22 March 2006

FARON FIFTY-TWO YEARS AGO: In March 1954, PFC Faron Young and the Circle ‘A’ Wranglers went to New York City for the annual “Army Talent Patrol” contest. Faron had won the previous year, after which he transferred to Third Army Special Services and acquired his band. The Wranglers performed on the show. Fiddler Gordon Terry competed, and he won the contest. Arlene Francis, best known for her 25 years as a panelist on the television game show “What’s My Line,” emceed the show (later called “Soldier Parade”) from 1953 through 1955.

Linda S. Kyle in Denver, Colorado, writes, “My dad, Ray Emmett, has been forwarding these emails periodically to me, since I’d had the privilege of meeting and getting to know Faron through him, and have so many fond memories of Faron as well (as do my twin girls, who met him for the first time when they were 3, I think, and they are 23 now). Anyway, to be sure to not miss any, I would love to be added to your email list.”

Richard Spooner says, “I read your mail every time and thank you so much. I met the great man in Ipswich, Suffolk, on his tour and we shared some time together back stage. We got to sing a little too, a very proud moment for me. I am still working here in the UK singing Faron’s songs….they are great songs written and performed by a great great singer, a true bar room singer. I too would love to see footage of the great man. Does anyone have any?”

Charlotte Sutton sends an update on her husband: “Just a short note to let every one know Leon is doing fairly well as far as his heart surgery; his arthritis is bothering him REALLY bad. He has problems with his wrists, hands, shoulders, knees and feet. I have to bathe him, put him to bed and do all those things that he likes to do for himself and that bothers him real bad. He gets depressed a lot and I know it must be hard on him since he can not play any more. He has to pick up his coffee cup with two hands and it hurts so bad some times I think he would rather not even try. We do thank everyone for your concern and please continue to keep him in your prayers. If any one would like to give him a call, that would make him very happy I am sure. Love to all and Thanks to Diane for all your hard work and concern about all these Deputies.”

Comment: Charlotte provided a phone number, which I will give to anyone who wants to call Wahoo.

Ray Richardson in Roanoke, Virginia, unexpectedly put me in touch with a songwriter I wanted to find. He says, “My wife…had several songs published by Central Songs. She sent them a song that she had written called ‘Saving My Tears.’ Cliffie Stone’s wife wrote and told her that a new artist named Faron Young was interested in recording it, but he didn’t care for the music she had written and would like to write another tune to it. My wife (then Virginia Midgett) agreed, so Faron recorded it. When she received a copy of the record, the first thing she noticed was that Faron placed her name first as writer before his own. Now this doesn’t sound like much, but I think this tells a lot about his heart and desire to help others…. I wish you all the best in your effort on the book. I am looking forward to reading it when it comes out.”

Comment: Faron recorded the song in May 1952, during his second Capitol session.

Max Mayes of Fort Myers, Florida, writes, “Please be assured you can add me to your list of waitees for your book. Wish you all the luck in the world. There was only one Faron. No one compared to his versatility. He was and still is one of my greatest heroes in the music industry. Sure do miss the man.”

Faron Cordrey, a Navy acquaintance of mine, writes from Japan, “I really enjoy your newsletters, appreciate you adding me to your mailing list. Looking forward to your book release.”

WEB SITE: The Pure Country Music web site at http://www.purecountrymusic.com/ has a selection of Faron’s recordings and TV appearances. There’s also a discussion group in the “Information” section.

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