Saturday, February 27, 2010

I went to Decatur High School with MORGAN WEED.
I had heard that he was killed in The Nam....your story about him brought tears to these old eyes of mine.We were good friends in high school and MORGAN was a PRINCE among men.
Please keep up the good work Brother !
Love & Respect !

John D. Wyker aka
Worldwide NET RADIO 24/7

"Yes, but I'm not sure we could print those memories! LOL. Oh, I thought you meant the Goober! Well, back to the Skyvue...

Well, one of them is that we used to all pack in someone's car, preferably a stationwagon, lay down in the back, cover up with a blanket, so only the driver and passenger had to pay for tickets. Duh - wonder how many people did this and how much revenue the Skyvue lost because you know they knew everyone did this! LOL!!"

Hey y'all~
Spent the entire day going through the Pake Realty Archives & now I about to share just the tip of this cultural iceberg. It is my honor & privilege to live around and handle countless pieces of OUR history. What an honor & privilege!

One of the earliest artifacts I've ever seen that pertains to the education of Blacks in Tuscaloosa.Miss M.A.M. Kernan was from Locust Valley,Long Island, which is near Oyster Bay. She came to Alabama with the American Missionary Association which was started by Abolitionists. She was listed in the faculty of Talladega College in 1878

but here she is as the head of the Colored Normal School of Tuskaloosa, Alabama, writing to the President of Oberlin College in September of 1884. Oberlin, Ohio is often called "The Town That Started The Civil War." Three of its citizens accompanied John Brown on his Harper's Ferry Raid. Oberlin College is the oldest coeducational institution (1837) and the first college to admit African-Americans (1837).

Found this today. It's a little political cartoon making fun of the Confederate Calvary stamped on the front of a Union soldier's envelope.

Confederate Mail Postmarked "Bristol V+ T R.R." meaning BRISTOL VA. & TENN. RAILROAD.



This was called "The Most Historical Building in the South" because it housed the offices used by Jefferson Davis and his Cabinet during the time Montgomery was Capitol of the Confederacy.

This is printed on the back of a Selma Land Company envelope.

Looks like the Wright Brothers were looking for publicity when they were in Montgomery trying to sell their airplanes to the Army.

Pretty cool street scene from before 1907. You can see the Alabama State Capitol at the end of Dexter.


Many thanks to Ray Hutto for shooting us this link to the Vietnam Memorial Wall.
Three of my closest childhood friends are on that Wall.

Hurley Alvin Smith's Daddy was my Dad's "main man" @ Jack Wise Tire Co. From 1959 until Alvin graduated from high school in '66, I spent almost every weekend doing something with Hurley Alvin. We kept chickens, pigeons, crows, quail and pheasants. We had horses and ponies. We had a trap line set up around the Turkey Pond located south of Porter's Fairy Land. We usually fished Enon Pond or the VFW. I learned a lot about the woods and water from Hurley Alvin.

Hurley Alvin Smith
Lance Corporal
United States Marine Corps
Dothan, Alabama
November 27, 1946 to February 02, 1968
HURLEY A SMITH is on the Wall at Panel 36E Line 086
See the full profile for Hurley Smith


Contact Us Copyright© 1997-2010, Ltd ®(TM) Last update 02/20/2010

The next cat I looked up on The Wall was Morgan Weed.
Click on the following link if you want to read about a true hero.
Morgan was from Andalusia & he was Assistant Activities Director at the Boy Scout Reservation near New Brockton. He taught me Nature, Archery & Marksmanship Merit Badge in '62 & '63. In '67, I would become Assistant Activities Director and teach Nature Merit Badge. This experience lead directly to my teaching career in Bilology.Over the years after Morgan moved to Decatur, I ran into him at Order of the Arrow functions and saw him a couple of times during my freshman year at Alabama. I had no idea the Army had pulled Morgan out of Law School at Bama and that he was in Vietnam until a fellow Scout walked into Dr. Strong's Political Science class and told me Morgan had been killed in Cambodia. This was May of 1970 and the University of Alabama was under martial law because of the Kent State protests.

Morgan William Weed
First Lieutenant
Army of the United States
Decatur, Alabama
January 02, 1945 to May 11, 1970
MORGAN W WEED is on the Wall at Panel 10W Line 020
See the full profile for Morgan Weed


Contact Us Copyright© 1997-2010, Ltd ®(TM) Last update 02/21/2010

The last of my friends on the Wall is Gary Tomlinson
Who was the very first person I saw on the first day I ever walked into the Student Union Building @ The University of Alabama in September of 1968? GARY TOMLINSON! What a sight for sore eyes!
Gary was in charge of the information desk @ The Union Building and the next year I got hired on Work-Study as the maintenance man for the Union. I had met Gary during high school because he was Area Chief for our division of The Order of The Arrow. Gary had been Chief of Cherokee 50 and because I was Secretary of Cowikee Lodge, I was involved in some of the politics that got Gary elected Area Chief. I really wish I had gotten to know Gary better.

