July-August, 2007

 

August 17-18th--Hawgs Pizza--Hot Springs, AR--I have not eaten at that many pizza parlors in the Spa City, but I would hedge my bet that Hawgs Pizza is the best in town.  When we walk in the doors, the wait staff has iced down root beers waiting for us.  Generally regarded as the one venue where we will try just about any song requested, some of the patrons must have caught on or decided to request out of the box.  We didn't dive into the Lincoln Park request, but we did pull out a few surprises.  Gary and I went to see a movie on Saturday.  The "Chuck and Larry" flick.  Funny.  Then we ate at the Olive Garden and nearly made ourselves sick from over-eating.  Need to find some fans in the area with a boat that wouldn't mind letting us tag along some time.  Driving over the bridges and seeing all that inviting water makes it tough to sit in the hotel room....  Next up is Landry's CD Release Party... Let's see the river valley roll out!

 

August 10th--The ByPass--Joplin, MO--During the summer time, we play out on the back patio at the ByPass.  Sometimes it just gets blistering hot out there.  Tonight was no exception.  I like the setup out there, though, with the high balcony and the rooftop bar.  The woodwork stage is also nice for a little extra tone on things.  Gary's longtime friend, Lou Davidson, joined us this evening for dinner and up on stage for a few tunes.  Lou also snapped a few photos that I will eventually get into a photo page.  Below are a few teasers...  Tonight was also Gary's grandson's last night in town before heading back to California.  Jace had been helping us sell CDs for our release parties and Gary invited the aspiring young guitarist up on stage as well.  He was a bit hit with the ladies...

 

photos by Lou Davidson

 

August 9th--Gully Park Summer Concert Series (Finale)--Fayetteville, AR--Once again, we closed out the summer concert series at Gully Park.  It was pretty warm at the start.  As the air cooled when the sun went down, the atmosphere heated up as we rocked the reportedly largest crowd of the series.  An estimated 2,000 people lined the natural grassy amphitheater beyond the gazebo stage. 

 

August 8th--Home--So...the new CD is finally released.  I am working on the online form for ordering through CD Baby.  Should be up in about four more days.  In the mean time, you can pick up your copy at any Oreo Blue show, or just contact me and we can get you one in the mail if like.  We also have T-shirts for this project which, I think, are quite fashionable.  Here is a picture of the new design. 

 

August 5th--Edgewood Bowl Annual Battle of the Sexes--Neosho, MO--I have said this many times before that I am not a bowler.  Bowling and I just don't match.  But...this time around, Brian left before the bowling match so I stood a chance.  It wasn't going to happen.  Who knew, but Gary comes out of the gate in his unorthodox style and rolls a strike in the first frame.  Now...nobody is going to mistake the members of Oreo Blue for candidates for the PBA, but I think the final score was 121 to 114.  Gary takes the title in the 7th Annual Oreo Blue bowloff...  Of course, with Brian not participating, we still had a distraction in our lane in the form of a lovely young gal who was added to make a foursome.  The show portion was fun.  Brian joined us for the first set and we hacked our way through some of the oldies.  The crowd loved the solos that Brian was tearing up.   

 

August 4th--The Kitchen Pass--Parsons, KS--One would think that our favorite venues would be the big ones with the big crowds.  Not so.  I am not sure how to put my finger on it, but performing at the little Kitchen Pass is an absolute blast every time we play there.  Darwin put up a new stage and it was awesome.  Despite this being a "different" crowd than our "normal" crowd there, they eventually broke loose and started having a great time.  The food rocks and the crowds are always fun.  You should all visit tiny Parsons, KS, sometime and be a KP patron.  You won't regret it.

 

Guitar Legend, Johnny Winter @ George's Majestic Lounge

(photo by Craig Nelson)

August 3rd--George's Majestic Lounge featuring the legendary Johnny Winter--Fayetteville, AR--We used this date as our official CD Release Party (day 1).  We performed a set from 7pm to 9pm or so with Brian joining us again on stage and then let Johnny Winter take the stage from there.  Logged as a true guitar hero legend, Johnny Winter plowed through a set of "lock up yer women and children" blues.  The crowd for Johnny was not what it should have been, but it was certainly full of enough fans to supply a generous applause between songs.  When Johnny's set was over, we took the stage again for an after show set until close.  This was high-energy, full-on rock show stuff.  When the Johnny Winter show was over, the crowd filed back through the lounge stage area on their way out the door.  However, when Gary kicked into gear, not one of them ever made it to the exit.  They stopped and gawked.  After spending 90 minutes being serenaded by a guitar legend, they were bitch-slapped by Gary on their way out the door.  A crowd made up of junkie guitar fans, they just didn't know...  Jaws were agape and most of the guys' dates that were silly enough to escort their aspiring guitar-playing boyfriends to the Johnny Winter show were pleasantly surprised to get a piece of what Gary Lee was serving up.  The contrast in energy was fantastic and it showed on the faces...

