Date News Posted: January 21, 2012
Well here it is January already and I have to tell you I could have done completely without the year of 2011.
My Brother passing away in August just pulled the cork from everything he and I had planned. A year ago we were talking about our trip back to Kentucky, sometimes on the phone 3 or 4 times a day anytime one or the other of us would think of something to tell the other one.
Now? Who knows, thatís one I will have to figure out.
Thanksgiving was good though, twenty some people dropped by for dinner, most we knew, some we didnít but all went good and two turkeys and a ham are now history.
We must have had at least 6 folks write us still wondering if we had found family of Ivan Jesse Curtis, the answer to that is still no but I hope one of them sees this and will drop us an e-mail. Those who donít know who Ivan was, he was a young artist that was just a whiz at drawing the great old western cowboys and side kicks and about anything else that had a western touch.
Anyone that loved the old western movies and have seen or maybe even have an Ivan Jesse Curtis piece of art wants another one or maybe their first one if they saw one at a friends house. Anyway, if we find his kin and they will give us an address, email or otherwise we will sure let you know next time.
Here is a fact for ye: If you love the great classic country music and you must or you wouldnít be reading this (probably) and you do not subscribe to RFD TV then you are letting some great and I mean great country music just pass you by. Larry Black who produces "Family Reunion" on RFD and also sells the videos if you missed it the first time or just want it for your archives is the man to get in touch with. He also produces "Larryís Country Diner" the diner usually only has one guest artist each show, sometimes two but he gives them plenty of time to tell some stories and sing a few songs as does Bill Anderson on "Family Reunion".
AND---since going into a store like the good old days and buy a record that you heard on the radio, well now days, those days are slim to noneÖBUT Larry on his little blackboard will ask the artist what their web site is and make sure it is written on the board so you can order that artist CD straight from him or her.
Otherwise you would probably not even know they had a new record and if you did where to buy it, now you do. Larry was saying the other day that since they started "Family Reunion" some twenty plus classic artists that were on their early shows are now in Hillbilly Heaven>>
BUT thatís where the videos come in on Larryís Diner and on Reunion he will tell you how to order some of the old ones and all of the new ones including one of my favorites "The Song Writers",
The average person could give a hoot who wrote the song if they like it, but anyone that picks for a living or even a part time picker sure wonders "who wrote that?.
And one other thing, some of those guys that you will most likely never hear as being a singer on record, most of them sing a pretty dad gone good song, especially if they wrote it.
Other then the shows that Larry Black produces and airs on RFD is "Hee Haw", "Porter Wagoner" "The Wilburn Brothers", "Ralph Emery" and "Pop Goes The Country" Ralph does a couple shows, one with the music and one where he interviews some of the greatest in Classic country music artist, also some great Gospel shows some great Bluegrass shows and the "Shot Gun Red variety show. And donít forget the Marty Stewart show where Marty always features his bride Connie Smith.
RFD has a magazine you can subscribe to so you will know when all of the above shows come on and if you are going to be away from home it will give you a chance to set your recorder and watch it when you get home, easy as that.
Bottom line is, if you are country you might as well enjoy all the music you have been missing on your radio and TV too for that matter.
"Hell And High Water" was a great song for T. Graham Brown" and so was "I Tell It Like It Use To Be" and a few others, But if you get a chance give a listen to "Wine Into Water" itíll make your liver quiver, at least it did mine, great song.
I am still debating weather to release Sonny Martinís single of "Rock A Bye Baby" that he gave me permission to do before he up and died on me, even though it is a great song if it is if not the saddest song I ever heard or a darn close second, I donít know what is.
Everyone that I have sent a copy to said they were having trouble listening to it a second time, not that it wasnít good but because it was so sad. Anyway, thatís what "Country" is all about>>tell it like it is.
