Jan 31, 2022

Han Shot First

Star Wars: A New Hope - Special Edition
20th Century Fox (1997)
Twenty five years ago today, the controversial Special Edition of the first Star Wars movie premiered in theaters across the United States.  There were a number of changes made, including the addition of deleted scenes and computer effects that were not possible in 1977.  A few of the changes seemed alright at the time, like the addition of a scene of Jabba The Hutt confronting Han Solo on Tatooine.  However, in retrospect, the late 90's CGI stands out like a sore thumb when surrounded by the brilliant practical effects that helped draw fans into the Star Wars universe in the first place.

The change that is universally despised among Star Wars fans was the addition of Greedo shooting at Han Solo first, and an embarrassingly poor digital manipulation of Harrison Ford to make him look like his head slid to the left to avoid being shot before he fires his own blaster at Greedo.  Not only does it look terrible, but it ruins the entire scene in a misguided attempt to make Solo appear to be a "good guy" who would only fire in self-defense.  Fan backlash resulted in a flood of stickers, t-shirts and other merchandise with the words "Han Shot First".  The phrase became the late 90's equivalent of a viral hashtag many years before social media or hashtags existed.

Star Wars was originally released three years before I was born, so the 1997 Special Edition was my first time seeing it on the big screen, at the Church Hill Cinema in Hazleton.  I was sixteen years old at the time, and I was too focused on the Jabba The Hutt scene to even notice the alterations to the Greedo scene.  It was only later on when I watched them on VHS that the added special effects felt off to me.  I'll probably never choose to watch the Special Edition over the original 1977 release, but I'm still thankful that it exists because it gave me the opportunity to see Star Wars in theaters.

Jan 30, 2022

We Are Oxfords, Not Rogues

The King's Man
20th Century Studios (2021)
We saw the trailer for The King's Man before one of the other movies that we recently saw at the Regal (either Scream or Nightmare Alley - I can't remember which).  That trailer was my only exposure to this movie, so all I knew is that it was some sort of action/comedy flick, and that Rasputin and Lenin were two of the antagonists, so I went into this almost completely blind and with no expectations, which is one of my favorite ways to see a new movie in theaters.

Action comedies are a strange genre for me.  I almost always enjoy them when I see them, but the way they're promoted doesn't usually appeal to me, so it's rare that I go out of my way to see them.  Even now, when I look at the poster, I think "eh, I guess it could be ok".  There's nothing wrong with it.  In fact, it's a very nice poster, but it doesn't jump out at me as something that I need to see.  Truth be told, if I had seen the trailer more than once, I probably wouldn't have wanted to go see it.  Again, there's nothing wrong with the trailer, but the more often I see them, the less interested I am in actually seeing the movie.  As I write this, I'm reminded of The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen.  It came out almost 20 years ago and I still haven't seen it despite the fact that I like Sean Connery.  The trailer was played heavily on television in the weeks leading up to it's premier, and by the time it was in theaters, I had zero interest in seeing it.  I'm not advocating against commercials and trailers because if people don't know anything about a movie, it's unlikely that they'll pay to go see it.  I'm just weird when it comes to repetition, I guess.

I don't see as many commercials since we got rid of cable, and my exposure to the previews at the theater have been limited since we started our Regal Unlimited subscription because we've learned to time our arrival to just a few minutes before showtime, so I'm more likely to give a movie like The King's Man a shot in 2022 than I would have been years ago.

There are quite a few things that I didn't realize about this film going into it.  First of all, I had no idea that it was part of a franchise.  On our way out of the theater, I talked with the manager and mentioned that I really enjoyed this movie, and only then did I learn that it was a prequel to the Kingsman movies.  I had a faint memory of hearing about something called Kingsman, but the previous movies in the series came out before the Regal Unlimited plan existed, so they flew completely under my radar.

Also, I didn't know that this movie is based on a Marvel Comics series until I started writing this post just a few minutes ago.  I'm just not a comic book guy.  I tried to be when I was a kid.  My Nana gave me a comic book collecting kit that she ordered out of the Sears Wishbook as a Christmas present when I was ten years old, but I always preferred things like Calvin & Hobbes, Peanuts and The Far Side to Batman and Spider Man.  It's not like I didn't read them at all.  I did, and I liked the characters and the stories, but truth be told, I like the advertisements almost as much, if not more than the superhero stories.

