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Two Arkansas Shows...A Song Mash...Cincinnati Today

Apr 1 | Posted by: Bill Whyte |

April Fool’s Day…fair warning y’all.  Eyes open for whoopee cushions!



I’m certainly glad I have zero important  to dotoday as it will give me time to re-charge after a great road trip to Arkansas this weekend for two great house concerts that “Hits & Grins” was booked for.  It turned out to be a “Hits & Grins” duo instead of a trio as our sister in music Victoria Venier was down with an awful flu strain causing her to miss this great trip…and I know she’s sick about that too as she NEVER misses a show.  Get better Vic!


So it was me and Steve Dean and Steve's wife Lori on I-40 West bound Friday for the trip to Little Rock where we overnighted at Steve’s Dad’s house.  My thanks once again to Mr. Dean for taking such great care of me and Steve.  Always a pleasure to visit with him.



Friday saw the two of us back on I-40 West making the trip over to Fort Smith for a house concert that Gary and Lana Hunt put on in their BEAUTIFUL home with massive windows that overlooked a beautiful valley.  Think Frank Lloyd Wright type of home…just very very cool.  About 50 of their guest sat in front of us as we sat in front of those windows and played our songs and told our stories.  And folks were most surely into the songs Friday night. 


Gary & Lana were touring Nashville a couple of years ago and saw our trio play at the Listening Room.  They decided they had to have us come play at their house…the 4th house concert they’ve thrown.  We’re surely glad they did that. 


Lana’s Dad at one point had a short run as a Major League baseball player for the Chicago Cubs and showed us his official picture as a Cub in uniform.  So we had a immediate bond because…well…you know how much of a baseball fan I am.


We just could not have had a better time and we thank Gary and Lana for their hospitality.  We’ll be back again one day I’m sure…with Victoria in tow this time.


And then after the show we had a three-hour drive back to Little Rock where our heads finally hit pillows at about 2 in the morning. 



Then Saturday night Steve and I played a house concert out in the country near Greenbrier, Arkansas at the home of Jim and Suzy Pollock.  Jim helps head up a local songwriters group “Songriders Live” and they’ve had our “Hits & Grins” trio in multiple times.  Normally we play these shows at an Irish Pub in Little Rock called Khalil’s.  But the room we’ve been playing in there was turned into a pool hall. (that’s the kind of effect we have when we play…we turned the dang place into a pool hall!)


So this time Steve and I played a duo show in their living room.  There was food, guests, music, a great opening act and we had a terrific evening.  Some of Steve’s family and friends we’ve made through the years were all cozied up in the living room as well as folks we did not know that we enjoyed getting to know.


Our thanks to Jim and Suzy and their wonderful family for hosting us once again.



Our trip home I-40 East to Nashville yesterday (Sunday) took us forever.  And that’s because when we got to about and hour and a half from home the interstate became a parking lot because of an accident.  Sigh.  We sat, crept a little, sat some more.  Finally we took Mr. Waze’s advice and took a curvy scenic detour out in the country.  And just about the time we get ready to get back on I-40 after over an hour, a frantic woman is waving us down just off the road.


It’s a Mom…and three kids in the back of her little car that’s also packed to the rafters with other stuff as they were trying to get to Raleigh, North Carolina and ran out of gas because of the delay and detour.  She was frantic.  So we told her just to stay there…and literally no more than a quarter mile away around the curve sat a gas station.  We bought a little red container…put a couple gallons worth of petro in it and circled back to her and got her and her kids off and going again.  As Steve’s wife Lori said, “that’s why we were detoured”. 


So a great trip, a long trip home, and a blessing to be able to help some folks that needed it.



So hit writer Wood Newton who’s from Arkansas (and wrote "Bobby Sue and "Riding With Private Malone") recently played this same house concert Steve and I just played in Greenbrier.  The same videographer named Larry Wilson was there for both of our concerts and recorded Wood singing a song we wrote together “My Wife’s Gonna Leave You”.  At the request of our concert host I also sang the song Saturday night.  Now…watch THIS.  Larry did a “mosh” of our two performances together in one video.  Funny.  Thank you Larry!



My friend Steve Dean did confirm with me that he wants me to be part of a group of six or seven other Nashville writers to come back to Little Rock the weekend of April 26 & 27 to write a song with a military veteran for the group Operation Song.  I am so looking forward to this experience.


The event will be held at the McCarthur Museum of Military History (as in Douglas McCarthur who’s native to Little Rock). I can’t wait to tour that museum.  Friday night there will be a meet and greet with several veterans that the local VA have selected to have this experience.  The Nashville writers will get up and sing a few songs and get to know some of the folks who have served our country.  Then on Saturday a vet will pair off with each songwriter and we’ll sit down to talk about their experience in the military.  A lot were in the thick of battles and many suffer from PTSD syndrome.  During the conversations we have about their very personal stories…we’ll be looking for a song to write about that.  And then Saturday night we go on stage with our assigned veteran and talk about them…and then sing THEIR song we wrote together earlier in the day. 


At a later date these songs will all be recorded in Nashville and put on an Operation Song album. 


I’m extremely honored to be part of this wonderful effort.  I’m sure it will be both very emotional and rewarding all at the same time.



Ever think to yourself that the TV show on NBC “Law and Order” is on ALL the dang time?  Turns out that’s kinda true.  NBC just renewed the show for another season making it the longest running prime time “live” action series ever.  21 years and running…and running…and running.



Telemedicine is slowing growing as a thing.  You get your doctor on your computer to figure out what’s wrong with you.  Lindsey Mcilvena is a 35 year old doctor in California who now has a license to practice online in well over 20 states.  I can’t even imagine taking that many tests to get accredited.


So pretty soon I’ll have a Doc App on my smart phone right next to my Facebook App…I guess.



I’m trying to do just that.  Nothing easy about it.  Especially when you’re on the road as much as I am.  I did read this interesting ARTICLE though about 6 anti-inflammatory foods you can eat all the time and lose weight.  4 of the six I eat. Spinach and cucumbers?  Uh…not so much.  But check out the list and see how many you have on your diet.


I was deeply disappointed to see that Krispy Kreme donuts did not make this list.



Ladies…are you going to wear a “jantie”?  That’s a blue jean pantie that fashionista’s think will catch on.  Take a LOOK.  A denim diaper basically.  And…you get to spend $315 to wear one.  Shoot me.



“Woman Scares Off Wild Moose By Throwing A Cat At It”.  Bet she had more than one to choose from.



Actually back on the road with my wife for an up and back trip to Cincinnati on a little business trip.  But we’ll see some of her side of the family and tonight I’m going to catch some Skyline Chili and Reds baseball game at Great American Ballpark.  I packed a heavy coat as it’s going to be cold this evening on the Ohio riverfront for the matchup against the Brewers.  Play ball!


Have a great Monday.









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