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Date News Posted: November 4, 1997

Ray Reed "COWBOY" Though I never met Ray in person, I thank Miss Cindy Walker for introducing him to me by way of the old telephone: I really get a kick out'a talkin' to Ray, 'cause he calls a spade a spade, and good ole Ray is the kind of person you like the minute he says "hello".

I'll get back to Ray in a minute, but first a little story> When I was still living down in Kentucky, a friend of mine called me from Indianapolis and said if it was o.k. he would like to come down for a few days and did I have any horses he could ride, I said "sure, but I didn't know you knew how to ride a horse", he said "sure I do, I been ridin' for a long time". I said well, "come on down". When he got in a couple nights later it was already dark so we just sat around talkin' for a while and called it a night. About five in the morning and still dark, I heard someone yellin', sounded like it was coming from the barn so I threw on some Levi's and boots and headed that direction, when I got closer to the barn I hollered out "Hey Bill, you in there"? he said "yeah, get in here quick", I stumbled over a pile of hay (at least I thought it was hay) and went lookin'. There he sat atop the old mule that he had saddled and outside the night was just starting to turn into day letting a little flicker of light seep through the cracks in the old barn. I said "what the heck you doin'?" he said "you got a real problem here, every time I tell this horse :Giddy-Up: he goes backwards, it's probably because you haven't trimmed his mane in so long he can't see". He was a friend so I couldn't laugh, so I just said "you're right Bill, I been meanin' to take that horse to the vet for a month, you see, when the good Lord made him, he put his head on the wrong end".

Now I know Ray is an honest guy so he will tell me the truth: Now what I need to know Ray is this. " I been thinking about buying a little horse ranch and do you think this would be an all right guy for me to hire as a wrangler"?.

Years ago I wrote in an article "There is no such thing as Country Western Music, it is either Country or it is Western" that cost me a few readers but so be it.

A year or so ago my brother and I made the trip from California to North Carolina, and other than the fact that most radio stations now days don't last more than 63 miles before they fade out (if that) but when you could pick up a local station going down highway 40, the promos for the station would ring out loud and clear "MOOSE COUNTY'S NUMBER ONE COUNTRY, WESTERN STATION KMOS" From coast to coast, we never heard one, not one, Western song..I don't know why I didn't think of it sooner and probably never would have if I had not been watching a rerun of the Twilight Zone the other night, There Robots, programmed out of Arkansas.

As they would say in OLD TIME RADIO, now back to our story. After reading all the great articles and magazines that Ray Reed and Candice sent me from Ruidoso, New Mexico, it almost makes me want to say something bad about the town so nobody would want to go there but me. All the great little towns are getting so crowded anymore that when someone finds a nice place the media picks up on it and then the next thing you know it is so crowded the town has to put in a stop light down at the corner. When we moved into our little town here, the water company was a Sparkletts Jug sitting up on a hill, now we got real cops and everything.

The only good thing about a lot of cars and more traffic is, you get a little bit better grade of road kill, I better quit talking about it, I'm gettin' hungry for some Moose soup.

Like I said when we started this page Ray Reed is really opinionated when it comes to WESTERN music because if it ain't Western, he don't want to hear it and I sure don't blame him. Country music has gone so far in the other direction you can't hardly understand it and some people wouldn't know a good Western song even if they did hear it but time goes on and things change I reckon, and for sure, not always for the better.

Ray being an expert on the early frontier songs that he learned from his grandfather, his dad and an old camp cook that he has no trouble in lining up the finest talent in the country including the famous Texas Playboys.

Some of the legends that are a big part of musical history that call Ray Reed friend include, Tommy Allsup, Johnny Gimbel, Curly Lewis, Pee Wee Lynn, Leon Rausch, Frankie McWhorter, Eldon Shamblin and the list has no end.

Ray could have stayed in Hollywood, he could have been making movies and he could have been recording songs that someone else wanted him to sing, and if he had chosen to go that direction he would have had to sing the songs the way the producer wanted him to and that was not what Ray had in mind. Maybe you know and maybe you don't know, but the way music was recorded back when, if you made one mistake you started from scratch and did it again, if the guitar player goofed you did it again and so on down the line, now days of course if anyone goofs they just punch you in or the part where the mistake was made, but in the early days that wasn't so and no one can sing the same song twenty or thirty times in a row with the same feeling he had on take number one.

Chances are if they would have built a campfire in the middle of a pasture, let Ray and his pickin' buddies sing the songs with the feeling they were meant to be sung while listening to some wood cracklin' from the fire and a few microphones disguised as pork chops, Ray might still be recording. Hearing a song means nothing if you don't feel it, how many good songs have been recorded by dozens of artists, the same song the same words but only one or two of them can really turn that song inside out and make you feel it.