Finally, I didn't realize that this movie was supposed to be released before the start of the pandemic.  It was originally slated for release in November 2019.  It got pushed back to February 2020 for some reason.  Then, it kept getting kicked down the road as a result of Covid-19, with at least six different release dates in 2020 and 2021 that came and went without the film ever being screened.  It finally premiered in December 2021 with a 45 day window in which it would be exclusive to theaters before heading to Hulu and HBO Max next month.

So, now that it's finally in theaters and I managed to find my way to seeing it without any prior knowledge of its existence, I'm happy to report that it's a hell of a lot of fun.  It's one of those movies that has a little bit of everything.  It has fun action scenes without being a balls-to-the-wall streetfight from beginning to end.  It has funny moments without turning into a slapstick comedy.  It has moments of drama without trying too hard to provoke a reaction.  It ties together actual historical events with a fictitious hidden story which reminded be a little bit of Inglourious Basterds.  I don't mean that had the style or tone of a Tarantino flick, because it did not, but I left the theater wondering if it was an inspiration to the writers.

I couldn't tell you how it ranks against the other Kingsman films because I haven't seen them, and I don't know how accurate it is to the source material because I've never read the comics.  However, I can tell you that if you're going into this with absolutely no knowledge of the Kingsman universe, it won't hinder your enjoyment of what is a very entertaining movie.  It has definitely inspired me to go back and watch the movies that I missed, and if they make another, I will be sure to see it on the big screen.

Jan 29, 2022

See You At The Ballpark, Space Cowboy

Sugar Land Space Cowboys
Triple-A West (2022)
The Sugar Land Skeeters got their start in 2012 as an independent franchise in the Atlantic League.  They remained in the league for eight seasons and won two championships before the cancellation of the Atlantic League's season in 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Instead of shutting down with the rest of the league, the Skeeters were one of the four teams that made up the Constellation Energy League, which began their 28 game season on July 10th, 2020.  The league had a brilliant approach to the pandemic, which included a schedule to play all of their games in Constellation Field, and socially distanced seating that was limited to 1,800 fans per game in the 7,500 seat ballpark.  The Sugar Land Skeeters, led by manager and former Phillies outfielder Pete Incaviglia, finished the 2020 season with a record of 17-11 to win the league championship.

After the 2020 season, the Houston Astros became the majority owners of the Sugar Land Skeeters, and for the first time in the history of the franchise, they were a Triple A affiliate for a Major League club.  The team was folded into the new Triple A West league, which was comprised of nine teams from the former Pacific Coast League plus the Skeeters.  The team played last season under the Skeeters name, but it was announced that they have been rebranded as the Sugar Land Space Cowboys for the start of the 2022 season.

The new name is brilliant.  It ties together the space theme of their parent club with the Texas cowboy culture, while at the same time adopting a nickname that resonates in pop culture.  I can just see the jumbo tron after the game showing the end title card from Cowboy Bebop while The Joker plays over the loudspeakers as the fans exit the ballpark.  God help the next player named Maurice who gets drafted by the Astros!

Jan 28, 2022

The World's A Hard Place, Danny

The Shining
Stephen King (1977)
One of the greatest horror novels of all time was published 45 years ago today.

"Monsters are real.  Ghosts are too.
They live inside of us, and sometimes they win."

Jan 27, 2022

The Phillies Infield That Could Have Been

Ryne Sandberg
Philadelphia Phillies (1981)
Just about every list of the worst baseball trades of all time will include this disaster, which took place 40 years ago today, but the reality was even worse than it appears on the surface.

York Daily Record (left) and Gettysburg Times (right) - January 6, 1982

In order to tell the story properly, I'm going to channel the spirit of Sophia Petrillo.  Picture it - Philadelphia 1981.  At the end of the season, it was questionable if Larry Bowa would be returning to Philadelphia in 1982.  Bowa wanted a three year contact, and at 36 years old, the Phillies were reluctant to give it to him.  With one year left on his contract and two top infield prospects getting close to being promoted to the big leagues, it was decided that the smart move would be to trade Bowa while they could still get something for him, rather than risk losing him to free agency at the end of the 1982 season.

The Phillies weren't the only team with a malcontent at shortstop prior to the start of the 1982 season.  Two time All-Star Garry Templeton was one of the fastest and best hitting shortstops in the league over five and a half seasons in St. Louis.  The switch hitter led the league in triples three times and batted .305 with 128 stolen bases in his time with the Cardinals.  He is still the only National League player to have ever gotten 100 hits from each side of the plate in a single season (1979).  Despite this, the 25 year old shortstop had clashed with his manager, his teammates and the fans, and by the end of the 1981 season, the writing was on the wall that he would not be back in 1982.

