Date News Posted: August 25, 2002
Dearest Dean’s only goal in life or death was to be next to her Eddie, if ever a song in this world describe the pair was the Sonny James song “You’re The Only World I Know”’.
We spent many a day with the pair in their Westlake Village home and if Eddie wasn’t getting something for Dearest, she was getting something for him, she was a whiz at puzzles and he was a whiz at remembering old friends and never forgetting a new one, he could remember the words to a song he did on stage fifty years ago like he just wrote it yesterday, she could remember the phone numbers or address of old friends that used to chase Eddie over Corriganville shooting at him, she could remember how much he got paid for a job in a night club in Barstow and he could remember the songs he sang.
When the later years came on, their love for each other just got stronger, and he could and would bring a tear to the eye of any crowd when before the show was over he would look right at her and sing “You Are The Wind Beneath My Wings”.
It was a pretty day, a day fittin’ for her to go be with Eddie where she wanted to be, Dearest was born October the 4th. 1911 in Volin, South Dakota and Eddie told me many a time when he met her he knew that was it, she was the one, he called her his Dearest and that’s the way it stayed for close to sixty years.
In the early days when I would drop by the house and there was some little somethin’ that needed fixin’ I would grab a hammer or screw driver and bang away, Eddie would fix us a cup of coffee, I loved Eddie and he knows it’s true, he wasn’t much of a cook, ‘cept peanut butter sandwiches, he even had that peanut butter sandwich in a Western cook book. He would put it in one of them toaster ovens and toast the heck out of it, he’d say, what’d ye think of that, with my lips stuck together all I could say was yum-yum. And down a quart of Cool-Aid.
Never failing, when it was time to leave he would have some money in his hand to give me and never failing I would just lay it on the dining room table and say, see ye next week, ‘till one day I just said Eddie when people have and love good friends they don’t want or even think about money, I’ll tell you what you owe me, I’ll fix your fence, you sing me a song, and that’s the way it was up until a year before he went on home.
We had got a painter over there to paint the whole house and he ask if I would mind sticking around and making sure they done it right, I said sure and the next day on my way over there I picked up a GIANT bucket of Kentucky chicken and all the fixins’, as much as I loved Eddie I knew I wouldn’t be able to talk to no painter with a mouth full of peanut butter and jelly.
So like I have mentioned before beside of Eddie’s easy chair there was most always a guitar on each side, of course two feet four inches farther on his left was Dearest’ easy chair, Eddie was always plucking on one or the other of those guitars and singing one of those great old songs and that’s what we were doing on that second day while the painters were painting the house.
I have also mentioned before that Eddie had carved from scratch out of any solid hunk of wood that he could find several guitars, on this day he ask me if I would get one of them that was hanging on the wall in the den that I had just re-done for him, I did and he tuned it all up and handed it back and I got up to go re-hang it, he said “where you goin’”? I said to take it back, you want another one, he said “Nope” I want you to put that in your car and take it home with you when you go, you would never take a dime from me but you are not going to refuse that guitar”.
Well, just thinking about that day still brings a lump, but the memory brings a smile and after all, after a while about all of life that’s left are memories of those you loved and spent time with and are able to close your eyes on a lonely night and re-live those little times again.
So on July the 12th 2002, Eddie’s Dearest joined him for the second happiest day of their life, I have no doubt that very first second Eddie laid eyes on that lady that it was forever
Just a note that brings
a smile when I think of it, some folks that knew the Dean’s more years then I
did would some times ask me, “Is her real name Dearest?” and I would say “real
name?” yes, “The one her Momma gave her?” “No” “She named her Lorene, but she
was and would forever be, Eddie’s Dearest.
After many bouts in and
out of the hospital Joe Allison lost the battle at 77.
Even though Elvis, Bing Crosby, and Patsy Cline recorded some Joe Allison penned songs it was the smooth singing Jim Reeves that tore up the charts with “He'll Have To Go”.
Joe and I both had a friend in that of Phyllis Hill, after years with TNN Phyllis now is with the Nashville Union and keeps me up on what’s going on in her part of town, it was Phyllis that ask Joe for me if he would like a copy of the script for one of his shows that he did way back yonder in those 50’s years that I had come across from the Steve Stebbins archives of gold he left me, he said “shoot yes” or----somthin’ like that, anyway, I think, with out going and finding that other script I have it was “Country America” but on that show was like a who’s-who of west coast artist and every show was, Lefty and Freddie Hart and you name it, Joe had um, and Hank Penny and Doye and a never ending list, but of course in those days that’s what we had, a never ending list of great pickers.
