Articles and thoughts from the mind of Deke
An extraordinary number of musicians have passed through the ranks of the Strangers. Here we attempt to list the players who actually toured with the band during the Capitol years as well as important session players.
It’s hard to know where to begin, from the micro-frets Calibrato vibrato to the hand-welded bridge, the many additions to the pickups, the fingerboard extension to allow bass strings hanging off the edge like a harp guitar, to the 1980s-era computer interface connector.
“WHAT DO YOU WANT IT TO SAY?” He would yell in his Polish accent over the din of the machines. “ECCO-FONIC HIGH FIDELITY ON THE LEFT HAND SIDE OF THE HOLE, 45 RPM AND EF-1004 ON THE RIGHT SIDE OF THE HOLE, LINES ABOVE AND BELOW EACH ONE!” I would yell.
Deke shows off his Sho-Bud “Compactra” amplifier and Rickenbacker Transonic amp.
Merle Haggard, for all his successes and hit records up to the fall of 1969, was just another country music star. One song changed all that: a simple little ditty called “Okie from Muskogee.”
Here’s a silly story for the guitar geeks.
Big Jerry Douthett was one of the funniest guys I’ve ever met…just a force of nature. Sometimes, when you were hanging out with him, you’d swear that you were hanging out with the reincarnation of John Candy.
Most of country music’s great artists are glorified one-trick ponies, making album after album of same-sounding material. The recorded output of Merle Haggard proves that this was never the case for him.
Bob Dylan turned 80 today. Happy Birthday, Bob! Here’s a list of my strange non-events featuring Bob Dylan, for your amusement and my own self-deprecation.
Bonnie Owens will forever go down in history as the woman who was married to both Buck Owens and Merle Haggard. But it is also true that as a solo performer she recorded an impressive body of work.