I started playing drums at age 13 for Charlie O'Bannon and The Western Twilighters at Patterson's Night Club in Mineral Wells, TX. From there I worked with Kenneth Doyle and Johnny Shreve at the Trio Club in Mingus, TX, Jimmy Don Pack and several other local artists in the early 80's. I landed some jobs with Gary Carpenter (the alpha steel guitar player in the Dallas/Ft.Worth Metroplex) who introduced me to what I call “super pickers.” These guys include Ricky (Beaver) Soloman, Richard E. O'Brien, Randy (Snuffy) Elmore and The Finest Western Swing Vocalist never to have made it big, Robert (Buck) Reams. Buck is still one of my heroes!
Everyone mentioned above were all working or had been working for Red Steagall and the Coleman County Cowboys. Buck, Beaver and Rich got me a job with Steagall. We traveled the states and a six week tour of South America. After a while I had to leave the Coleman County Cowboys due to illness (Red got sick of me...I think it was my mouth problem!).
So, back to the local scene I went. That's when I met Jim Snider, an ex-Coleman County Cowboy like myself who was now one of the Tennessee Volunteer's for Darrell Mcall.We had a large time working with Joker, Darrell's nick name, which was very fitting. Darrell's cousin was Bill Bowers who was playing bass for my all time hero and Texas Dance Hall Legend, Mr. Shuffle himself Johnny Bush. Bill called me one day and said "We need a drummer next weekend in Dallas at The Three Tear Drop Tavern, would you be interested?” What Bill didn't know was all those years of playing the local scene almost every band I worked with played several of John's tunes and at every practice session we would learn at least another of Bush's songs.
Without trying to sound giggly I said “you bet your sweet patootie I'll be there.” I pulled out every 8 track, cassette, 45 and LP and practiced all week every day and night and the day of the job I got there about 3 hours early just chompin' at the bit to play with the Texas Living Legend and it paid off. John hired me and this was the greatest time of my life and the most fun you could have on the road. It was everything and more I could have ever dreamed of. There I was a young man from Millsap TX sittin’ in a motel room after the shows listening to real life stories from The Man Himself who lived and breathed Country music.
Then I met the love of my life, Jennifer. We were blessed with two children, my son Jerry Don and my daughter Jennifer. I quit the road, tried to grow up, get a real job and be a weekend warrior (as John likes to refer to people who have to work weekdays). So back to the local scene I went and it was okay. I was happy working a couple times a month. Then one night down in the historic Ft. Worth stockyards, at an “establishment”, a young feller sat in and sang his tail off and scrubbed an ole guitar. He told me "I saw you playing drums for Johnny Bush, some day I want you to play for me." I told him keep working at it and give me a call. There is no telling how many times I had told someone the same thing, but this guy had "It". And sure enough he called. So I went to playing drums for Randy Brown and he is the one who pushed me to make this CD. There is more to the story but I don't know the age group I'm writing to......that's all folks!