At the same time, the Padres ownership was in the middle of a financial dispute with their 27 year old shortstop, which ultimately led to an order to the general manager to trade him.  That shortstop was future first ballot Hall Of FamerOzzie Smith.  At the time, Smith's production at the plate was nothing to write home about.  He hit .231 with one home run in his four seasons in San Diego, but was a two-time Gold Glove winner and one of the best defensive shortstops that anyone had ever seen.
New York Daily News - January 3, 1982

The Padres and Cardinals agreed in principle to swap Templeton for Smith at the 1981 Winter Meetings in December, but Ozzie Smith had a full no-trade clause, and he wouldn't agree to a trade to St. Louis without an agreement on a one year contact to pay the shortstop $750,000.  The Cardinals balked at these salary demands, and the general consensus in early 1982 was that a trade between the Cardinals and Padres wasn't going to happen.

Philadelphia Inquirer - January 7, 1982

This series of events opened the door to a potential trade that could have brought either Garry Templeton or Ozzie Smith to Philadelphia at the start of the 1982 season.  The front office had interest in both players and were in communication with the Cardinals and Padres, but it's not clear how strongly they pursued them or how close they may have come to an agreement with either side.  There were potential roadblocks in both cases.  Templeton strongly disliked playing on artificial turf, and with several large contracts already on their books, the Phillies front office may have backed off of their pursuit of Ozzie due to his salary demands.  However, these sort of obstacles are overcome all the time, as evident by the fact that the Cardinals and Padres finally managed to complete their shortstop swap on February 10th.  But two weeks before that happened, the Phillies pulled the trigger on a deal with the Cubs that would haunt the franchise ever since.

Philadelphia Inquirer - January 28th, 1982

On January 27th, 1982, the Phillies agreed to a trade that would send Larry Bowa to the Chicago Cubs in exchange for Iván DeJesús.  Why the Phillies front office wanted DeJesús in the first place is something I will never understand.  Granted, he was one of the best defensive shortstops in baseball, having led the league in double plays turns by a shortstop, but he finished the 1981 season with a reverse triple crown, with a .194 batting average, zero home runs, and 13 RBI - the lowest in each of these categories among qualified batters in all of Major League Baseball.  If they were content with a slick fielding, light hitting shortstop, Ozzie Smith was right there for the taking, if only they would have been willing to open their wallet.

source: Baseball-Reference

The trade would have been underwhelming even if it was an even swap of Bowa for DeJesús.  While DeJesús did bounce back from his horrible 1981 season, he was never able to reach the level of production at the plate when he was the leadoff bat for the Cubs in the late 70's.  He was a marginally better offensive player than Larry Bowa, but that's not saying much when you consider that Bowa was seven years older and in the twilight of his career.  Had the Phillies given Bowa the three year deal that he was asking for, they would likely have gotten close to the same offensive production to what DeJesús brought to the table, as well as his veteran leadership as a mentor to the next generation of Phillies infielders.

However, this trade was not an even swap... not by a long shot.
Chicago Tribune - October 23, 1981

Dallas Green, who had managed the Phillies from 1979 to 1981, was lured away from Philadelphia to take a job as the vice president and general manager of the Chicago Cubs.  The man who had led the Phillies to their only championship in 100 years was very familiar with the talent in Philadelphia.  He hired Phillies bench coach Lee Elia to manage the Cubs.  He also brought over utility infielder John Vukovich, who had been released by the Phillies in August, for a role on the Cubs coaching staff, as well as Phillies scout Gordon Goldsberry to serve as the Cubs director of player development and scouting.

Green completed a trade with the Phillies before the holidays that brought Keith Moreland and Dickie Noles to Chicago in exchange for Mike Krukow.  That trade worked out pretty well for the Phillies, but the Bowa-for-DeJesús trade did not.  Before Green would sign off on the trade, he negotiated the inclusion of a Phillies prospect in the deal - a 22 year old infielder who had just been promoted to the Phillies in September and who only had six Major League at bats.  His name was Ryne Sandberg.

