July-August, 2001

August 31st--Edgewood Bowl--Neosho, Missouri--In the second year of this annual party for the league members of the Edgewood Bowl, Oreo Blue was once again pleased to set up on Lane One and Rock the Alley (so to speak).  Great food (I love food) and great people surrounded what we all came here for in the first place...THE REMATCH!!!  Last year, during their only break, the band was invited to bowl a friendly game of the ole 10-frames.  Although the Professional Bowlers Tour never recorded a blip on their radar screen after that game, yours truly....Stephen....walked away victorious in some really hip shoes.  This year, the boys could just taste the hardware.  They had been thinking about nothing else but dethroning the King of the Pins.  I held no fear.  I was confident in my defense.  Bring on the melody-makers.  Set 'em up and knock 'em down, baby.  And what did the King do in the first frame???  Strike, baby.  Strike.  It was all over from there.  Successful defense of the title....and....still....Champion.  Better keep your day jobs, boys, 'cause next year will be more of the same.  Another $10 in my pocket.  I just may break 200...and what will you do then??? 

Daddy G and Macy G


August 17-18th--George's Majestic Lounge--Fayetteville, Arkansas--Nearly all of the accolades have been dished out about the Oreo Blue "home base" at George's, so some updates might be appropriate.  I must say that the club is looking fantastic since Ben Harrison has taken the club back under management.  With the help of Brian Crowne and others, George's hasn't looked this nice in my 15 years being around it.  And the boys are just getting started!  As for the shows this weekend, there were some fine moments from the stage by all.  The folks that opted for the competition across the street and across the parking lot missed out on wonderful Beer Garden weather and great sounds from the stage.  Oreo Blue was treated once again by the soulful sounds of the Mighty Blues Muse, the Inimitable Chris Payton.   She took us on a ride through some classic sounds of Stevie Wonder (I really love that groove on Superstition), Some Kind of Wonderful, and some Oreo Blue "oldies" that challenged even the boys who wrote the songs.  Always a great time when Chris hits the stage.  It was also a fun time when soundman, Dave, hit the stage to rock out on Jimi Hendrix's Hey Joe for an encore.  Way to hang in there, Dave!

photo by Gary Marks Photography


August 9th--Parsons Street Dance--Parsons, Kansas--The folks in Parsons are wonderful when we come to town and perform at the Kitchen Pass.  However, there are many folks who do not get to see the band due to the late hours.  At the street dance, people from all walks come around for the show.  We had a bit of a scare when the clouds came-a-boiling from the Southwest.  Fortunately, we dodged the rain and went on without a hitch.  Highlights from the show included, among others, a really hip bass solo from Rockin' Rod on Flip, Flop, Fly and a super-charged rendition of Messin' with the Kid that blew right over the audience like an old-fashioned Kansas twister.  A special extra credit highlight goes out to Sound Doctor, Brian Crowne, for dialing up what must be the highest quality outdoor sound show the folks in Parsons have ever heard.  Always a challenge, getting a quality sound outdoors is a rarity.  The Doctor gave each member of the audience the sensation of wearing high-quality headphones in the comfort of their own living room.   

Special Insert--I'ts a GIRL!!!  Macy Gail Hutchison.  5lbs-15oz fighting weight.  Word has it that she has beautiful dark hair and eyebrows (duh), beautiful eyes, and guitar-player fingers (perfect by all accounts).  Great job, Camy and Gary!!!  (pictures coming soon.)

Proud Parents

August 8th--Photo below of Stephen with Smoky Dacus.  Smoky is noted as being the first EVER drummer in Country Music.  Hired by Bob Wills and the Texas Playboys in 1935.  It was Smoky's 90th birthday as he was joined by the only two other surviving members of the Original Texas Playboys, Gene Gassaway and Leon Rausch.

August 3-4th--Maxine's Tap Room--Fayetteville, AR--Friday night was the most incredible performance in the history of music, the greatest guitar solos, completely righteous bass work, unbelievably funky horn parts, and the deepest pocket drumming known to man.  Stuff across the room caught on fire from the groove combustion.  The sheer energy of the music blew breakers for twenty blocks...

...if only there had been anybody there to see it.  It all happened!  We promise.

For those of you who do not know, Gary and his lovely wife, Camy, are due to have a baby soon.  Well, let's just say the gates are open as of Saturday morning. Gary did the right thing by staying by Camy's side rather than tackle the insurmountable task of topping such a performance from the night before.  Lucious Spiller was kind enough to sit in with the band and did a fine job settling the masses into some fine and funky grooves.  As of this writing, still no word on the baby.  We know it is a girl (unless of course it turns out to be a boy, then somebody will be surprised), and I will post more details as they come available.  We do know this for a fact...she will not be a guitar player when she grows up because she is early.

Stay tuned, and best wishes Gary and Camy!!!


July 13-14th--Eureka Blues--Eureka Springs, AR--Back when we performed here during the Blues Festival, we had one of the most raucous crowds ever.  To be honest, we expected much less on a "regular" weekend.  Not so.  The crowd this weekend was surprisingly strong and as has been mentioned many times before in this newsletter, Oreo Blue kicks it up a few notches when the crowd cares.  They did...and we did.  I will have to admit that my ears were ringing all the way home on that long, windy, road in the Ozark hills.  (I think they are still ringing two days later!  Oh, wait a minute...they always ring like this!).  The only solace of having a few weeks off is to get some rest for those weary ears.  My band mates most likely concur.  None of us like time off...but our hearing screams for it on occasion.  Highlights for this show were...hmmm...let me guess...the One-and-Only Michelangelo of the Guitar, the Sultan of String  Breakage, The Colossus of  Clean Tones, The Phantom of the Fender, The Know-it-All of the Les Paul, The Gloat of the Sweep Notes, Guitar Demi-god....Gary Lee Hutchison!  (pretty big build-up, huh...).  Gary shined on Milagro and Keep Your Hands to Yourself among others.  Brian pulled out the funk on Shaky Ground once again and Flip, Flop, Fly flew right the * out the door it was swinging so hard.  Rod got extraordinarily polyrhythmic on his solo on FFF.  You a funky man, Rockin' Rod Dean!



July 6-7th--Fat Tuesday's--Little Rock, Arkansas--It had been over a year since Oreo Blue had performed in Little Rock and I must say that it was not only long overdue, but that it should not be this long for the next time.  First things first...let's talk about the food at Fat Tuesday's.  As you know, we have to plug the food if it rules, and if we say nothing about the food, it is just our way of only saying something if it is good...The food was terrific.  The dishes my bandmates enjoyed were Fried Shrimp, Gumbo, Grilled Chicken Salad, and the Combo platter.  However, it takes a real man to step up to the plate and devour the 16oz Ribeye.  It ruled...and the service was excellent.    On to the show...

The band enjoyed an extremely appreciative crowd made up primarily of long-standing Oreo Blue fans that had waited in anticipation for this show.  Fans came from Hot Springs, Benton, Conway, and Fayetteville for the show.  The shows were highlighted by high-energy sets and strong individual performances.  Gary wowed 'em with another bombastic display of guitar prowess and despite the warm room and lack of fresh air, Brian breathed new life into the crowd with climactic solos on All Along the Watchtower, and Shaky Ground among others.  The band was treated to the company of Brent who worked the door and added humorous quips throughout the trip.  Thanks, Brent, for lending a hand. (and your Mom is a Hottie...) SWEEEEET!!!!!!!! (Dude.)

The photo above of the band at the Riverfront Amphitheatre was sent in by Ray Hill, one of Gary's students at Sigler Music Center in Ft. Smith.  Thanks, Ray!!  Keep 'em coming!


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