News Posted: January 10, 2006
Anyway we have been busier then a one armed paper hanger in a windstorm trying to get a lot of things done, some we did get done, some we didnít but bet your boots we will.
The main thing we have been trying to do is get all this equipment hooked up so we can put the show on inner net radio which will reach around the world and some of the music you and I have talked about over the past ten years or so I will be able to play it for you, all you will have to do is punch up the web address on your computer and there weíll be 3 or 4 hours a day, so if you have some cows and do some milkiní in the morning, make sure you have an extra computer in your barn with some big speakers, the bigger the speakers the better we will sound.
And>>>even if you donít milk any cows but have a barn, sit up a computer out there and turn it on anyway for the live stock, it is a proven fact that music makes horses and cattle feel real calm, besides I got a quarter that says no cow ever walked up to you and said "I donít like Merle Haggard" and I can see your pony now struttiní around when we play "Happy Trails To You" and when we get the show on the road if your cows not happy (that is if you have one) weíll send you a free album, canít beat that with a stick.
I used to milk a few cows when I was growing up in Kentucky, Uncle Johnny or Uncle Elmer would haul my tail outaí bed at five in the morning, Aunt Pearly would have that gravy and biscuits and a big slice of smoke house ham a cookiní on the stove, wow-wee what a smell to wake up to, thought I had died and went to heaven, when I drug myself outa bed and down to the kitchen it was my job to fetch the gallon bucket of milk from the spring that was held down with a big rock, it was colder then a witches hair.
I remember like it was yesterday one evening in the fall, it was already getting dark early and by the time the milk was separated and in the bucket it was pretty much dark when I headed for the spring with the bucket of milk, I was already a little scared, shucks, I was only seven anyway I made it to the spring and was just about to sit the bucket in the water when a giant bull frog leaped in, that cold water splashed on me I hollered and to tell the truth, if the spring didnít wet my pants, then I did, I put that bucket in, put the rock on top and ran for the house, next time I took a flash light and shined that sucker all around that little spring before I even went near it.
Those were the good old days and the memory is as strong today as it was way back then, I bet there isnít one kid in a million now days that ever tasted spring water and chances are they donít even know what a spring is.
Hanging on a tree limb over hanginí the spring was a hollowed out gourd that Uncle Johnny had hollowed out in the spring and hung up in the summer sun to dry, we used that for a water dipper for that cool clear sweet spring water, every year he hollowed out a couple new ones, one for the spring, one for the kitchen, even though there was no running water I would bring up a two gallon bucket of fresh spring water before we headed for the barn.
You know what? them cows knew we were coming, they would start mooín and a moving around in the barn, we would throw in a few ears of corn in the trough and get the milkiní done, while Bernice was chompí in on that corn. I really liked trying to hit one of the kitties in the kisser with a shot of milk, most times I made it, but them kitties stuck around Ďtill I did hit the target, after that they would lay around a while then head out to look for a fresh mouse, one thing for sure, a barn ainít a barn with out some kitty cats, seldom did we ever see a mouse, but they did.
Thinking back about asking you to put a computer in your barn, we didnít even have a radio out there, we had one big old Atwater Kent in the house, it had a battery in it that weighed as much as a fat baby, both Uncles that lived about five miles apart that my brother and I took turns staying with had the radio antennas strung up an oak tree in the front yard, and I will never forget Uncle Elmer tying that wire to a rock and trying to throw it over the tree, we thought he was crazy, we didnít know what a wire up a tree was suppose to do, Uncle Charley wasnít sure either, he only knew the radio worked better the higher up that tree he could throw that wire.
That old radio came on when the Grand Ole Opry started and went off when it ended, there could have been world war six at Uncle Elmerís house and we would never have known it Ďtill we got bombed, the paper in town only came out once a week but he didnít subscribe any way, the only thing they did get regular was a Sears Catalog, Grand Ma liked the Spiegel catalog better so when it came out one of us would ride into town and get one.
I donít know where them catalogs came from but I know where most of them ended up that came to our part of Kentucky, in the out house>>wow-wee just thinking back on using a page out of a Sears catalog to do what had to be done on a cold winter morniní, the only thing a person could hope for was, he didnít end up with a catalog in that out house with nothing left but the color pages, they was twice as stiff as them black and white pages.
Dadís gone now but I will never forget the story he told me about an old man in town that used to whack anybody that got near him with his cane, especially the boys.
