Saturday, January 1, 2011

Ricky Nelson May 8. 1940- Dec 31, 1985

I will take a break from Constable tonight to memorialize Ricky Nelson. Nelson was the son of a famous big band leader Ozzie Nelson. Ricky began his career in 1952, in his fathers radio show "Here Come The Nelsons" That evolved into Ozzie and Harriet, a TV show I never saw ( I grew up, and still live without TV)

Ricky Nelson used the TV exposure to build a career as a musician. He had 19 top ten hits and placed 53 songs in the top 100. He played with first rate musicians and was the real thing himself. Nelson spent his whole life trying to overcome his image as a lightweight child star musician.

Ricky Nelson probably made the first music video by editing together cuts from his television appearances.

After numerous failed marriages and drug addictions he toured extensively playing his hits in state fairs and secondary venues, but always wrote and played new music too. He scored a great comeback hit with "Garden Party" in 1972 documenting a failed gig at the Madison square Garden, his last top 40 hit.

Twenty six years ago tonight, Ricky Nelson and his band boarded his 1944 DC3 in Guntersville, Alabama bound for Dallas. At 5:14 the plane crashed in DeKalb, Texas killing most of the passengers including Nelson and his fiance Helen Blair.

The pilots attempted to land in a field after smoke filled the cabin. The pilot indicated that the crew tried to turn on the gasoline cabin heater repeatedly shortly before the fire occurred, but that it failed to respond.

Happy New Year to you all, and God Bless. Thank you all for reading my blog. I have met so many of you and it has been a great reward for my efforts here. I have had over 26,000 readers this month!


Philip Koch said...

Stape- thanks so much for your efforts with this blog. It's a staple of my morning ritual (sorry) to sit with my coffee and see what tales you'll be spinning that day. Congratulation on all those readers!

willek said...

Best blog ever,Stape. Most informative for artists, most fun for all. Great for anyone who likes to look at pictures, too. I am still nominating on the hues you used in the background hillside in your lady blue night painting. You really nailed it...inordinately.

willek said...

My phone!!!!! Please substitute ruminate for nominate and latest for lady, above.

David Westerfield said...

I did grow-up watching Ozzie and Harriet (in reruns). The Nelsons were like extended family. That was a sad New Year's eve.
Thanks for all your instructional and inspirational posts.

Pam Holnback said...

I watched the Ozzie and Harriet show faithfully, and of course knew, that when I grew up, I would marry Ricky!

billspaintingmn said...

Stape! Happy New Years to you! And everyone too!
Growing up without T.V. how did you
manage? Back then it was good, or at least entertaining. (Today I wouldn't watch it either!)
26,000 a month, you kind of have your own T.V. show!
If they ever give out oscars, you get my vote.
I hope you continue to do the trip,
we all need you to show us how much more there is out there.
I agree with Philip Koch, my morning ritual is coffee & Stape.(sometimes marmalade, but always black)
I hope I can meet you some day.

Claire Bull said...

Oh Stape, I agree with the others here... your wonderful blog is my morning ritual with my tea and a great way to start the day, keep up the great work! It is so informative and well done - Happy New Year to you and thank you for all of your efforts

billspaintingmn said...

Maybe if they handed out "OsCigars"
you would accept?

MCG said...

Happy New Year Stape, and fellow readers. In 2010, I became a better painter and acquired more knowledge, and this blog contributed to my growth. I try to tell as many painters I meet about this blog so they can also share in it's bounty. Introducing others to this blog is the best way I can think of to thank you Stape for your generosity. Live long and prosper.

Stapleton Kearns said...

Tomorrow another Constable tale!

Stapleton Kearns said...

Are you OK?

Stapleton Kearns said...

I see.

Stapleton Kearns said...

Catchy tunes he wrote. He also did a lot of Rockabilly.

Stapleton Kearns said...

You better check your diary from that area, he was married a number of times.

Stapleton Kearns said...

I will try to call you next time I am in the Minneapolis area. It does happen now and then.

Stapleton Kearns said...

Thank you. I think it is a lot of fun having people out there reading it. More is better.

Stapleton Kearns said...

That's pretty good.

Stapleton Kearns said...

Thanks, I like being useful.