Thursday, April 30, 2015

Picture of Pernie...

I can't remember but one of the relatives wanted to see the picture of my mothers cousin Pernie. I scanned it tonight to share.
Standing with his head cut off is my Mother's brother Alec. Next to him is cousin Raymond. The child on the left is Rena, Raymond's sister. My mother is the child on the right. In the middle is Aunt Pernie. I want to guess that this photo dates to the early 1930s. Raymond and Rena are the children of my mother's older brother Clay. Pernie is the child of my mother's father's brother Elisha. 

My mother recalls riding into Memphis on Sunday mornings from Peckerwood Point in Tipton County Tennessee to sit by Pernie as she played piano at the Methodist Church. Sitting by the piano player made my mom feel big. 

If you recall some previous family history folks often thought my mother and Rena were sisters. They were cousins. You remember that Rena was killed in an explosion at the ammunition plant where she worked during WW2. Search her name and you will find the info on the blog. Pernie lived into the 1980s as best as my mother recalls. 


Wednesday, April 29, 2015

More Records...

I know what you are thinking. This is another post about a record catch of catfish. It's not. It's about record store day. I know it's past and I kind of missed it. In case you don't know record store day started in 2007, is held on the third Saturday of April and a lot of folks use that day to issue new releases and special pressings. That's great and good but I never buy new records. I buy used ones and on a recent Chicago visit these are the ones I found at Shuga's record store.

Shuga's had some pretty high priced used records. Some were ones I have in my collection. For the prices they asked I would expect them to be in excellent condition. The ones in my collection are not in good condition. They have been played a few times. Shuga's did have a pretty good selection of $1 and $2 bins. In the pile pictured there we picked up another polka record, a recording of Jewish favorites, a Tom Lehrer, a French flute record, more Latin Favorites, Big Joe Turner 1940- 1944 (80s release, pretty scratchy sound like vintage 40s for sure) and the prize "Taboo"  by Arthur Lymon. 

Arthur Lymon was a a vibraphone and marimba play born in 1932. At age 8 his father locked him in his room with early Lionel Hampton records. It worked. He learned to play well. His recording career spanned 1957-1980 and enjoyed a revival with the lounge music craze of the 90s. He had three gold records with this one I purchased for $2 selling two million copies. Lymon played gigs regularly in Hawaii, California and Chicago into the 1990s and passed away in 2002. Much of his music was recorded at the Kaiser Geodesic Dome, a aluminum structure in Waikiki. They were done live with no over dubs. The sonics of these records were so perfect when this music was reissued on cd it required no remastering.  Funny thing was when I brought this recorded to the counter for check out the record store dude had another copy tucked under the counter, saved for himself. 

Someone recently asked me, "how do I find good music?" I just told you. 

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

New Nurse in the Family...

Our niece Samantha graduated from University of Texas medical Branch Nursing School this past weekend. Me, Cathy and Mary went down to Galveston for her pinning. It's always special for the nurses to attend a pinning and this was the 125th class to be pinned at UTMB. Samantha will begin her nursing career working at Memorial Herman in Houston. 

The class. 

Three nurses. Cathy has two aunts and a grandmother that were nurses. 

An after pinning lunch was held at Gaido's the famous old Galveston restaurant. Proud parents Jim and Sandy pose with Samantha and boyfriend Mitchell under the big crab. Lunch was great. I had the grilled combo.of fresh shrimp, scallops and fish. 

Congratulations Sam!  

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Happy One Year Anniversary...

Morgan and Ali. 

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Somebody Said it was Earth Day...

I think it should be called Catfish day from now on. Yesterday me, Cathy, Beverly and Donnie caught 95 catfish. We fished 10' of water using slip corks and punch bait. We fished from about 2:30 till 6:30 pm. I guess we should have fished a bit more and made a 4 person limit which would have been 100 fish but the bite had slowed down (duh) to only a fish every 5 minutes or so and we were getting bored. 

 If you are wondering it took about 2 hours, maybe a little more to clean them. There were 24 pounds of fillets and it took two good size men to lift the trash can of heads and tails that were left over after cleaning. 

We have another pair of, for want of a better word, fishermen who seem to be grudgedly tolerating our presents in this are. They dive and catch fish all around us.   

All channel cats today. Here's Beverly with a nice one. 

Cathy hold up a fish. 

I tried to get a photo of Beverly and Donnie landing a double. Both fish made it to the boat but not in the photo. 