One Halloween evening a few of the boys (including my Dad) snuck over to his house a little after dark and moved his out house back about three feet and covered the old hole with stretched burlap bags and dead grass which pretty much matched the rest of the old manís yard, sometime between the moving of the out house and day light the old man had to make the trip, and down he went, he hollered so loud some one passing down the road heard him and pulled him out. Needles to say, the old man never whacked any more kids with that old walkiní stick.
I guess everything has been said about an out house that can be said, Billy Ed Wheeler pretty much covered it when he sang about "The Little Brown Shack Out Back" and I am sure if I dug around other people in song have mentioned the shack out back.
Now Kentucky nights were cold enough in the winter but can you imagine Butte, Montana at three oíclock in the morning in December making your way out to the shack and the ground is covered with six inches of new snow and the wind a whistliní up your nighty.
Boy todayís kids will never have no good memories like that, I wouldnít have missed it for the world, come to think of it, I think I would have, that is if I could have.
Well kids, I donít know how I got started on "Outhouses" itís not got a thing to do with country music unless you care to write a song about it and most will agree enough has been said about outhouses >> just another memory in the book of life.
Here is a little item from todayís paper that ought to sit the ASPCA up in arms, a guy in Ft Sumner, New Mexico (home of the Billy The Kid Museum) threw a mouse on a pile of burning leaves, the mouse caught fire and ran into the guys house and sat the house on fire, in my opinion he would have been better off saying, here kitty-kitty.
I want to thank all my old friends who have taken the time to sit down and make us up some promo spots for our up-coming show, Walkiní Charley Aldridge out did him self with guitar and all to tell us some little stories and call all of his friends to listen in, Hugh X Lewis, what a friend he has been, The tall Texan, Mr. Billy Walker has got some on the way, Joe Paul Nichols from down Jacksboro, Texas way and now working on about his number 23 album (CD) and we were really honored to receive some great promo spots from the great steel player Ralph Mooney, thanks RalphÖNot only has Reuben Darnell sent us some great spots but everything he can get his hands on of his Dadís music, Bozo Darnell, and if you are a true country fan like we know you are you must remember Bozoís great song of "Iíll Be Your Steppiní Stone" and the list goes on and weíll play um all, just great stuff >>and my good friend the old Country Bumpkin Cal Smith who is always there when I ask him for a favor, and his wife Darlene who every time I ask for a Cal Smith song that I donít have, a couple days later itís in the mail. Of course Freddie Hart my friend for more years then either of us want to add up in public because he still donít look as old as the years we have known each other.
There are many others that said they were sending us spots but I learned a long time ago, donít count no chickens before they hatch, I also know if they say they will, they will and we really do appreciate it, Rick Tucker who has been a friend for a hundred years give or take 50 made us up some spots, he started off his singing career recording at the Norman Petty studio in Clovis, New Mexico and most every one knows who and what came from Clovis.
I know we will be getting more and more and we will be thanking all of them as they come in
And speaking of Freddie Hart, he will be in Fort Worth the 27th of this month, and I think his guest will be Leona Williams (who in Freddieís words, says, boy that lady sure sings a good song) and Ferlin Husky who just got out of the hospital a week or two ago so please, if you can go see them all>>Heading up the band will be another Texan, Tony Douglas who just sings the fire out of any thing he latches on to, if you do make the show buy one of Tonyís great albums if youíve a mind to, Iím telliní ye, there good, to say nothing about Tony being a fine gentleman.
Now, one other thing about Mr. Freddie is, in February he will be going to his old home town of Phenix City, Alabama (you say the town like the one in Arizona "Phoenix") where they are going to name a street or boulevard after him and all of his real family will be there to greet him so go if you can, if you are going I will let you know the date as soon as he tells me or call the Mayor in Phenix City.
Anyway, this last year he was inducted into the Nashville Song Writers Hall Of Fame and a short while later we received a BMI award for over 2 million air plays for "Easy Lovin"" which is probably just a drop in the bucket as to how many times it really has been played, two million plays were just the number of plays reported.
What I am really thankful for is all of those that are giving him what he deserves before he dies, these are things to share with family and those that stuck by you through thick and thin, but as you well know before you get any honor now days you are either dead or about to be, and if that donít suck, chickens donít cluck.
I know I told you this when it happened but to me it just lingers in my mind, Freddie, dog gone near got himself locked up a couple years ago for feeding the birds, yep, feeding the birds>>The city he lives in so they say had passed an ordinance about feeding wild birds and pidgins on any property in that city, Freddie would come to our house about every six weeks and we would go to a farm feed store and buy about seven hundred pounds of bird seed and thatís a lot of bird seed, he fed birds on the back of his property like Alfred Hitchcock would have been proud of, but the law caught him and gave him a citation to appear in court, Freddie did and the judge ask him, "do you feed the squirrels to?" Freddie said "yes sir I do" the judge said "thatís a stupid law anyway, have a good day sir" and Freddie Walked out.
