(May 28, 2024). It was a normal afternoon when the video came across my X (formerly Twitter) feed. 

There he was, Donald Trump, the former president, at one of his recent rallies doing a dance that can only be described as a mix between a malfunctioning robot and an over-enthused, middle-aged dad (or, more accurately, even older granddad) at a kid’s wedding. 

To make matters even more cringy, he was jabbing and stabbing to — get this — “Hold On, I’m Coming,” the 1966 No. 1 soul smash by the iconic Stax Records duo of Sam & Dave… and Trump’s equivalent to a baseball player’s walk-up music for this day’s event.  “Hold On” is a timeless classic indeed, and it just so happens to be the tune that was No. 1 on the soul chart on June 14, 1966, the day I made my own entrance into this world… kinda serving as my life’s own walk-up music.

And, as if that wasn’t coincidence enough, for the past several years I’ve had to endure the heckling of friends who know I share that birthday with the presumptive GOP presidential nominee himself. Talk about a one-two punch to the gut! (And, in a case of “If I can’t unsee it, then neither shall you,” here’s the clip…)

See for yourself (with the volume up if you can stand it)

As I watched Trump’s peculiar air-boxing routine, I couldn’t help but wonder if he was trying to fend off ghostly political opponents or perhaps swat away the pesky specter of the 2020 election result. Whatever his intentions, it was clear this was no ordinary dance. His fisted arms flew in the air with the limberness of an aircraft propeller, while his legs shuffled like someone who had just discovered the perils of a slick dance floor, except he was positioned on a well-tractioned wooden stair. His knees were moving, sure, but his feet remained planted as if they were being weighted down by those oversized gold-painted sneakers he introduced to the world three months ago.  

My soul cringed while watching it, not just because of the dance, but because of the chosen song and the date it tied me (and him) to.

You see, for nearly 50 years June 14th had always been a special day. It was a day for cake, candles, and awkwardly accepted gifts. But now, every time the calendar flips to Flag Day, I’m reminded of my cosmic connection to Trump. And now it won’t be just any Trump moment, but this one – a meme-worthy montage of flailing limbs and a soulful soundtrack that deserved better.

How did my birthdate, shared with the Billboard R&B chart crowning of a legendary Sam & Dave hit, end up also sharing space with a viral Trump dance-attack?  His moves give the old Britney Spears title “Me Against the Music” new heft. You’re left wondering if somewhere Sam Moore, the surviving half of Sam & Dave, is declaring the music the loser in this unnecessary battle.

It’s not that I have anything against the former president. Okay, maybe that’s a little inaccurate. But it’s the sheer absurdity of it all that triggers my laugh-cry.

Imagine trying to explain to folks that one of the highlights of your birthdate was “Hold On, I’m Coming,” a highly revered, chart-topping soul smash by a Rock and Roll Hall of Fame duo, only to have that moment overshadowed more than half a century later by a recent Commander in Chief’s not-so-chiefly dance moves to it that appear as if he’s auditioning for the pilot “America’s Gone Talentless” episode. It’s like explaining that you share a birthday with the clown at your own birthday party, except the jester in this case was one you didn’t invite. 

Now, for every June 14th beginning with the one right around the corner, instead of blowing out candles with the usual wishes for health and happiness, I’ll find myself hoping that no new “Trump vs. Sam & Dave” dance videos emerge to further taint that special day.

Yet, deep down, I’ll know that the 45th president’s Boxing Boogie will live on in internet infamy, because nothing like that ever truly disappears, especially a dance that defies both rhythm and reason (although, admittedly and perhaps magically, he does manage to stay in rhythm).

Sam & Dave perform “Hold On, I’m Coming” live in 1966.

So while I may cringe every time I hear “Hold On, I’m Coming,” I’ll also chuckle at the sheer absurdity of it all. Because if there’s one thing I’ve learned in life, it’s that it has a funny way of turning even the most soul-stirring songs into the backdrop for some truly unexpected and totally awkward dance moves.

Well, I didn’t really learn that very specific thing until now after seeing Trump’s manifestation of it.  

But here’s to June 14th anyway, a day of shared birthdays, silliness and soul. May some of us always find the humor in the most uncanny of connections, no matter how surreal they may be.

And may Trump’s Boxing Boogie be a reminder that even our most cringeworthy moments can bring a laugh or chuckle to someone’s face – even if that someone is watching from his smart device, shaking his head in disbelief.


P.s., at least the sanctity of “Paint It, Black” by the Stones remains intact. That happened to be the No. 1 tune on the American pop charts on that same June date.

DJRob (he/him) is a freelance music blogger from the East Coast who covers R&B, hip-hop, disco, pop, rock and country genres – plus lots of music news and current stuff!  You can follow him on X (formerly Twitter) at @djrobblog and on Meta’s Threads.

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By DJ Rob

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