Here is a double that made the photo. There were so many double, triple, quadruple hook ups you could not count them.  

Back at the boat ramp Beverly can't believe that the live well is full. Does anyone know of an after market live well option? 

Everyone wants their photo with the fish. I even got proof that I was along for the trip. 

All these fish were caught in the spot we call "the place." From reviewing old blog posts I think we discovered this area in 2009. Generally we catch 20-40 fish here with weather, wind and water depth all having to arrange themselves in a special confluence to attract the fish to this spot. The past three fishing trips have harvested 141 fish by casting into an area about the size of a comfortable living room. 

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Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Things That Happened on 4/20...

It was a big day. I heard something about Willie Nelson disappearing in a cloud of smoke or crawling out from under a rock and seeing his shadow or something like that. You know how the internet is. You hear all kinds of things. I know on thing for sure that happened on 4/20/1952 is that my parents got married. 
 Looking pretty serious here. I still have the little table that the Easter lily sits on in my living room. 

Some one says "ok, let's get one smiling. That Wallace guy can't be all bad." 

The wedding party. Left to right my dad's brother Don and Edwina, Alouise and oldest brother Leonard and my mom's niece Betty Sue and Buddy Bush. 

Pretty serious business. 

They eat cake. The next day they set out for a honey moon in San Antone and arrived in the middle of a Texas Independence Day Celebration. 

My dad passed away in 1991. Lately mom my has had a few set backs with a case of mild pneumonia and now the latest thing the past couple of weeks is an eye infection following a shot to treat her macular degeneration. With her vision fading she won't see these old photos I have posted. When I post pictures of myself doing embarrassing things she is going to be relying more and more on all my dear readers to call her up and give her the blog report.  

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Ok How Bout Some Blues...

I write about music a lot. Most of the time I am seeking out new stuff but lately I have had the chance to catch a couple of blues bands and it reminds me of the days when I listen to blues all the time. Did I same all the time? 

As I study about I have seen a good many of the greats. Right off hand I can list B.B. King, Albert King, Earl King, Koko Taylor, Son Seals, Bobby Blue Bland, Buddy Guy, Jr, Wells, Gatemouth Brown, Bo Diddley, Sonny Terry and Brownie Mcgee as well as a host of other more modern folks and then has always been plenty of unknown guys tearing it up and going to the well in small unknown clubs across the land. Lately I have been able to catch Little Freddie King and Lil Ed and the Blues Imperials.

Little Freddie King is the cousin of Texas Blues great Lighting Hopkins but he gets his name form playing like another Texas Blues great Freddie King. Little Freddie made his first record in 1969 and his second in 1996. He has played the New Orleans Jazz Fest for 42 years. We saw him at the Hogs for the Cause BBQ Fest in New Orleans. 
Rocking combo, guitar, harp, bass, drums. 

Would I look good in blue? 

I like his little mojo charm, a skeleton man hanging from the mike stand. Everybody needs one of these. I tried it one time myself. I use the horns of a long horn cow and hung them from my amp. The drummer in the band got careless and sat on them and then they would not let me bring my horns anymore to the gigs. 

Sharp dressed man. 

New up is Lil Ed. Ed is the Nephew of Blues great J. B. Hutto. I just missed seeing JB once when he played the old Crossroads club in Nacogdoches. He passed away shortly after that gig in 1983. J. B. was a slide guitarist in the old Elmore James style and Ed is not far removed from this.  We saw Ed at Rosa's lounge which is in Katie and Peter's neighborhood. It's an old famous place. It was Ed's 60th birthday and I got a piece of his cake. He had a bit of trouble out of a woman at the show and he asked Peter to handle that. Peter did exactly the right thing. He did not get involved. 
Ed's material is quite topical and comical. 

Good band, they just returned from a tour of France. 

Best and coolest bass player I have seen lately. 

Happy Birthday Ed. Hope the thing with the woman worked out. 


Friday, April 17, 2015

Cigar Box Guitar Build #45...

Here's another Acid cigar box build. It's the third on I have made from this brand of boxes. I have also made a couple of electric hand drums from these boxes as well so the are strong boxes and hold up well to strumming and beating. 
It's a small box so not a tremendously loud guitar but plays well with a clean sound that some seem to like. You know I like them old dirty tin box sounds so keep that in mind.  It has a single piezo pickup that accurately reproduces the acoustic sound clean and clear when used with an amp. 

Fresh from the shop. My great photo shows sawdust on the head stock. Some charge extra for this. 