Philadelphia Inquirer - January 28, 1982

To the media, the fans, and the Phillies front office, Ryne Sandberg was little more than a footnote in this trade.  I'll save you some time and eye strain by pointing out that in the article written about the trade in the Philadelphia Inquirer, Sandberg's name is mentioned only twice, with almost nothing said about what the loss of Sandberg might mean to the Phillies prospect depth.  In fact, the article mentions more about Julio Franco, another Phillies prospect who the team would eventually trade away, than it does about Sandberg.

Philadelphia Inquirer - January 28, 1982

And the rest is history.

Ozzie Smith would go on to develop into one of the greatest shortstops of all time.  In a coaching move similar to Lou Brown's approach with Willie Mays Hayes in the 1989 classic Major League, Cardinals manager Whitey Herzog worked with Smith to change in his approach at the plate to hit the ball on the ground.  

He helped to lead the Cardinals to a World Series Championship in his first year with the team, and he spent the rest of his 15 year career in St. Louis where he won a Gold Glove and made the All-Star team every season for the next ten consecutive years.  In total, he was a 15 time All-Star with 13 Gold Gloves, and was inducted into the Hall of Fame on his first year of eligibility with 91.7% of the vote.

Injuries played a role in Garry Templeton's career not reaching the heights of the man he was traded for, but he had a remarkable run with the Padres for nearly ten seasons.  He helped the Padres reach the World Series in 1984 and was an All-Star the following season.  In a moment of bitter irony for Phillies fans, he was named team captain in 1987 by his manager, Larry Bowa, who was in the first year of his managerial career after retiring as an active player at the end of the 1985 season.  While Templeton's career didn't end with a plaque in Cooperstown, he was honored alongside teammate Benito Santiago as a member of the San Diego Padres Hall of Fame in 2015.

Last, but not least, is Ryne Sandberg.  While Ozzie Smith and Garry Templeton are players that the Phillies could have acquired, Sandberg was ours until we gave him away.  The Cubs originally planned to play Sandberg in center field, but they ultimately decided to have him play third base in 1982.  He had a great season at third base and finished sixth in the Rookie Of The Year voting, but the Cubs acquired six time All-Star third baseman Ron Cey in a trade with the Dodgers after the 1982 season, which necessitated a position change.  Sandberg shifted to the other side of Larry Bowa for the start of the 1983 season where he began a run of nine consecutive Gold Glove seasons at second base.  He won the NL MVP award in 1984 and was a ten time All-Star with seven Silver Slugger awards over his 15+ year career, all of which was spent with the Cubs except for the dozen games he played for the Phillies prior to the trade.  He was inducted into the Hall Of Fame and had his #23 retired with the Cubs in 2005, joining only three other Cubs to have had this honor in the history of a franchise that dates back to 1876.

Sandberg would return to Philadelphia as a manager, first for the Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs in 2011 until he was promoted to manage the Phillies in 2013, taking over for Charlie Manuel.  Unfortunately for the Phillies, Sandberg's career as a manager paled in comparison to his playing career, as he failed to live up to the expectations that were set by his success in Lehigh Valley.  He abruptly quit on June 26th, 2015 with a Phillies team that, at the time, had the worst record in baseball.

And what about our guy that the Phillies front office just had to have so they could get something for Larry Bowa?  Well... the less that is said about Iván DeJesús, the better.  He played three seasons for the Phillies (the same three seasons that Bowa had asked for in his request for a contract extension) until he was unceremoniously traded to the Cardinals (along with Bill Campbell) for relief pitcher Dave RuckerRucker didn't set the city on fire either, appearing in 58 games out of the Phillies bullpen over the next two seasons with one save and a 4.66 ERA.

The Bowa-for-DeJesús trade is even more heartbreaking in retrospect when you consider what the Phillies could have been.  At the time of this trade, both the Cardinals and Padres were committed to trading Garry Templeton and Ozzie Smith respectively.  If the front office had been more aggressive and willing to spend, there was a golden opportunity for the team to trade Bowa for one of them in a deal that didn't have to include Ryne Sandberg.  Imagine what could have been in 1982 and '83 with an infield of Pete Rose, Ryne Sandberg, Ozzie Smith and Mike Schmidt.  Even if the team had bit the bullet and given Bowa the extension he wanted, they could have had Rose, Sandberg, Bowa and Schmidt, with either Julio Franco competing for a job to replace Rose, or the 5-for-1 trade going down as it did to bring Von Hayes to town.  It's possible that the Phillies window of contention could have continued well beyond the Wheeze Kids of 1983.

