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Date News Posted: May 22, 2014

It wasn't too many years ago that Branson was just a peaceful little town,
one street down the middle and a country music park somewhere out of town.
The town was pretty much surrounded with blue lakes and plenty of fish.
And then someone came to town and said, what a great place for a theater,
maybe we could draw some of the country music people to Branson because at
that time more and more people were getting sick of all the hype in
Nashville and from there it grew and grew when people like Mel Tillis and
Andy Williams and Moe Bandy and then came later when it was growing but
still pretty new Box Car Willie and the list just grew.

My friend Don Hinson who bought his house there about 20 years ago for somewhere in the 30 grand area is now probably worth 3-4 times that much, he
will never know that though he has already gone on home, so people with
money and investments buy ever square inch of land they can find and build,
build, build condos big and small and sell or rent them for a fortune.

But if we live long enough and no new artist thinks it is a big deal then
slowly one by one the people will disappear, no artist, no theaters no
work, so all you can hope for in time is that you are old enough to collect
your S.S. if there still is such a thing and that you have a good supply of
fishing poles and worms and we just hope you like fish.

Nashville it's self is really no big deal anymore and never will be like
those days of Roy Acuff and when what is now called major artist saying
"nobody likes that shit anymore, that music they listen to from back then is
only for old farts" on radio, TV, news print or where ever they say it
well>>>>"May The Bird Of Paradise Fly Up Your Nose".

As far as I am concerned country stations today have about as much hart as a
bow legged possum with a corn cob up his butt, and no one that has any love
or respect at all for real country music needs or wants to see an artist (?)
Running from one end of a stage to the other screaming out words nobody
understands and I for one don't need to see a hefty site of hooters from any
female singing (?) a love song.

I know George Bush liked country music because he said so, so, I sent him a
half dozen or so real country music CDs, I said, these are to be played in
your old pick up on your Texas ranch, he must have liked them, six weeks
later he (?) signed and sent me an 8X10...But he is to blame for not
starting a country music singing school headed up by Gene Watson and George
Strait or "What's Bluegrass" headed up by Rickey Skaggs.
Sure I know presidents can't get involved with stuff like that, or can they?
Look what this president thinks he can do.

In years past when I was a Marine at Camp Pendleton I could drive from
California to Kentucky or Indiana and them few fifty thousand watt radio
stations would boom out like an Oklahoma juke box playin' one country song
after an another and them miles behind me just faded away, now if I want to
hear them same artist I have to fill the seat on my right with CDs and
change um now and then going eighty miles an hour down highway 40, thank
goodness though that great old highway 66 moved over and made way for 40
otherwise my hind end would probably be buried out there in that Texas sand
while I was trying to find the hole to stick a Mack Wiseman CD in and ran
off the road.

No body I know is stupid enough to think that things don't change or should
be added on too which is fine, sure the singers are going to be getting
younger, I would hope so, what we should have done was add on to not try to
replace, putting on a hat does not make you Cow Boy Copas or Hawkshaw
Hawkins and it sure don't make you Bob Wills, sing your songs anyway you
want to, make your videos on the back of a truck or naked in bed but don't
call it country that's like calling prune juice an enema.

I guess you could put your music in the Pop section of the charts but then
again no Pop singer I ever heard or watched did anything like what's going
on the stage these days, Bing Crosby or Patty Page or Connie Francis or
any of the others never screamed and ran around the stage like a bunch of
ruptured ducks, and those great black groups who were dressed to the nines
never missed a beat and those Ink Spots and Mills Brothers who's music is
still respected today, yea I'm  country alright but the love of good music
is first on the list.
One of the best loved country singers ever born, Freddie Hart who has had
hit after hit, you know who his favorite singer has always been? Nat King

If my dream was to go to Nashville and be in the clothing business unlike
California that dressed those great western stars of the day in nothing but
the finest from NUDIE the Rodeo Taylor, I would open a thrift shop selling
nothing but jeans with holes in the knees faded shirts and flip flops.

For thirteen years I was with the Americana Agency, first owned by Steve
Stebbins, Cliffie Stone and Tennessee Ernie Ford, one day a small band of
guys walked into Steve's office, the spokesman for the group said we would
like for you to hear our music and maybe find some gigs for us, those were
the days of what music was recorded on was called a record, Steve played
their record, just a demo but dang good, in fact he played it a second time
which of course impressed the little band.  When it was finished Steve asks, are you wearing your band clothes? "yes sir" he said, Steve said "well I make it a point never to book any band or any singer anywhere where my people look worse than the man who just got off
work at the saw mill, do you think any one that works his ass off all week
would pay to see a band with their pants full of holes and hair to their
belt?  The band leader said, "Mr. Stebbins, we watched Willie Nelson the other night
accept an award in Nashville he was wearing what I call shower shoes and
they applauded him so loud it almost brought the house down"
Steve said "Boys, when you get to be as rich as Willie, I don't give a hoot
if you sing naked as a jay bird".

