid the ground work of the many years our club has been involved and would take the kids skiing. Steve added John Singleton was one of his great heroes in Rotary and never forgot when they were in Guadalajara, working with cochlear ear implant surgeries, first in Mexico – using imported surgeons and hearing devices. Steve and John were seated across from the children and one of the hearing experts starting clapping his hands and to see the kids hear clapping for the first time; their reaction to hearing for the first time was one of those Rotary moments. John would always close when he would sign off with – “Have a fabulous day.”

Next week is our Club’s 92nd bday and Club Assembly on June 24th. Nancy encouraged us to have our beverage of choice to toast our club.

Also we are having our year-end challenge to give to the WVRC Foundation and our club will match 2:1 and two projects will be chosen to support from.

Diane shared the US ROTC sword ceremony has been moved to be live on July 6 at 3:00p.m. at the LA Coliseum.                                                                              

Chris Gaynor is recovering from a surgery, so we hope he is healing well and hope to see him back soon.
Bill Roen provided an introduction of our speaker Dr. Elizabeth R. Upton -
We had a slight technical difficulty where Zoom kicked out our speaker, so we all shared Beatles stories until she returned and some of our members had taken her class and said it was hard!

Steve Scherer asked what is the one thing that you want us to take away from her presentation today? 

Dr. Upton shared all the GE classes they teach in Musicology used to be music appreciation. They learn Vocabulary, composers activity of what they are doing, what listeners are doing, The Beatles teach really well for these kinds of engagement – to remember to include the listeners.

Instead of one way – classical music composition – write and hand off to performers, the Beatles wrote, performed and listened to other music. When starting writing, they were writing for others and their songs were generic – common feelings of love, feeling hopeful, not personal. A lot of titles had the word "You" in it. "From Me to You," to have that type of communication. "I want to hold your hand," etc. They went into music to meet girls and make a lot of money, which they did. 

Benjamin Fisher asked about Brian Wilson Head Sounds. "Sgt. Pepper" came out in 1967; last tour in SF in 1966 was not good. They learned the bands then had these complicated names so gave them this outlet with another name – so making "Sgt. Pepper" allowed this layered complicated sound with symphonic riffs and full settings for each song.

John O'Keefe took her class in 2014 and remembered when she discussed the Beatles breaking up asked her to share why – it was a lot of different things. There was never really a rock star management to know they could have taken a vacation without breaking up. So management styles differed – John thought everyone would just agree with him and Paul married the daughter of a lawyer; so that challenge to John’s authority was not appreciated. The mindset of Beatlemania was they were the flavor of the month, thinking the next big band would replace them; that never happened. Rolling Stones is an example that they are still touring and Mick Jagger is a great grandfather, but they take breaks between tours.

John didn’t want the story to be that hey were breaking up, so on the quiet, everyone in Beatles started working on solo albums but thought they would have a coordinated release. Well, Paul released his first, so that caused some issues but ultimately they worked things out.

The movie, "Let it Be" was supposed to be the get-back project to playing live as a band. They made the "Abbey Road" album after these movies.

Different directors have released or will be releasing films on these get back projects whether from the not getting along perspective or getting along times. 

Gordon asked whether there a path between medieval music and current music. She discussed the link between middle music - from Gregorian chants and music for church services to tunes for troubadours, polyphonies (music in more than one part) to “secular music.” Thinking of 15th century songs around what listeners were thinking – verse, repeat, contrast, return to original verse.

Marsha asked about their pageboy haircuts. Starting in 1960, they were hired to play in Hamburg in bars. One day a college student heard it and loved it and the next day he brought friends and these three German art students who started regularly attending. So the Beatles started hanging out with them because they thought they were fashionable and cool. One of the guys had a haircut from a Parisian school, so they all tried it (except for a drummer, who wasn’t Ringo) - so from Paris to Hamburg.

John O’Keefe asked about a Vanderbilt professor's comparison of one of Beethoven’s pieces to "Hey Jude."   The message of the song, though, is everything is going to be alright, even though things are difficult. It started out as a message to Julian because his parents were getting divorced - "Hey, Jules" - but didn’t want it to be so personal. The "nah nah nah nah nah nah nah's" – they had just learned to repeat phrases in India with meditating to have your mind calm down so you can focus.

Mark Rogo asked about Pete Best; she said he is still alive in Liverpool. Pete wasn’t really a professional drummer. He played drums, his mom set up a club in their basement called, the Jacaranda Club. So when they got the gig in Hamburg they were three guitarists and needed to hire a drummer to go to Germany. They hired Pete the day before they left for Hamburg, but he didn’t really hang with them; meanwhile, Ringo was the drummer in the biggest band in Liverpool at the time, so George Martin the manager was able to make the switch.

We will definitely have Dr. Upton back when she can have her slides and full presentation, but despite it all, this was a delightful conversation and meeting.

A contribution to the Westwood Library will be made in her honor and we look forward to having her again. 

  • In service, Past President, Aly Shoji

WVRC 2020/2021 Leadership Team
President: Nancy McCready
Treasurer: Terry M. White
Youth/Vocational Service: Phil Gabriel
Director/Peace: PP Marsha Hunt
Foundation: PP Steve Day
Global Scholarships: PP Chris Bradford
Webmaster: PP Ron Lyster
Director/Merchant Minute: PP Mark Rogo
District Governor: Bette Hall
Immediate Past President: Diane Good
Secretary: PP Diane Good
Community Service: Aaron Donahue
International Service: Nevin Senkan
Program Chair: PP Tom Barron
Membership: PP Mike Newman
Director/Social Media: PP Aly Shoji
Windmill Editor: P Nancy McCready
Assistant District Governor: Michael Lushing