If this story has a moral, it is this:  When you decide to become a fan of the Philadelphia Phillies, you should know what you're in for, because the Ryne Sandberg fiasco was arguably not even the worst trade we ever made with the Cubs.

Jan 26, 2022

Fish Cloning At The Arcade

US Billiards Inc (1981)
While reading the Games People Play article from Time that was published forty years ago this week, I noticed a game that I am completely unfamiliar with.  I don't even think I've seen a picture of the cabinet before, let alone ever seeing or playing it in an arcade.

From the screenshot, it's pretty obvious that Piranha is a Pac-Man clone.  I've played several of these over the years on home consoles, including Lock N Chase, Jawbreaker and KC Munchkin, and I've come across a few in arcades in the 80's and early 90's, but I've never seen one with such detailed cabinet artwork. 

The Arcade Archives did a thorough write-up on Piranha in their The Games That Pac Forgot series.  In it, they explain that Piranha was released as a Pac-Man conversion kit that removes the walls of the maze and converts the graphics to an underwater theme.  The playable Pac-Man character is represented by a red piranha, the power pellets are replaced by seashells, and the ghost monsters have been replaced by four squids.  As in Pac-Man, the object is to eat all of the dots while avoiding the four monsters, and eating one of the special power-ups will allow your character to eat the squids for a short period of time.  There are also special items that can be collected for bonus points which replace the fruit in Pac-Man, including crabs, fish, and anchors and whales of various colors.

There's a pretty slim chance of finding a Piranha cabinet outside of a specialty retro arcade like Galloping Ghost, but it's easy enough to emulate on Mame.  It's definitely worth trying out to experience a piece of gaming history from the early 80's.

Jan 25, 2022

Retro Midnight Madness

Circuit City
Richmond, VA (1981)
This photo of a Circuit City sale display was shared by Vintage Richmond over ten years ago, and it remains one of the earliest retail pictures from the second generation of game consoles that I've come across.  The presence of games like KaboomWarlords and Pelé's Soccer for the Atari 2600 in the game case suggests that this photo was taken sometime in 1981, but I wasn't able to narrow it down any closer than that.

The display shows a countertop where consoles and controllers have been hooked up so that shoppers could try out some of the games (for five minutes only) on one of the CRT televisions on the shelf above.  These consoles include two Atari 2600 six switch models book-ending an Odyssey 2 and an Intellivision.  Behind the countertop and below the televisions is a case for games that were available for sale. including Fishing Derby, Video Pinball, Missile Command, Space Invaders, Dodge 'Em, Night Driver, Asteroids, Combat, Freeway and Laser Blast among others.

Get your Dracula cosplay ready, kids.  We're headed down to the Circuit City.

I tried to find an advertisement for the Midnight Madness sale in Richmond that was shown in this picture, but the closest I could get was this ad for a similar sale in North Carolina.  While there are no game consoles shown in this ad, I had to share it for this graphic alone.
Sir, that is a refrigerator... and what do you plan to do with that mallet?

The idea of a bunch of shoppers gathered around a store employee demonstrating a microwave oven amuses me to no end, but it's really not very surprising for the time.  Microwaves only became affordable for the average person in the late 70's, so it's probable that some of the people in the store for this sale might not have actually ever used one.  But enough about microwaves... back to the games.

The sign that shows the price of the Atari 2600 in the photo is a bit blurry, but this Circuit City ad from October 1981 shows that it was on sale for $134.97, which was $25 off of their normal price.  This was about three and a half years into the console's life cycle.  The people who read this ad when it originally ran were still five months away from Atari's highly disappointing home port of Pac-Man and over a year away from The Video Game Crash of 1983 that resulted from a flood of poor games, so Atari was still riding high.  Unfortunately, it was a presence in the industry that they would never come close to again.

It's interesting to see that the Atari 2600 was being marketed as a programmable video game system.  It's true - you could buy the BASIC Programming cartridge.  The programming capabilities were extremely limited, even for 1981, but it was a way for Atari and their retail partners to market the console to the folks who were not early adopters to the phenomenon of "TV Games".

Jan 24, 2022

Crazy Drunk And Almost Dead

Meadville Daily Republican
Monday, October 1st, 1888
Since the new year began, I've been spending a little time doing research on Ancestry.com to build a family tree.  I came across this little nugget of information from the 19th Century that I found to be pretty interesting.  According to a newspaper report out of Meadville, Pennsylvania, a man named Billy Schweitzer was discovered "crazy drunk and almost dead" after laying out in a field outside of the city all night.  He was brought to jail where I'm assuming he sobered up and was once again let loose among the townsfolk.