Yep I know as a committee of one I won't be changing what we are hearing today
back to the pure sounds of 50's country, I know I will never see the real in
person Johnny Cash or Waylon or Webb Pierce, Bob Wills or Hawkshaw live or
probably otherwise meaning a re-run again on the boob tube unless of course
I move to Denmark or New Zealand, I still wouldn't be seeing any of the
above but I would dang sure be hearing their music, seeing is believing,
just bring up on your computer when you are finished reading this and bring
up New Zealand Country Radio you will be seeing names even you probably
haven't even thought of in years, Freddie Hart has been on one chart or
another over there for almost two solid years, why? Because I just keep
sending them his music even his demos and they keep playing um.

Which brings me to something else here, if you want to get your music
(country of course) played over there send them a CD don't write and tell
them about it then ask them to pay to down load it, what kind of bull is
that, if you can't afford to send them a CD of what you have just paid to
record then forget it, save up enough postage to mail them a real CD, and if
you don't think you will be paid any royalties for your music played over
there then you are thinking wrong cause I know better, so do it right.

OK here is a couple things to think about this week:
Down-load a Walkin' Talkin' Charley Aldridge book, he told me this week that
he now has 4 loaded up and ready to read, two  volumes of
"Playin Lookback" VL 1 & VL 2, "El Lobo", & "Wagon Train"

Charley has got more stories in his noggin' than 4 encyclopedias, some of
his stories are about the old west and people he has known, some are about
his years at the world famous Corriganville Movie Ranch, others about his
years as a stage performer and country singer & writer.  Remember Paul Harvey? I am sure you have heard stories over the years about them great old singers, cowboys, sidekicks, and the you name it's, but always thought there must be more to their story>>Well there probably is and like Paul Harvey always said "Now you know the rest of the story" and will
in Charley's Playin' Lookback. Which also reminds me, if you have any questions you would like to ask Charley you can always email us and we will make sure ole Charley get's your

Number #2
Check the web site of David Frizzell, yep, Lefty's brother and see what he
has new (or old) on CD and also check out his book about brother Lefty and
other things and if you see his name listed in a Casino near you, go see the
show you will see and hear a great country music singer.

Number #3
The early days of Larry Black's "Family Reunion" brought us in a lot of
email as did his "Larry' Country Diner" but not so much anymore, in fact
more emails are saying they don't watch it any more, that the DVDs are way
to high, that everyone can not afford 80 plus dollars a show and their news
paper is not worth 40 bucks a year.  We know that around 30 of the greats from the 1st shows are gone but there are 30 or more still left of the best of the best and should be brought back
every few shows.  We know that Jim Ed Brown had a show as did several of the other Country
acts of those great years, if they were brought back with Bill Anderson
MC'ing those shows and if those artist were still alive as Jim Ed is, to sit
there beside of Bill and tell stories I think would re-new people's interest
in those Saturday night shows.  I also know there are copies of the old Town Hall Party shows from  Compton, California that are still around and that show had about every name
in country music on it at one time or another, no one cares if those shows
are old and grainy, they are still worth seeing again.

Coming up real soon will be a story on Dale McBride who was kind of an
overlooked country singer in his day and that's a shame because his "Corpus
Christie Wind" and many others from his albums are sure worth your time
listining to them again.

Another one worth telling the story about is Autry Inman, a guy who really
never made the super big time but sang a great country song never the less.

Curtis Leach who was a great story teller and at one time I read where Bill
Anderson said that the song "Golden Guitar" that Curtis wrote was the only
song that Bill got into the top ten that he didn't write himself.
If it is or if it wasn't it was/is a great song>>and so is Curtis' "Lighting
Struck Twice". Most of Curtis Leach's songs are tear jerkers except "Highway
Man" which was recorded in Bakersfield with Red Simpson on bass; come to
think of it this whole album was probably recorded in Bakersfield, which
some say was the music capitol of the west in those 50's years.

Over the past couple of years we have had dozens, maybe more emails asking
about Ivan Jessie Curtis and about his art which for the most part was just
outstanding western scenes or old cowboys and or their sidekicks.
The questions were in part, what is I.J.C. art worth today? Where can they
buy some? Where can they sell some?
If you still want to know the answer to some of these questions then maybe
some of those asking have found the answers and wouldn't mind helping others
that are still looking, if so write and if it is OK with you we will connect
you.  It is for sure that Ivan was what Walter Brennan Jr. (an artist in his own
right) called Ivan "A great western artist" who left this world way too soon.

We have an artist in Amarillo, Texas who we are putting together in one
frame 4 8X10s of the great old cowboys like Red Ryder, Ken Maynard, William
S. Hart and on and on...these are not 8X10 promotion shots they are art from
this artist from Texas, he has also taken the autographs from these cowboys
from where ever he could find it and induct it under the cowboys image.
These frames of cowboy pictures look great in an old western style den or
family room...Hi Yo Silver>>Away. If you are interested email us for the price.

And that will do it for this almost Memorial Day 2014; we hope you have a
great summer.

And>>>>>>we'll see you later but just in case we don't, take care of

Don Bradley
Country Classics



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