Monday, May 3, 2010

Forever Charlie ...

I don't know how many of you remember the song "Charlie" by Rabbitt, but this song will always hold a special place in my heart and I will tell you why.

When I started High School at 12 years of age, I had come from a very disciplined primary school which had high expectations of all it's pupils.  The High School I attended took in pupils from about 7 or 8 different primary schools, so it turned out there were 11 classes of Standard 6's with 40 pupils in each class and I landed up in the naughtiest class of them all.  The age group on my class ranged from 12 to 16 (some of the guys had failed 3 times and kept back).

Anyway to cut a long story short, I had a few friends in my class but used to hang around with Jenny and Jo-Anne, Jo-Anne started dating a guy in our class called Luis.  Luis was lovely he was Spanish, and lived in Regents park.  Luis had a special musical talent, he could sing, play guitar and the drums and in 1977 Rabbitt was on top of the charts and all the girls would go mad for them, so of course Luis would play cover versions of Rabbitts songs, he would often bring his guitar to school and then after school he would play for us, I always thought his version of Charlie was just so much nicer than the original and I even taped him singing.

After standard 6 Jo-Anne went to a different class, but Luis and I were in the same class for standard 7.  After standard 7 we had to choose what subjects you were doing up to matric and Luis went to a different class, we also didn't really hang out anymore, Luis & Jo-Anne split up but still remained friends.  Then one fateful night in 1979 Jo-Anne, her sister, another girl from our school Antoinette, Luis and another friend of his all went off to a nightclub.  On the way home they the driver somehow hit a lamp post in La Rochelle and Luis who was sitting in the front passenger seat and Jo-Anne sitting behind him were killed instantly.

Such a waste of two beautiful people and beautiful talents.  So every time I listen to Rabbitt and especially the song Charlie, I think of Jo-Anne and Luis.

I knew Luis had a little sister and because she was quite a bit younger than us, I never really thought about her.  Well I had some photos of Luis posted on Facebook under The Hill High School and Christina, Luis sister got hold of me on facebook and also Rui who is in this photo and was friends with Luis.

1 comment:

Terri said...

wow, That is very sad. I do remember Rabbit but I was really young then... in 1977 I would've been 5. Still, I remember the song well.
How nice that Luis's sister got hold of you on Facebook. I'm sure it was wonderful for her to find an old photo of her brother and be in touch with someone who knew him.