I was kinda hopeín they would lock him up, the publicity from a dumb thing like that might have got us another hit record.
I was even going to make up wanted posters: WANTED DEAD OR ALIVE>>FREDDIE HART>>LAW BREAKER>>AND KNOWN BIRD FEEDER>>REWARD.
Then I was going to call Bob Barker, I heard Bob say one time on his TV show he chases flies out the door and wonít even kill one, just think how he would react to a bird feediní country singer.
Just another memory in the book of life:
Thanks a million to the hundred and some folks that sent us Christmas cards, I will keep them Ďtill the end, I never throw anything away, and now and then through the year I go back and read them again>>The love and friendship should be 365 days a year, but I know some folks get so busy they just donít have time to write or call and then we wake up one morning and the person you intended to call or write died last night.
I will never forget a couple years ago I gave Cowboy Monte Hale a CD of various singing Cowboys and he was one of them on it, we sat and talked for about an hour on a cafť patio and when I got in my car to leave he shouted loud enough to be heard for a mile "I LOVE YOU" thank goodness those around knew both of us and that neither one of us is or was gay, now I donít have anything against gay people, I just ainít one and neither is old Monte, he just loves people and that includes every body, bless his old heart, he is just about the end of the singing cowboys.
We have received the latest from good friend Lawton Williams which will go into our catalog and to any radio stations wanting a copy, Lawton not only sings but is a writer to no end like Gene Watsonís "Farwell Party" and Bobby Bareís "Shame On Me" and Bobby Helmís "Fraulein" and the list goes on and right now there are several radio stations already on this one>>The title of this CD is called "Mending Fences" and contains an even dozen songs from this master song writer and story teller.
This CD is 12.95 postage paid and you have the address from our web site which is www.countryclassics.com easy to order and shipped the same day.
Larry Simpson down in Fort Worth, Texas has given me an opportunity to do what I like best in this whole world and thatís play country music on one of his radio stations, now at first I wasnít sure if I wanted to do it again on the air because with several thousand albums racked up out there I could go sit out there all night in my own radio station and play them great old songs Ďtill I either fell asleep or fell over, which ever came first.
Friend Charley Aldridge talked about going out and buying a radio station he do the great old westerns and me do the country but still I wasnít sure if I wanted to do it again, then I became friends with a world class song writer Lawton Williams and he started in on me to do this and still I wasnít sure if I wanted to do it again.
The money a person can make on most radio stations, well letís just say if the sheriff tells you to get outa town you gotta get a loan for a bus ticket, so just keep in mind when you hear them little country stations out there in them small towns itís pure love not fame or fortune that keeps them guys and playing that good old country music.
But things are looking up with the new age of computers and satellites so maybe there will be changes, I will say this though if any one wants me to play anything but the heart of real country music I am outa here like a peeling on a banana.
I donít know everything about a lot of things but my love for country music now and always has been my medicine when I was sick and my kick in the pants when I am well, which is most of the time.
So when we have made a few more connections we will give it a shot and maybe talk to some of the friends that have been reading what we wrote on our country music web site country news for the past ten years, we really do thank all of you that have stuck with us and read the stories we have dug up-re-wrote and those from our memories of friends and entertainers we have known and loved over the years and those we have been close to, and most of all those that have smiled or laughed from some of the dumb things we have said over the years, with out a smile or laugh now and then, none of it is worth it anyhow.
So hang in there, the minute we
go on the air we will do a new web site news the same night so you will know how
to reach us, and please let us know some of the old songs you havenít heard in
years or that maybe was a favorite of your Dad and Mom, I promise you we will
make it easy for you to contact us, and to, let us know about your life and from
time to time we will tell you more about mine, I donít want to talk to every
one, just you, so once again, please stay with me and weíll take this trip
And one other thing if you donít mind GOD BLESS AMERICA and for me next year and as long as I have left to live the 25th of December I will be wishing you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year and not happy holidays, I was a Marine for nine years and I didnít fight or go to war for something I didnít believe in, I believe in America and for what it stands for, the red-the white-and the blue, and now our young friends, sons and daughters that fight for us now must always know we care we love them and we are behind them for everything they are giving usóFreedom, and no fighting man or woman from America should ever be just another name on the wall.
Iíll see ye later, but just in
case I donít, take care of yourself