The other day, Darlene, who loves to talk, stopped me and told me about her second husband Elmer Gene Burton. He was a musician from Idaho who now lives in northern Utah.
He’d written a couple of songs for her. One “Dreaming a Dream of about You”.
They divorced but are friendly toward one another.
Gene is a Saxophone player of note, who once had two of his fancy instruments stolen but recovered them. I had to admit I’d never heard of Gene but I had heard of the bands he played with.
Horace Heidt, Harry James, Tommy Dorsey.
Horace Heidt (May 21, 1901–December 1, 1986) was an American pianist, big band leader, and radio and television personality. His band, Horace Heidt and His Musical Knights, toured vaudeville and performed on radio and television through the 1930s and 1940s.
Henry Haag “Harry” James (March 15, 1916 – July 5, 1983) was an actor and musician best known as a trumpeter who led a swing band during the Big Band Swing Era of the 1930s and 1940s. He was especially known among musicians for his astonishing technical proficiency as well as his superior tone.
Thomas Francis ”Tommy“ Dorsey, Jr. (November 19, 1905 – November 26, 1956) was an American jazz trombonist, trumpeter, composer, and bandleader of the Big Band era. He was known as “The Sentimental Gentleman of Swing”, due to his smooth-toned trombone playing. He was the younger brother of bandleader Jimmy Dorsey. After Dorsey broke with his brother in the mid-1930s, he led an extremely popular and highly successful band from the late 1930s into the 1950s.
(Thanks to Wikipedia for the historical info on these three band leaders.)
I was talking to two guys tonight at a barbeque.
One of them had heard one of my music cds and said I could carry a tune. We started talking about musicians we knew. That guy said he knew a man who’d had a hugh guitar collection stolen from him.
I told of my friend Oregon Willie (Arthur Phillips) and his prize guitar that was stolen when he rode a bus. What made the guitar so valuable was that he had signatures of many of the great country western and pop artists on it. I remember the Sons of the Pioneers had signed it.
Then I started to tell about him being from Minnesota and that he went to high school with …
I couldn’t remember the guy’s name and though the two I spoke to mentioned many rock and pop names, we never hit on the right guy.
So I went home and got on the net to do a search and quickly found Bob Dylan. I had to call the guys and tell them. I felt dumb.
It was harder finding Oregon Willie as there are several well know Arthur Phillips. But I finally found him in a book I remembered featured him. Musicians of Southern Utah is the book title. It is out of print but you can find it online and down load page 38 to see the short write up on Willie. (You’ll need to scroll down to page 38)
“Musicians of Southern Utah”
Compiled by Doug Liston with H.C. & Kay Hunt and Carol Liston
Oregon Willie-Arthur Phillips
From Hibbing, Minnesota, born May 26 1939.
Guitar from age eleven.
When a teenager, he knew and jammed with “Bobby” Zimmerman (Dylan) and had fun.
Took the name Oregon Willie Octber 1974.
“I have a great love of country music and many unforgettable memories.
My advise to newcomers is to follow your dream and don’t give up.”
If you want to know about my friend, follow the link above and ddownload it and read it.
I have audio recordings of his when he Jammed with me and others in St. Geroge.
A great guitar player who can make any guitar sound good.
We also made several VHS tape recording of him singing and playing.
If interested contact me. Call 435-628-7809 or write 85East Center, Ivins, Utah 84738.
I just spent an hour deleting as spam Almost 800 bogus comments generated by some spam software.
If you were real people I might even read your comment, go to your site, might even buy something from you.
But I won’t be your automated dump pile.
I just receive this email yesterday.
“ Saturday, June 30, 2012 2:28 PM
Abraham Lincoln, or rather, our own, local, Jay Beacham (Abe’s spectacular look- alike), will be opening our Literary Arts Program this year at the Washington County Fair.
‘Let FREEDOM Ring’ is the Fair theme this year and Jay, or rather, Abe, will be sharing stories to entertain us on Thursday afternoon at 4:00 p.m. to start off the Awards Program. He will also beentertaining at other events throughout the entire week of the Fair. You won’t want to miss him. Bring your children and grandchildren.
Come to the Washington County Fair, August 8th through 11th. Register your Poetry or Prose, Monday from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Be a part of the Literary Arts Poetry and Prose and Let Freedom Ring!
-Shelia Dutton Literary Arts Chair