Thanks Ray. This was sad but I have some precious memories of these three cats. I looked up to each one of them like a big brother.
Gary Preston Tomlinson
First Lieutenant
Army of the United States
Birmingham, Alabama
September 03, 1947 to July 03, 1971
GARY P TOMLINSON is on the Wall at Panel 03W Line 099
See the full profile for Gary Tomlinson



Contact Us Copyright© 1997-2010, Ltd ®(TM) Last update 02/21/2010

Friday, February 26, 2010

I am a good old Georgia boy stuck for awhile in Seattle
To sort of steal a line Seattle is fine but it aint Georgia I am stuck writing a brief and having just loaded my ipod with every Atlanta Rhythm Section song ever made I was just doing a little cruisin on the web and found your blog.

It makes me miss home so much more My mommas folks are all from Florence Alabama and I sure miss Muscle Shoals All that great music

Your photos and stories just bring it home to me I was at a club called Richards in Atlanta in the early seventies when I first saw the Atlanta Rhythm Section They had these little Fender amps and were just so Professional it just blew my socks off.

Before that seeing I dont know how many times the Allman Brothers playing for free in Piedmont Park No guitar player ever made my heart cry the way Duane did --man I miss him.

I have always said if I could sing like Otis and play like Duane I'd be in heaven.

I got divorced but before I did I was living at Saint Simons where my ex lives in my house --and I sure do miss my house and the beach and the barbecue and everything else.

Keep writing



An essay by Danny Miller:

People often ask me who is the best band I have ever seen?
I have been watching live rock
and roll bands since 1960,have seen more than most people, and the finest band I ever saw was
The Candymen.
30 years later, I have never seen a better band. They were inspiring and I saw
them many times between 1966-69. Sadly, they never got the recognition they deserved. They
should have been intemational superstars. They certainly had the talent and the charisma. They
were the backup band for Roy Orbison, and were named after his 1961 hit "Candy Man."
They left Roy and recorded 2 excellent albums of their own original material. The band consisted of John Rainey Adkins on lead guitar, Billy Gilmore on bass, Dean Daughtry on keyboards, Robert Nix on drums, and Rodney Justo on lead vocals. They were virtuosos on their respective instruments, and Rodney is the best male vocalist I've ever heard. Man for man, they could play and sing better than anybody. I first saw them at Misty Waters in Decatur, Georgia in June of 1966. It was their second time there. Two of my bandmates saw them the first time they played there and called me the next moming, all excited, and raving about this incredible band called The Candymen, who had rocked Misty Waters the night before. At that time, the best band we had ever seen was The Bushmen from Douglas, Georgia. They were fabulous, and we wanted to be like them. I asked
my bandmates, "Are they as good as The Bushmen?" They said, "With no disrespect, they are
twice as good as the Bushmen." I just had to see this for myself.

When you are a young band, like us, you find older bands, like The Bushmen, to use as role models. We watched and learned from them. The Candymen were about to change our lives. The night arrived for their second appearance at Misty Waters. The place was packed. Every musician in town was there. I made my way through the crowd to the stage and checked out their equipment. All musicians do that.
We think we might discover some way to improve our sound. Onstage was the most beat up,
ragged equipment I had ever seen. I wondered if it would even work. It was pitiful looking. In
those days, bands usually dressed alike and often had fancy new gear. The guitarist and the bass
player had Marshall amplifiers. We had never heard of a Marshall. What kind of off brand amplifier is that? There was a beat up, green Fender Telecaster leaning against an amp. I looked at my bandmates and said, "What have you guys gotten me into?" They said, "Just wait."

In a few minutes 5 handsome guys, dressed differently, took the stage. The lead guitarist was wearing blue jeans, white tennis shoes, and oh no, horror of horrors, had his shirt tail out-and it was a fancy shirt. I had never seen anything like that.
Where were the matching clothes like all the

"good" bands wore?
I was getting cynical. My doubts soon vaporized. After 2 songs they owned the hearts and minds of everyone there. It was the most amazing live music I have ever heard.
I stood there stunned and soaking it all up.
It was a religious experience.
My life changed that night. No band had ever affected me that way before. They sounded better than the record. Better than anything I had ever heard. They were very powerful and played the hardest songs effortlessly. The great music I heard coming out of that beat up equipment was magnificent. I didn't know a band could be that good. They were on a musical level far above anything we had ever seen. They were world class. They became my musical heroes and I went to see them any time I didn't bave a gig of my own. They demonstrated excellence, professionalism, major league cool, and motivated us all to become better musicians. My fellow musicians and I wanted to be like them. I learned something every time I saw them. It was "Rock School" for me. I painted my 1956 Stratocaster green, and I've tried to make every band I have ever formed or joined sound like them. Later, I became friends with John Rainey and played a few gigs with Dean Daughtry.
Being friends with your heroes is fun. Thanks for the memories.