Some construction marks at the neck joint. It's made by a real person who would rather be jamming than having a pretty guitar hanging on the wall. By the way, what's the name of your band? 

Action is high but it's meant to be played with a slide so so what. This guitar for sale. I'll take $75. 


Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Observations of Spring Nation Wide...

Regular readers may note we have had a couple of trips lately. One went south and not in a bad way and the other went north. It's after dark as I write this or I would make a picture of my yard to cover the in between. 

This photo was taken in New Orleans on or about March 26th. It was a bit of a rainy day. Spring springs early in New Orleans, ahead of us here in east Texas so we got a blooming preview of azaleas that were putting on their colors. I was trying for some effect in this photo and I kind of got it but did not get a second try as my camera battery died.  This a small garden area between busy Decatur Street and the bustling French Market area. I capture a few spring blooms, rain slick paving and may be a bit of old south feel and no people even though people are all around. 

Skip up a couple of weeks and we are in Chicago. According to everyone we talked to it's the first good weekend in a long time. The day we arrived was rainy and humid, not too different from the day we left in Texas but it cooled and cleared into sunny spring overnight and it seemed like all we talked to had spring fever. Only thing was the trees and flowers were not getting the message. This photo was made April 10th on Katie and Peter's street and there are no blooms, no buds, no green on the trees. There is a bit of green grass by the sidewalk but that is what has been fertilized by city animals leading their humans around by leash on snowy evenings the past few chilling months. 

I would make a photo of my yard. It's pretty green. It's very wet. It might take rubber boots, a machete, a weed eater, a boat or something else to capture the feel, the look of the East Texas spring. It's after dark and while I could have waited to write this and made a picture tomorrow things might change and the seasons move on. Better we did it like this, now. 


Tuesday, April 14, 2015

It Rains but Fish Bite...

On a morning outing with me, Cathy, Cousin Beverly and an old family friend Jim we landed 22 catfish and Beverly caught two bass. Very nice day at the lake before we were chased off by rain showers. I think pound wise we had more fish with the size running a bit bigger.
This is evidence of what good a good fishing spot we have a pair of ospreys were busy building a nest. In addition to bringing in nesting materials they ate at least three pounds of fish that I saw them catch and bring back to the nest. I should have taken more and betetr pictures because they were not shy and as the wind swing us around we had better positioning. 

Jim, Beverly and Cathy. 

Action shot showing bent poles. That's the bait in the foreground bucket, not their lunch. 

Jim is a contemporary of mine and Beverly's dads and in the good old days did some hunting and fishing with them. He is one of the few guests on our boat who have held their own on these fishing trips. The catfish bite can be light, heavy or require exact casting skills as when we are slip corking like we did today and  sometimes those things are beyond the occasional bait soakers skills.  

Very nice fish today with two blue cats about this size. 

What's those green fish? That's a couple of keeper sized Kentucky Spotted largemouth bass that Beverly caught. 

Of course we have the tub shot. Nice fish and wet but happy fishers. 


Monday, April 13, 2015

To Everyone Who Thought We Was In Louisiana...

We was in Chicago. It was Katie and Peter's "what seems to have become an annual" crawfish boil. It just looked like Louisiana for a day in the big windy city.  
I remember the good old days when crawfish were not just real readily available close to my home. Getting some live ones involved a drive over to Mauriceville which was then known and may still be as the crawfish capital of Texas. Live crawfish were 75 cents a pound and it was about a 3-4 hour round trip. These Chicago crawfish were shipped in from Natchitoches, La. They left at about 2pm Friday and arrived in Chicago at 11am Saturday. They were alive, kicking, very clean and delicious. Form the looks of the courtyard at Katie and Peter's home we could be in the French Quarter somewhere. 

Even though countries of origins of the party goers ranged from New Zealand, Canada, Poland and Georgia, locations that don't have a crawfish culture no one seemed to need much explanation how to eat crawfish. I mean eating other critters is how we live. Cathy did introduce the group to crawfish racing. Making other things do our bidding for amusement is how we roll.  

Cathy marks the racers. 

Go Boudreaoux! Go Tibidoux! Go Amos, Go Evangeline!

Ouch! Crawfish racing injury

Good and spicy boil. 

See all ya'll next year. 

"...I know I've seen that face before," Big Jim was thinking to himself "Maybe down in Mexico or a picture up on somebody's shelf..."Bob Dylan from "Lilly Rosemary and the Jack of Hearts
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