Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Behind The Pen- Analyzing Carl Perkins' Handwriting

Two weeks ago, That Nashville Sound ran a column in which we took some handwritten lyrics by the legendary Willie Nelson and analyzed them to gain a little insight to his psyche.
"In songwriting circles, there are hundreds of famous stories about song ideas written on dinner napkins or even the palm of a hand. When the inspiration hits, the inspiration hits–and there’s no putting off getting that song concept or lyric down on paper before it’s forgotten forever. The details of that copy are the bare bones of what will be (or has been) a song."
Today, we have a follow-up column that takes a similar approach with Carl Perkins. Perkins (April 9, 1932 – January 19, 1998) was an American rockabilly musician who recorded most notably at Sun Records Studio in Memphis, Tennessee, beginning during 1954. His best known song is "Blue Suede Shoes".

According to Charlie Daniels, "Carl Perkins' songs personified the rockabilly era, and Carl Perkins' sound personifies the rockabilly sound more so than anybody involved in it, because he never changed." Perkins' songs were recorded by artists (and friends) as influential as Elvis Presley, the Beatles, Jimi Hendrix, and Johnny Cash, which further cemented his place in the history of popular music.

Called "the King of Rockabilly", he was inducted into the Rock and Roll, the Rockabilly, and the Nashville Songwriters Halls of Fame; and was a Grammy Hall of Fame Award recipient.

TNS has utlilized a qualified and certified handwriting analyst that was willing to take this project on. Dr. Donna Schwontkowski easily fit the bill. Dr. Donna is a Certified Handwriting Analyst and runs a website on the topic. Here is her take on the handwritten lyrics photographed:

Date of Handwriting Sample: Jan. 10, 1955

A person’s handwriting reveals many insights into a person’s personality. It can be a wonderful way to get to know someone in the beginning of a new relationship or a better way to understand someone if you have known them for a long time. Even if you don’t know the person at all, a handwriting analysis is an excellent way to learn what type of relationship you can expect with that person. That’s because a handwriting analysis can reveal hidden personality characteristics, defenses that the person uses in stressful situations, and a whole lot more. A handwriting analysis can be just as accurate as one of the psychologist’s tools to determine a person’s personality.

Emotional Slant of the Handwriting

When a cursive handwriting sample is analyzed, it is relatively easy to determine the emotional slant of the writing. This indicates how a person would tend to act around other people and his desire to show emotions and express them. In the case of Carl Perkins, the slant of the writing is a far right slant, indicating that he is “wired” neurologically to be an emotionally expressive person, and can be extremely emotional most of the time. This means that he can be expected to react to situations emotionally and most likely has huge ups and downs in how he feels. This type of person would be very difficult to deal with on a long-term basis simply because one would have to essentially walk around on tiptoes, wondering, “Is he happy today or sad?”

At the time of this handwriting sample, Carl was enthusiastic, yet slightly depressed, as was indicated in the t bars crossed high at the top and the downward slant of the lines of writing, respectively.

Forgiveness Potential

It is possible to determine how a person responds to emotional situations and forgives another person. This is determined by the amount of pressure used on the pen during the handwriting. In this case, Carl Perkins shows a medium to heavy type of pen pressure. This indicates that he can be a person that holds grudges for long periods of time. Someone that writes with light pressure is someone that can easily forgive and forget, someone that doesn’t want to hold things against another person and will think of ways to forgive.

Traits and Characteristics

There are other traits that can be seen, as determined by the strokes of the letters. Below is a list of them:

Trait- Where It is Seen in the Handwriting

1. Cautious. Ending the words with a long stroke as in the letter e in the word home located in the phrase “a long way from home” The more often this stroke is seen, the more the person is cautious in life. This is only seen once in the handwriting sample.

2. High self esteem- In the letter t, high self esteem is seen in the placement of the t bar. The level of where it crosses is linked to self esteem; the higher the t bar is crossed, the higher the self esteem. However, the t bar must be crossed on the stem of the letter, not above it with any blank space between the two parts of the letter. Carl has quite a few of these high self esteem letter Ts.
3. Efficiency- In the letters th, connecting the two letters together indicates a person that strives to be efficient. Several letter t’s in the sample show this trait.

4. Likes to work alone- The single tail on the letter y displays this trait. The length of the letter y is also an indication of the person’s energy level. The shorter the tail, the less energy the person has. At the time of this writing sample, Carl had a lack of energy.

5. Loves challenges- The curl on the letter c in “Chorus” at the top of the the opposite page. When this trait shows up, watch out! This is a person that does not want to be with someone who likes to sit in a rocking chair at home who also agrees to everything that is said. He likes a challenge and seeks a partner in life that is challenging. The most boring relationships for a person with this trait would be someone who has no mind of their own and no distinct personality.

6. Repressed feelings- The letter M in the words “Match Box”- Retracing the strokes of the letter M tightly indicates a person with repressed feelings.

7. Dreamer- Dotting the letter i far to the right found in the words “Written by.” A dreamer is someone that allows himself to go forward into the future and imagine what it would be like. This can be a great skill to have if you’re a singer because it is linked with what could be possible and the ability to imagine how someone might feel.

8. Gives up on a goal- The letter g found in the words loving, wondering. Where the upstroke crosses the downstroke on the letter g and y can be an indication of a person’s ability to achieve a goal. Here we find that Carl gives up on goals quite frequently. It could mean that he sets goals too high and then gives up on them or that he just is a person that gives up.

9. Enthusiastic- Very long t bar in the word sitting, matches and everything. Everyone likes an enthusiastic person, and especially someone that is capable of emotionally expressing that emotion. There are numerous examples of this trait in the handwriting.

10. Selective listener- Closed letter e. The width of the letter o and e generally indicate how communicative a person is. When the letter e looks like a sliver, it indicates the tendency to hear what one wants to hear.

11. Honesty- Honesty can be seen in the letter o when it looks like an open o without any additional strokes inside it. Overall, there is a pattern here of honesty as seen in many open letter o’s in the writing.

12. Secretiveness- The letter o can also show secretiveness if it is made with an extra loop as in the words long and home in the phrase “a long way from home”.  Sometimes different letters will show different traits. A person may not always make the letter o the same, and any additional ways that that letter is made gives additional insight into the personality.

14. Frustrated about self- This is seen in the dot of the letter I when it’s formed as a slash aimed at the left, as in I’m an old poor boy. It’s possible that he was frustrated about being an old poor boy (if he was) while writing the stroke in this manner.

15. Jealous loop- An extra small loop in the capital E found in the word, Everything. This loop is not usually considered to be a good trait to find, as it can complicate relationships and shows a major insecurity about oneself. A jealous loop in the handwriting sample of someone with a far right slant indicates someone who can be counted on making a spectacle of this jealousy because he would not be able to control how he felt.

16. Loves attention- The ending stroke in the letter s in the word “matches”. The ending stroke rises vertically as if to say, “Here I am. Call on me. Look at me.” Either a handwriting sample has this or it doesn’t. Carl loves attention.

Dr. Donna Schwontkowski is a Certified Handwriting Analyst and runs a website on this topic at www.funhandwritinganalysis.com. She can be reached at 916-649-8323 for personal and private handwriting analyses.

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