So long Joe, leave the
light on in the hall.
The last couple of nights have been “Listen To Great Old Records Night” for me, “Nothing” to me takes the place of those great old records, not CD’s not tapes not nothin’ because while that wax is going ‘round and ‘round I am reading that back cover and like the Twilight Zone that I can watch every six months the whole marathon like I never saw it before I can do the same with what I am reading from those album covers.
Last night I got fixed on Wynn Stewart, Tommy Overstreet and Jerry Wallace.
One of the songs on the Wynn Stewart album that I have to say, I don’t remember it at all but I sure won’t forget it this time and already played it a good dozen times was one that Wynn and Tommy Collins wrote called “I Won’t Live That Long” which is just an outstanding song, most folks thought of Tommy as being a comic type guy because he did write some funny stuff but that often happens, it is like trying to picture Rodney Dangerfield as a lover but I would say he probably has his good days.
If Town Hall Party in Compton had of been a little bit more ahead in the times they would have realized the talent they actually had on that show, some of them got to do a lot of standing around and never did get on the show for a particular night while on the stage was a bunch of jumping around silly stuff that nobody remembers to this day what they were singing, looking back at some of those old shows it ain’t hard to tell those in charge had their favorites, but so be all that I am grateful there ever was a Town Hall Party that gave some of that great talent any chance at all.
Anyway, I have been talking about Curtis Leach in a couple recent news letters and how good Curtis could do those sad recitations, after breaking out this Wynn Stewart album I would say Wynn and Curtis were friends back then, two of the songs, “Half Way In Love” and “The Tourist” Wynn and Curtis wrote and one of them sounds like Curtis is doing the talking part.
And to stick in a little note about Curtis, we have collected nine of his songs master perfect, two others we need to replace they just don’t smooth out at all and then we will have enough for a decent album if for no other reason for the collectors who saw what I did in Curtis Leach’s music and we’ll have more about Janet McBride later but for now I just want to thank her for her kind help.
Back to Wynn, Wynn’s producer or one of um, Ken Nelson who just lives up the road, said Wynn was just a great guy to work with, Ralph Mooney said he had rather fish then about anything, from a cow watering pond to the river he always carried that fishin’ pole, I know one thing, he sure sung a great country song.
On Tommy Overstreet’s “Good Lovin’ Feelin’” album that was released in Germany there are some great songs on it, three of them co/wrote by Dale Vest but the one that kept me sitting down the needle was “I Guess I’m Good For Something After All” that is just a great song and as far as I am concerned Tommy Overstreet could burp in a fruit jar and we would buy three copies, “Wanted Everywhere But Home” and “When I’ve Drank Texas Dry” are two more of Dale and T.O’s songs that if you have the money to buy a radio station then you ought to and we’ll send you a copy of this album to play.
So much good music is just laying around waiting to get re-born again, man what I wouldn’t give for, what was it, XERB and that other station down there in the 50’s that broadcast out of Mexico that covered the bottom side of America with some country music that would just make your liver quiver going down highway 66 on a slow rainy night.
Jerry Wallace was almost like Eddie Dean in that, he sang almost to good, I reckon that sounds stupid but neither had that country catch in their voice, not that that’s good or bad but you gotta’ admit they were smooth singers, I loved old Jerry and still do, the one I pulled off this album the other night “Sound Of Goodbye” is really a great song, two others on this album are from the pen of my friend Cindy Walker “The Love Song Of The Year” and “Hot Line”.
I don’t know how Jerry’s songs rated as best sellers but I know “Primrose Lane” was a monster for him but it was that one that got hung up on the jukebox on the Twilight Zone that everybody seems to remember, I almost forgot the name of it “If You Leave Me Tonight” I think it was, anyway it’s really funny how something like that happens and unless you heard it on the radio you never did hear the whole song.
Some one told me the
other day that Mr. Wallace is alive and well and doing what he wants to be doing
which is retired I guess; he gave us some great music and I’m sure, still has
many fans out there.
Hugh Cherry wrote the liner notes for an album that really doesn’t even have a title but on the cover it says 5 String Banjo “Don Parmley” with 12 string guitar “Billy Strange”, anyhow I just wanted to say that what little I have heard of Don Parmley’s singing, I could listen to another truck load of his recordings, the first time I heard him sing was a Merle Haggard song “Wake Up” from the Blue Grass Cardinals album which is just a killer album, not just that one song but all of it and I have to say, especially that one.