We will be doing some more good stuff on Ray Reed in another publication we write for because Ray is really something to write about, but since Ray has made sure we received some good publications and write ups from Ruidoso, we need to tell you about them.

MUSEUM OF THE HORSE is of course in RUIDOSO, NEW MEXICO and they sent me some great material (thanks to Candice) about the Museum, and we can not do what they have sent justice by just going through and taking bits and pieces from all of it, but this is truly a great place to visit if you have any kind of love for horses or the Great Old West, so what we are going to do is give you the address and the phone number of the Museum so you can either send them a card or letter or you can phone them asking for some material about the Museum Of The Horse, If you have a family then this place is something you sure will want to take your children to.

Now I know it is not long 'till Christmas and you may not be thinking about a vacation right now but for 32 cents and a sheet of paper or even a postcard Please write or call them about this great place to visit......So here it is, get out your pen or print this sheet out and frame it 'till your ready to take a trip> MUSEUM OF THE HORSE P.O.Box 40* Hwy 70 East* Ruidoso Downs, New Mexico 88346* or phone 505-378-4142 if you get home to late to call then you might want to just send them a fax and that number is 505-378-4166.

Now>If you want to know something about RUIDOSO or the surrounding area here are some super publications and if you wrote them I think they might send you a sample copy, first is *RUIDOSO Lifestyle P.O. Box 2215 - Ruidoso, NM 88345 second is GATEWAY, which covers New Mexico, El Paso and Mexico you can write them at GATEWAY, 425 W Griggs Avenue* Las Cruces, NM 88005 (OR) you can always write to the RUIDOSO chamber of commerce and they would probably send you some free literature and some maps if you are interested.

I mentioned that they just had Cindy Walker days in Ruidoso N.M in our last Web page. If you find a good country music station on your radio like the one Larry Scott is at in Oklahoma + you're gonna' find everyday is Cindy Walker days.

Shortly we will we doing a promotional mail out about our web-site and cover not only America but just about every foreign country. Now even though you know that I promote America first and foremost, The fact can not be overlooked that radio stations in other countries promote and play Classic Country Music the way we used to. A few weeks ago I received a music chart from Sweden and the number one song on that chart was a Harlan Howard song , now there ain't much unusual about that EXCEPT Harlan Howard was singing it and it was recorded some twenty years ago or longer, another one that was on that same chart and has been for months on end is a Waylon Jennings' song from his first or second album called "Anita Your Dreamin' ".

A few pages ago we mentioned if there is a Classic Country Radio Station in your area, send us or Email or fax us or something, the address and we will put it on our web page, many of the great Classic artist still record, some on their own label others on independent labels, This is not the 50's and no one is going to service 2800 radio stations with the cost of postage being what it is in hopes of finding a station that will play a Hank Thompson C.D. or any other Classic artist. Also some outstanding Western artists have some great music and you know well that today's country stations are not going to play it, so if you are reading this and there is a Classic Station in your area let us know or give them our address and we will make sure the Artist gets it.

An old lady about 90 and her good ole husband about 95 checked into a hotel while on vacation, the only room the hotel had left was on the 61st. floor. The little old lady said she was going out to do some shopping and would be back in a few hours. The old man smiled to himself and after she had left called an escort service to send him up a woman > The old lady got back sooner than expected and caught the old man, she grabbed him by the back side, raised the window and threw him out. Shortly after the cops got there and said "Lady why did you throw your husband out the window, you are 61 floors up?". The old lady said "Well honey, I figured at his age if he could make whoopie, he could fly".

Here is a good little California Publication for ye' it is called the OAK TREE EXPRESS and the address is P.O. Box 221286++Newhall, Ca. 91322:::This last edition had a great actor on the cover and a great story about him, and him is George Montgomery> They will send you a free sample if'n you tell them we sent ye.

When in California, visit the Gene Autry Museum in LA and the Roy Rogers & Dale Evans Museum in Victorville just a real nice drive, about an hour or so from Gene's place.

You are more than welcome to write us from any country in the world but please do your best to write it in a little bit of English if you can, we received a letter from Tanzania a while back and we had a Puerto Rican guy translate it for us, we sent the guy a pair of shorts and a McDonald Burger, later when he had some one else write us for him we found out he wanted a tape by a short guy named Little Jimmy and a Porter Wagonor C.D.

We sent a Merle Haggard album (C.D.) to a DJ in Russia that had requested it, a couple months later we wrote him and ask him if his listeners could understand English, he said no but they really liked Hag and his song of "EEGOKSUM MORF EIKO" It took me three months to figure out he was playing Okie From Muskogee backwards.

Just in case you lost it: our address is Box 2144, Winnetka, California 91396 and our fax number is 805-522-6058 and our email is down under.





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