I Am the Body Beautiful: Our Favorite Patrick Swayze Musical Movie Moments

It's only been a few hours, and we already miss Patrick Swayze. The Houston native won our hearts as the sensitive yet murderous Dalton in Road House and the senstive yet Confederate Orry Main in North and South. Here at Rocks Off, however, we want to take a moment to commemorate the musical legacy of the man's body of work.

And what a body, are we right?

5. Loverboy, "Working for the Weekend"(Saturday Night Live): So now both the stars of the Chippendales skit have died. We could use this opportunity to bludgeon you with warnings about lifestyle choices, but the amount of cocaine and morphine taken by Chris Farley would've killed him even if he wasn't morbidly obese. And while Swayze's smoking undoubtedly led to his pancreatic cancer, it helped him maintain a killer physique. Honestly, we're a little conflicted.

4. Salt 'N Pepa, "I Am the Body Beautiful" (To Wong Foo, Thanks for Everything, Julie Newmar): Swayze's career was in decline by the mid-90s, following box office disappointments like City of Joy and Father Hood, but it was still a surprise when the former action star vamped it up as a drag queen. Then again, the guy studied ballet as a kid, so it isn't like he wasn't used to the insults. Frankly, we were more impressed at how well Wesley Snipes walked in heels.

3. Patrick Swayze, "Raising Heaven (In Hell Tonight)" (Road House): What's that? Another actor trying to bum-rush his way into a singing career? Hey, nobody's perfect. To the filmmakers' credit, they stuck this on the soundtrack and didn't try a stunt move like having Dalton hop on stage with Jeff Healey. Because nobody would believe any man could fight, wax philosophic and sing. He'd be like Jesus.

2. Righteous Brothers, "Unchained Melody" (Ghost): This was more or less obligatory. After all, Ghost earned obscene amounts of money and - for a short time, anyway - made Swayze the hottest actor on the planet. We find it interesting that, for how much it's hammered into the audience how much these two love each other, Molly never takes her shirt off. Somebody has intimacy issues, and it's not the guy secure enough in his masculinity to rock a dorky haircut like that, we can tell you.

1. Patrick Swayze, "She's Like the Wind" (Dirty Dancing) Say what you want about this uncomfortable paean to deflowering an underage girl, at least it's not as embarrassing as "Raising Heaven." And it's still light years ahead of anything Billy Bob Thornton or Russell Crowe ever recorded.

BONUS: The Hounds, "Under My Thumb" (Skatetown, U.S.A.): The role that started it all in a movie that has it all: the leather-clad "Ace," a disco cover of a Stones song and a cathedral-like roller disco arena. The fact that Swayze - or America, for that matter - survived this is proof of a benevolent higher power, and the main reason we renounced atheism.

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Peter Vonder Haar writes movie reviews for the Houston Press and the occasional book. The first three novels in the "Clarke & Clarke Mysteries" - Lucky Town, Point Blank, and Empty Sky - are out now.
Contact: Pete Vonder Haar