This old (actually it’s
like new) but it can’t be new if Hugh Cherry wrote the notes, Crescendo Album is
full of really good pickin’ with this un-real line up of pickers, Don Parmley,
Billy Strange, LeRoy McNees, Chris Hillman, Hal Blain and Vern & Equen Gosdin.
Found an old picture while I was a diggin’ around, listen to this line up, from left to right Old Frog (Smiley Burnett) Foy Willing, Cottonseed Clark, Tex Ritter, Eddie Dean and a little short guy from the Union lookin’ good in his little tweed suit with pen stripes.
In fact all these guys have got on the 50’s gangster hats like Boston Blackie, good-looking crew.
Ran across a really good story on Tex Williams, it’s really a little four page folder with a couple pictures in the middle, most of the story I think was written by Ken Griffis who spent many a great year around these parts writing about folks and doing a lot of research on just about every one, it is folks like him that have left all these great stories for us all to go back and say “What year was that so and so did what?” “Who was in that band” It is those stories and those really great old pictures that they ask the Tex William’s and the Doye O’Dell’s and the Tex Ritter’s to stand still a minute while they took them that has given us all those great memories to look back on, so thanks to Ken Griffis and all the others that left a story and a picture for us all to remember.
I did not know Joaquin
Murphy, I wish I had of because they tell me he was a steel guitar pickin’ fool
and Tex Williams must have thought so to because at one time he was apart of
Tex’s Western Caravan, but in this particular picture of the group, all of them
are smiling, all that is except Joaquin who is on the left side of the picture
with the expression on his face, snap that camera quick, I gotta’ pee, anyway
this picture is from 1948 here is the rest of the line up Spike Featherstone,
Rex Call, Max Fidler, Cactus Soldi, Muddy Berry, Benny Garcia, Smokey Rogers,
Pedro DePaul, Johnny Weiss, (Tex) Ossie Godson, and Deuce Spriggens.
Like Elvis, there is an Indian in Clovis, New Mexico that only uses one name. I guess if enough people know you, one name is enough.
Sometime ago we mentioned this Chief his name is Cherokee and he is an artist, an artist of mostly Western Art and according to people who really know good art from just art, he is a good one.
Cherokee has done many of the whole art layouts for the Roy Rogers exhibits in Victorville, California, he has art almost all the way around the Gene Autry Museum in Gene Autry, Oklahoma and just an outstanding wall of western art on the side of a building in Clovis depicting scenes from the old west and shining bright in the corner looking down is his friend Iron Eyes Cody.
Here is the bottom line, Cherokee is in poor health, and he has many, many posters he needs to sell because the expenses are mounting as he gets in even worse health.
He has art that he has drawn on dog-gone near every cowboy that ever hit the screen including William S. Hart and only he knows how much farther back.
So here’s the deal, he has plenty of little samples and folders and any other information you would like to ask him about his art.
Now he will send you some samples or like we said answer questions or what ever it takes if you will just drop him a note or letter, he does not have a computer but it will be well worth your 37cent stamp to write him.
He won’t like me saying this but if you have a couple extra stamps send them to him if you don’t mind, what you get back from him you’ll be glad you did.
Here is his address, I would give you his phone number but I don’t know when he is resting but I am sure he will send it to you if you ask, you will really like him he has been a good friend for a long time and now he needs help.
Clovis, New Mexico 88101
Thanks I pure do appreciate it:
We got to spend a little time this week talking with Dale Robertson at a western art show, he ain’t exactly jumping’ a rope but he is still doing pretty dang fair and still full of them stories.
Peter Brown and Peter Breck were both there as was our old friend Herb Jeffries, now there is a case, Herb turned 90 this year and there is no way you would believe that either seeing him in person or a brand new picture, but remember this, he was a grown young man and working with Duke Ellington in the 40’s and had at least one big hit by then “Flamingo”
Herb is still working
concerts, I don’t really know if he still has his contract with Warner Westerns
but they did release a couple albums (CD’s) on him, he has a wonderful wife
Savana and is just one happy camper that every one that knows him, loves him.
Freddie Hart worked a show just out side Little Rock about two weeks ago with Hank Thompson, and tonight he is in Alabama with Jett Williams, this is a make up show, him and Jett tried to do it a couple months ago but it rained them out, they did get to spend some time with their fans and that probably was the best part of all.
