WEDNESDAY, JUNE 6
I've always been a professional musician, from my first gig at the VFW in Pierre, South Dakota with 6 other 13 year old kids calling ourselves the Capital City Brass. We were covering Lonely Bull and Tijuana Taxi by Herb Alpert. Red Willow Band took South Dakota and the upper Midwest by storm in the 1970's, and I followed that with an 8 year gig with country super-picker Roy Clark. Highlights included a 2 week tour of the Soviet Union, a hundred plus appearances on Hee Haw, regular slots on the Grand Ole Opry, and an incredible opportunity to play on the Tonight Show with Johnny Carson.
Moving to Austin, TX in 1991 I landed a job at Fiesta Texas while it was a music park run by Opryland, and enjoyed a year and a half of crazy fun with singers and dancers running around my 7 piece country band.
A serendipitous phone call between my old buddy Wally Saukerson and Mike Crowley led me to a lunch with Jimmie Dale Gilmore and Mike Crowley, and I joined Jimmie's band for some of the most interesting years of my musical life. Jimmie's gig took me to Ireland and England, all over the US, and featured appearances on Late Night With Conan O'Brien, the Tonight Show with Jay Leno, my only performance at Carnegie Hall, and 3 sold out shows with Nanci Griffith at the Royal Albert Hall. My association with Jimmie also led me to a wonderful month-long tour of Europe with Mr. Butch Hancock.