Texas is putting out some great country music but after Rick Tucker a native Texan sent me a copy of a Brian Burns CD a while ago I realized what country music use to sound like and the good part is you can find him on your computer and get yo-seff a sample. OR--you can move to Denmark and a lot of other foreign countries where Country Music is played every day, New Zealand has been playing the music we sent them on Freddie Hart for a year or more and keep him on their charts every single week along with many other country artists that you well know from those good old days. And a PS on that little note, if you have got a hankeriní to do so a lot of those country stations are no farther away then your computer.
We get emails and cards and letters and you name it from all over, telling us when an artist is sick or has passed away and I can tell you, this has been a bad year.
Song writer Don Wayne has passed away and of all the songs Don has written I am sure the one remembered most is "Country Bumpkin".
Wade Mainers who was a bluegrass legend for many years (and always will be) has passed away at 104 years old, now that was a nice long life.
And you will remember Wilma Lee & Stoney Cooper, Wilma Lee has passed away, bless her heart she was 90
Country Johnny Mathis, an artist I always liked when I could find his records has passed away at 80.
The great duo team of Johnny & Jack set the people to a great beat on the Opry in the late 40s with Poison Love" and "Ashes Of Love" Jack passed away some years ago and now Johnny at the age of 97
October the 31st singer/songwriter Liz Anderson passed away at the age of 81. Liz wrote All My Friends Are Gonna Be "Strangers" for Merle Haggard and also wrote for him "The Fugitive" both songs were giant hits for Merle. And of course the whole world knows her daughter Lynn Anderson who has hit after hit, like "Rose Garden" and the list goes on.
Now I donít know much about Jimmy Lee Fautheree who recorded for Capitol from 1951 thru 1955. Born in Smackover (now thereís a name for ye) Arkansas on April the 11th 1934 and has passed away June 29th 2004.
I need to find some of Jimmyís old records and give a listen.
Paul Yandell from Mayfield, Kentucky who was a guitar player for the great Louvin Brothers, then The Johnny Wright show Ďtill 1969 then later with George Hamilton, Jerry Reed, and Paul was also a session player for dozens of the greatest singers of the 50s.
I donít have his age but Jerry Clowerís son Ray Clower has passed away. His father Jerry Clower along with his funny stories (Jerry was a feed salesman) at sales meetings for his job was asked one day if he ever made a record, he said no but that changed shortly after and soon the world of funny country would know the name Jerry Clower. Jerry got rich talking about his home in Yazoo City, Mississippi.
We told you it was a bad year and thank goodness 2011 is a year of the past.
No sooner do I get the words out, it ainít over yet when the word from Vidor, Texas is that Billy Jo Spears has died at the age of 72. Billy Jo only had one giant hit and that was "Blanket On The Ground" in 1975."Blanket" had a real catchy beat to it, it was a good song and she took it to the top. Billy Jo, born in Beaumont, Texas and at 13 started out on the Louisiana Hayride radio show out of Shreveport.
A couple of other songs you might remember from Billy Jo are "Mr. Walker Itís All Over," "What Iíve Got In Mind" in 1976 and "If You Want Me" in 1977.
Well everybody, I hope you have a great New Year. Did you ever think back when we called the year 19 something or another we would still be alive in the year 2012, holey moley, as old Willie said "Ainít It Funny How Time Slips Away".
I will try to find some of these artist and painters you are looking for and I was just thinking this morning, that I donít know how much longer I will be doing this site, I know I have said that before but if you look at the list above then you have to wonder like I do, who in the world am I going to write about.
I think this is our 14th year doing this, so many of the great country singers we grew up with on that old radio are now gone but you have to think of it this way, if all these artists are together in heaven, goodness what a show we will someday be seeing.
I am going to miss you Bub, I look at all the great pictures we took along the way, pictures with you and Ben Johnson and Eddie Dean and Sugar Foot and John Agar and Johnny Mitchum and Freddie Hart and Walter Brennan Jr. and a whole lot more but the ones that mean the most are those of you and me. And you can bet your boots I will be seeiní ye one of these days. You were a great Brother.