Now, I can't say for sure if this person is my ancestor.  My family settled in Pennsylvania, and the name William Schweitzer goes back four generations to my great-grandfather, but he was born in 1904 and, to the best of my knowledge, no one in my family has ever lived in Meadville.  However, I suppose that it's possible that a great, great, great uncle of mine may have gone on a bender and passed out drunk in a Pennsylvania field.  There's also an outside chance that my future self will fall into a time portal and land back in 1888 where I proceed to get blitzed on a Friday night before passing out in a field.

Jan 23, 2022

Certified Iron Mutant

Yesterday, I got my official Iron Mutant citation from Joe Bob and Darcy for making it all the way through Sledgehammer and Things last season on The Last Drive-In.  Long live the #MutantFam!

Jan 22, 2022

Life Without Louie

Louie Anderson
1953 - 2022
This year really isn't starting out too well.  Louie Anderson was an iconic and highly accomplished stand-up comedian with a body of work that rivals any of his contemporaries.  In addition to his stand-up, his body of work includes television, movies, game shows, and the very funny animated series, Life With Louie, which ran for three seasons from 1994 to 1998.  Mr. Anderson passed away yesterday after a battle with cancer.  He was 68 years old.

When I was a kid, my grandfather brought a VHS tape home called Mom! Louie's Looking At Me Again.  It's one of the funniest stand-up comedy shows I've ever seen in my life.  It's clever and relatable while still being pretty close to a G-rated show.  I'm listening to it now as I type this.  If you want to relax for an hour and have a few laughs in remembrance of a very gifted and funny man, check it out on  YouTube.

The show was recorded at the Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis.  I'm not positive, but I'm pretty sure that it was recorded on December 22nd, 1986.  The show was recorded and aired on television across Minnesota.  I read that it was purchased by Showtime, and at some point it was licensed for home video where my family discovered it.

I never got to see him perform in person.  We had tickets to see his show in Lancaster on May 8th.  In fact, I found out about his passing from an email that was sent out by the venue.

Thank you, Mr. Anderson, for making the world a better place.

Jan 21, 2022

Someone Must Have Blessed Us When He Gave Us Those Songs

Meat Loaf
1947 - 2022
One of the most talented performers who ever took the stage or stood in front of a camera has left this world last night at the age of 74.  There will absolutely never be another Meat Loaf.

No words could ever do justice to his legacy, so I'll close with the words of Jim Steinman that were performed by Meat Loaf on Bat Out Of Hell II.  It's just one of many of his songs that has been a source of comfort when times were hard, and an exclamation of joy shouted alone in the car on happy summer nights.
Meat Loaf (1993)

You can't run away forever
But there's nothing wrong with getting a good head start
You want to shut out the night
You want to shut down the sun
You want to shut away the pieces of a broken heart

Think of how we'd lay down together
We'd be listening to the radio so loud and so strong
Every golden nugget coming like a gift of the gods
Someone must have blessed us when he gave us those songs

I treasure your love
I never want to lose it
You've been through the fires of hell
And I know you've got the ashes to prove it   
I treasure your love
I want to show you how to use it
You've been through a lot of pain in the dirt
And I know you've got the scars to prove it

Remember everything that I told you
And I'm telling you again that it's true
When you're alone and afraid
And you're completely amazed
To find there's nothing anybody can do

There's always something magic
There's always something new
And when you really really need it the most
That's when rock and roll dreams come through
The beat is yours forever
The beat is always true
And when you really really need it the most
That's when rock and roll dreams come through for you

Once upon a time was a backbeat
Once upon a time all the chords came to life
And the angels had guitars even before they had wings
If you hold onto a chorus you can get through the night

I treasure your love
I never want to lose it
You've been through the fires of hell
And I know you've got the ashes to prove it
I treasure your love
I want to show you how to use it
You've been through a lot of pain in the dirt
And I know you've got the scars to prove it

Remember everything that I told you
And I'm telling you again that it's true
You're never alone 'cause you can put on the phones
And let the drummer tell your heart what to do

There's always something magic
There's always something new
And when you really really need it the most
That's when rock and roll dreams come through
The beat is yours forever
The beat is always true
And when you really really need it the most
That's when rock and roll dreams come through for you