As far as I know Don Sessions is still down there some place in Oklahoma sitting up those CD racks (or having it done) with Freddie’s and several other artist CD’s, Sessions label called “Legend Records” in case you see the racks through out Oklahoma buy a couple CD’s.
Freddie’s CD is worth the price just for the first song “These Old Eyes Have Seen It All”.
Actually this package is probably the best buys on the market, each package contains both a CD and a Cassette album in a snap open snap close blister pack for 9.95.
If we could turn back the pages of time to when all those “De-Coder Rings” and “Hoppy” lunch boxes and “Roy Rogers” guitars were in the middle of comic books and you could order a truck load and put it aside until 2002, then put it on eBay or the inner net anywhere you would probably be rich in six months and if you kept the box it came in you would be double rich.
Who would have ever thought growing up that when you got a wind up toy or about any kind of toy that cost the folks a couple bucks that fifty years latter the box it came in would be worth as much as the toy it’s self now sells for.
Well we don’t know where you can buy a “De-Coder Ring” but we have located the company that started making them (in the 40s) the toy guitars that we never had the money to buy and after a few phone calls made a deal with them to buy them at a price where every one that wants one can afford to buy one “Still in the box” for 29.95, now granted that’s a little more then they sold for in 1940 but this ain’t Marvel Comics and this ain’t 1940 but they are still a heck of a collectors item to hang on your wall and when you think of how much other things have gone up over the years that’s really not a drastic rise in price.
Cherokee my Indian friend and I was just talking a few minutes ago about him going to the westerns in his home town of Paducah, Kentucky which cost 10 cents, for a quarter you could have a field day at the picture show, candy soda pop and pop corn, now according to the sign out front at the local theater it’s seven dollars and fifty cents, old folks get in for a little less but it ain’t no dime and Roy Rogers is not up there on Trigger and most them movies today we couldn’t even get in back in those good old days, if they even had um.
Anyhow these are the ones we are able to get>Roy Rogers>Hopalong Cassidy>Gene Autry>The Lone Ranger and Dale Evans, they have added some new ones to the collection which are really neat including Willie Nelson and The Riders In The Sky, the Willie Nelson guitar has his picture on it along with many of his hit songs which if you are a Willie fan then you know what those are, if you are interested in that one and want to see it I can copy the flyer and send you.
Last month so we could see if they were worth it all we picked up a Hoppy and a Gene guitar, everybody that walks in says “wheren’the heck did you get those”.
Postage on these things
is only a couple bucks.
I always have to say something about postage every chance I get and I have said this before, I hate it when either on late night TV or mail order catalogs those 19.95 items they sell all night long if you are not careful you can really get screwed because down there someplace in little bitty print that no way Grandma can read it says (shipping and handling 5.95 and up) that sucks, in the first place that handling bull is just that bull, if you can’t put it in a package, don’t sell it, another ad reads, ‘We’ll “give you” the item just pay the shipping and handling” any one with two marbles knows they mass produce those things for 80cents, media mail postage is a buck or less so figure that out if they sell a million copies at 5.95 each to people who think they are getting something for free.
When we even find mailer envelopes, free boxes or packing bubbles cheap we take it off the CDs or tapes we sell and as far as the handling goes when we get to lazy to stick it in a box and charge for it, we’ll quit
We got an email today from some kinfolk of Town Hall Party’s Texas Jenx’s Carman from down Kentucky way, that’s how we get to know a lot about some of these great artists from the past, from their families and memories that they re-call about them from by-gone years.
One that we haven’t heard from in a while is Wynn Stewarts little girl Wren, who the last time we did was really happy some one was putting most all her Dad’s music in one package.
If we can get any re-prints of Mr. Carman’s old bios or anything else from his kin by the next news we will sure include it.
Like we have said before, these stories and mentions of those classic artists from days gone by are not to tell you everything there is to be said about them, it’s just so you won’t ever forget them.
Well the old web site is just about totally re-finished all the articles should be back on line and ready to check out again, all our addresses are still the same from postal box, fax and email and phone so write when you feel like it, send us any stories you may have on those great old greats we don’t hear about anymore.
Like we have said before, these stories and mentions of those classic artists from days gone by are not to tell you everything there is to be said about them, it’s just so you won’t ever forget them.
That’s going to do it for this time, and if you have read this far, we sure do appreciate it.
We’ll see ye later but just in case we don’t, take care of yourself.