 

July 28th--Rooster's--Fort Smith, AR--I am beginning to both like and hate these late night shows all in the same breath.  It is a late-night vampire type crowd when the show goes til 3am, but they are always fun.  We always seem to be having good shows there as well.  The "hate" part comes with getting home at 6am and then having to face Sunday activities on zero sleep.  I suppose as long as it is in moderation...  Nighflying founder and editor, Peter Read, dropped by on my invitation in hopes that we would have our new CD for him.  It wasn't the case, but it was good to see the original night owl out in the Fort. 

 

July 20-21st--Jimmy Buffett's Cheeseburger In Paradise--Kansas City, MO--We took to the road Friday evening to KC and were figuring to get to the venue in just enough time to get under way.  Somewhere along Hwy 71, a rogue rain cloud appeared and just dumped the heaviest of rains on the highway.  We weren't driving all that fast (as far as you know). Shortly after the rains hit, the car about 100 yards in front of us suddenly had hydroplaned.   We were instantly looking at his headlights.  He spun 360 one way and then the other for what seemed like an eternity then flew into the median and luckily for him, slammed into the guard rail on the opposite side thus avoiding the southbound traffic (and a semi truck).  Man....I white-knuckled the rest of the trip.  Well...once there, we threw the gear up and got under way.  We had a fun show Friday night and the crowd was great.  The stage is so very tiny, but it's plenty for us to rock that place.  We had a few PA problems with the house speakers, though.  Saturday, we did our rock star thing.  Um...well...ok...we went shopping at the local music stores.  We went to visit our great, old friend, Scot "Z" Zele who manages the Funky Monkey music store over on Shawnee Mission Pkwy (www.funkymonkeymusic.com ).  Z used to run sound for us at George's Majestic in Fayetteville and is a class fella all the way.  Z came out to Saturday night's show and stayed until load-out.  Not sure if Z has a life that being the case, but it was great seeing him again. Saturday's show was a little lighter attended, but it was a great time for us on stage.  We experimented with a few new songs put in that same day.  I think we'll keep 'em.   The staff at CIP is way cool and the food is tops in the genre.  So...hopefully, we will make a return sooner before later.    

 

July 14th--Ryan Gibson Foundation--Fayetteville, AR--Not that these are the sorts of shows that rock like a big concert.  However, this is a foundation event that we have performed at before and it is a very noble cause to fight Leukemia.  Derek Gibson wanted us to help the folks there have a great time and we think they certainly did.  We got them dancing fairly quick and they not only would not stop dancing, but we ended up playing well after our stop time.

Have a few pictures to upload from one of our friendly fan photographers and one article from the Neosho newspaper with Gary on the cover...

 

The Photos below were taken at OkieFest in Muskogee, OK, with the Nace Brothers. 

 

July 6th--Arkansas, Oklahoma, Texas, Blues Summit--George's Majestic Lounge--Fayetteville, AR--Oh, man... what a night for me.  This show was designed as a feature for four of the greatest guitarists you will hear anywhere in the USA.  Bugs Henderson, Steve Pryor, Earl Cate, and our own Gary Hutchison.  The night started off with a brief set of Oreo Blue with Brian Crowne re-joining the band on saxophone and a little vocal.  It was a strong, but quick set.  Then we dialed up the featured performers.  Initially, they were to come up one at a time, but once Earl Cate was called up, Bugs Henderson and Steve Pryor joined in right away.  From then on, it was another 4 hours non-stop of great music.  Rod took the rest of the night off and Steve Pryor's bassist, Clint, who is a staggeringly solid and grooving player held form for me all night long.  Leading me through dozens of songs that escaped my familiarity.  Steve Pryor led the charge most of the night calling songs and keeping the boys playing well with each other.  Usually, a four-lead-guitarist show can get annoyingly out of hand, but Pryor kept things clean.  Everyone had a chance to showcase their unique style.  My personal favorite of the night was Pryor's version of "Can't Find My Way Home" from the Blind Faith/Clapton book.  Just cooler than the other side of the pillow...  The worst part of the show was that it had to end.  Shutting down at 10pm when it just seems like things were just getting started.   It ran four hours, but it flew by.  Afterwards, I stuck around to hang out with Mountain of Venus.  A band with a very complex suite of original songs that is well-rehearsed and proficient.  It was just a great night of music.  Did I mention that we were treated to Bob Yazetti's "Should Be World-Famous" Pizza?

Gary Hutchison, Steve Pryor, Bugs Henderson, Earl Cate

(photo by Stephen Boudreaux)

Below are some photos snapped on my camera by Brian Crowne and John Magness

 

and a photo taken by Glenna Kay Eisert emailed to Georges...