Without a doubt the fastest growing Bluegrass record label in the country is "Rural Rhythm Records" now what ever and which ever country music magazines release play list charts "R.R." has usually got somewhere between 3 & 5 in those charts and it is no wonder. If you are a Country station that plays Bluegrass music it would be well worth your while to contact R.R records and get a list or catalog and maybe some promotion copies (If you are a radio station) and help promote these artist and I can promise you there is some great stuff on this label.
This is not a new label many, many years ago we bought albums from the then owner Uncle Jim OíNeal long before the word CD was ever heard, Uncle Jim operated out of his garage, many week ends my old friend Smiley Monroe would go over and help Uncle Jim pack up and mail out the weeks orders. I canít even think of all the great old original artist at that time that was on that label, more country then bluegrass was Bradley Kincaid (wonder how I remembered that name) the stories on Kincaid are good stories. Anyway the R.R. Nashville office is at www.ruralrhythm.com and you can talk to my old friend Rick Fowler at 615-828-1911 or firstname.lastname@example.org .
So tell Rick we sent you and he may give you something (but probably not--well maybe an autographed picture)
I can assure you one thing; they have some of the greatest names in bluegrass on that label.
Here is a good country radio station for you if you have something country on a disc you want to send them, it is
Madison, Fl 32341
Attn Betty Everett
Friend Johnny Seay who these days other than a country singer is also a pilot he flies so close to the ground he can smell the tobacco on a grasshopperís chin, he is a crop duster down Texas way and I donít think crop dusting is for the weak at heart, some of the maneuvers these pilots make is just something else.
If I were a crop duster and was taking along passengers for the ride the first question I would ask them is "Have you eaten any beans in the last two days?" You can find Johnnyís name and music on google, back when I was D.Jín I played the heck outaí Johnnyís "Willieís Drunk And Nellieís Dying" which is still a great song. (Take a look)
I donít know what they are worth but over the years Walter Brennan Jr. (Andy) picked up, or Randolph Scott gave him 4 or 5 of his movie posters, they are what you would call regular size I guess about two feet wide and 30 inches high. I found pictures I took of 3 of them which are>"The Nevadan" with Dorothy Malone/ Forrest Tucker/Frank Faylen & George Macready.
Number two is "Buffalo Stampede" with Barton MacLane/Raymond Hatton and Judith Allen.
And the 3rd one is with Forrest Tucker/Mala Powers J.Carrol Nash/Edgar Buchanan and Howard Petri , the name of this movie was called "Rage At Dawn" and of course all three star The great movie cowboy Randolph Scott.
If you are a poster collector you might want to buy these to add to your collection, how much does he want for them? I donít know, but if you are interested let me know and I will ask him, he gives the money to charity.
Both from those great 50s years.
One is by Smiley Monroe called "Paul Bunion Love" which was released on a small label in those 50s years; It was one of Smileyís biggest sellers
And the other one is by>
Rick Tucker, on the Veeda record label called "Iíll Be There b/w Karen My Love recorded and released from the Gene Sullivan studios in Oklahoma, City, in the year of 1959
Before we go this time I need to thank the best cousin a person could ever have and thatís my cousin Corine who made us feel right at home when my Brother died and we headed home to Kentucky, her cookiní is second to none and Jimmy Bell who loaned me his car and helped me out as long as we were there and cousin Linda, Corineís daughter who drove from Indiana, to Columbia, Kentucky then back to Louisville, Kentucky then back to Columbia again just to pick me up from the airport, I thank you all and I love you and I miss all those that mean a lot to me if your not the best I donít know who is.
We will see you all before to long, I will try not to make it as long as it was this time but things happen.
Next news thanks to Walkiní Talkiní Charley Aldridge we will have some stories about the Arizona gun fighters and a few other things, and I hope it is not something about another one of our great country artists passing away.
See ye next time but just in case we donít take care of yourself.
We love ye and God bless America