I'M A YANKEE DOODLE DANDY
I believe all of us have certain holiday traditions. I’m not sure when I first watched the movie, “Yankee Doodle Dandy” as part of my holiday tradition for July 4th. It was somewhere between the summer of 1955 to 1957 in that period. I noticed this movie in my TV Guide and I had heard the music of George M. Cohan before so I had to watch the movie musical of his life story. This was the start of my July 4th tradition of watching “Yankee Doodle Dandy!!!!
It was either in the first or second grade at Sanford Grade School that I became introduced to the music of George M. Cohan. This introduction was by our music teacher, Miss Helen Lawler. Everyone loved music day, because you could smell Miss Lawler’s perfume as soon as she entered the school building. She introduced me to the music of George M. Cohan in music class by having us sing his classic “Over There”!!!!!.
With The United States of America mobilizing for World War II after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, Hollywood of those times went to war with the country. Thus the movie, “Yankee Doodle Dandy” was a 1942 musical production of the life of writer/dancer/singer/ actor, George M. Cohan. I was quite taken aback to see James Cagney playing the part of Cohan, as I had always seen him playing a tough guy type in his other roles. He surprised me greatly because he was a master dancer, and a very good singer also. In this movie there is one particular scene where he dances down the steps of The White House after receiving an award from President Roosevelt, and the dancing is incomparable to anything I have ever seen. Cagney’s dancing, and Cohan’s music make for a totally enjoyable patriotic movie quite suitable for the 4th of July. In the scene after the White House scene Cohan joins a parade of marching soldiers as the strains of “Over There” are being played to get their juices flowing for their upcoming battles.
Cagney won the Oscar for Best Leading Man in this movie.
WILL THE TRADITION END
It just doesn’t seem like the 4th of July without watching “Yankee Doodle Dandy”, but woe is me I can’t find it listed anywhere. It’s usually on Turner Classic Movies, but this year I can’t find it. Does anyone have a clue if it’s being shown for the 4th of July in 2010?
UPDATE JULY 5, 2010
I got to watch, "Yankee Doodle Dandy" yesterday at 5:30 PM on Turner Classic Movies.