Hello Friends –
I am very pleased to announce that I have signed a contract with Prairie Rose Records of Kansas for my 2003 CD. We will be recording in June for release in August. It will be all cowboy music, some originals and some classics. You will be seeing a lot of publicity about the new album from PR Records later in the year.
The Prairie Rose Record Label is the property of the Prairie Rose Chuckwagon Supper Company of Benton, Kansas. Thomas Etheredge is the CEO of the enterprise. Thomas is also the Executive Vice President of the Western Music Association. Through his efforts, the annual WMA Festival will held in Wichita this year on November 12-16. I hope you can be there at Century II and the Hyatt Regency for the greatest in Western entertainment and exhibits.
If you missed the note last time, the new book “Distinguished Oklahomans” includes yours truly with a photo and full page writeup. It is quite inspiring to read about so many fellow Oklahomans who have overcome tremendous odds to make noteworthy accomplishments in their chosen field of endeavor. The book can be ordered from Brace Books (580-765-5173).
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Martha and I were in Yell County, Arkansas (True Grit?) in January of this year for a wonderful time entertaining the Yell County Mounted Patrol at their annual awards banquet. Thanks for Phil and Jacque for the bunk.
For the third time, I was asked to be one of the judges for the National Cowboy Museum and Western Heritage Center’s Traditional Western Album and Song of the Year. This institution was formerly called the National Cowboy Hall of Fame in Oklahoma City. The winners will be announced at the annual “black tie” affair on April 12 in OKC.
Our thanks to the folks in Athens, Texas and Iredell, Texas for a wonderful time with them in February, celebrating Valentine’s Day. And thanks to Rob Phillips and all the folks we were with at the Flying E Chuckwagon Supper in Lawrence, Kansas in February. The Flying E Chuckwagon Supper is held in the historic Eldridge Hotel in downtown Lawrence each Wednesday night, with lots of great food and western entertainment. The Eldridge was first built during Civil War Days and was burned to the ground, by confederate sympathizers, the day it was completed. It was rebuilt and then burned down again by Quantrill’s Raiders. It has been rebuilt twice more and now stands as a classic structure with comfortable rooms and beautiful surroundings. I will be back there on May 28 with Gene McFall who portrays Will Rogers. We will do our “Will and the Balladeer” Show. And I will be with them again, solo, on August 20. Hope you can join us for one or both shows.
And thanks to Gary Lower and the men at the Putnam City Baptist Church for their hospitality. And we love Lincoln, Arkansas and the folks who hosted and attended their 2nd Annual Cowboy Festival in March. I’ll be back there again next year on Saturday, March 27.
I want to thank all of you who attended the Fund Raiser at the Gene Autry, Oklahoma Museum on March 28-29. It was a huge success in helping to finance the air-conditioning project for the Tumbleweed Hall. I know the exhibitors, entertainers and patrons of the Tumbleweed Café will be so grateful to have cool air for the annual Gene Autry Cowboy Film and Music Festival, always held the last weekend of September. This will be our 12th annual this year, with the great Red Steagall as the featured performer, plus scores of others.
Please review my latest schedule and try to attend those public events when you can. I want to especially draw your attention to the July 4 date at the Prairie Rose Chuckwagon Supper in Benton, Kansas. The Prairie Rose is a great place for families to enjoy the culture of the old west. The new Hopalong Cassidy Museum is under construction as are other attractions. Call my buddy Orin Friesen there at 316-778-2121 for reservations and be with us on July 4.
As mentioned before, I am now offering all my cassette tapes at the discounted price of $5 each at our shows or $7 each by mail, postage paid.
Thanks again for your support.
Adios and Keep Smiling!!
"The Oklahoma Balladeer"
P.O. Box 350
Ponca City, OK 74602
(580) 762-0965 (fax)