Another Essay By Danny Miller

August 12~1999
I have been inspired by many guitar players during my life~ but two guitarists~
Barry Bailey (The Atlanta Rhythm Section) and John Rainey Adkins ( The Candymen
and Beaverteeth), probably had more influence on me than any of the others. Both of
these fine Southern gentlemen inspired me in unique ways, and taught me more than
they will ever know. I learned music~ musicianship, and cool from them. I owe them a
tremendous debt of gratitude, and I'm proud to say that I became friends with both of
It's fun to know your heroes.

Dennis Saint John & The Cardinals- image courtesy of Phil Bonner Jr.!/profile.php?id=100000511467027

I met Barry Bailey during the summer of 1965. We were both 17. I had heard about him from some friends in Junior Achievement who went to school with him. He was playing a Gretsch Country Gentleman through a DeArmond Amplifier. His band, The Vans, were playing in the parking lot of the Sears store at Columbia Mall. As soon as they started playing~ I realized I was experiencing something very special. It changed my life. I had never seen anything like that. As an upcoming young guitarist myself, I was listening to every guitar player I could find~and desperately searching for own my musical identity. Barry Bailey was playing very mature guitar.
His ability was way beyond his years, and he had total command of his instrument. He
was a young virtuoso and the standard by which all of us were measured. He set the bar
high. He had the sound, the style, the soul and the technique that immediately went
straight into my heart~ and he did it all just standing there looking bored, but classy. It
seemed effortless. I was totally mesmerized. I didn't realize it at the time~ but I was
witnessing true cool. I had found my role model and I wanted to be just like him. I
introduced myself and we talked briefly about amps. That night~ I became a lifetime fan
and went to see him play as often as possible. He inspired my style, my sound~and my
musical attitude. I still try to see him play whenever possible. I never got tired of
listening to him. He is still a hero to me.

I first saw John Rainey Adkins during the summer of 1966 at Misty Waters. I was 18 and he was 24. He was playing a Fender Telecaster with a thumb pick through a Marshall amplifier.
His band~The Candymen are
still to this day~the finest band I ever saw.
They achieved a level of musical ability under his leadership that remains unequaled. They were a musician's band. They played the
hardest songs perfectly. They were grown men who were all world class professional
musicians. They had traveled the world backing up Roy Orbison~ and they knew The
Beatles. They were the real deal. They were the first great band I had ever seen that did
not dress alike. John Rainey was the essence of 1960's cool. He wore blue jeans,
tennis shoes, his shirt tail out, and a scarf on stage, and he bounced up and down as he
played. He projected virtuosity, happiness~ wit~ and true cool. His playing was perfect
and effortless. He played the hardest licks correctly and with the correct sound and
attitude. I wanted to be just like him. We became friends years later and he told me
many fascinating stories. I went to see The Candymen play anytime I wasn't playing.
Watching them was like going to rock and roll school. I never failed to learn something
from them. John Rainey inspired me to work hard, learn things right, and to become
a professional guitar player. I last saw him in 1982. He died in 1989.

I know this only because I received the same email. The great Candymen story was submitted by Danny MILLER...not Moore! I double checked my email to confirm my suspicions that you were typing "Moore" while your brain was screaming "'s MILLER"!!!
Roll Tide!!

Davis & his family lived in this house in Montgomery from February of 1861 until the capitol was moved to Richmond in July. This old 1910 post card was made before the house was moved to its present location across the street from the Capitol beside The Alabama Archives & History Building. We appreciate Ray Hutto for sending us this link last week to some superb original Civil War photographs

Published in Tuscaloosa, Alabama by Imperial Press - Robert M. Shelton, editor

Steve Shannon still has a morning show here on 105.9

Postmarked AUTAUGAVILLE, ALABAMA, February 11, 1908

part of a 1900 Central of Georgia Railway Co. map

1942 Standard Oil Florida Road Map

Thursday, February 25, 2010


Wednesday, February 24, 2010

"No great story about the Skyvue. Recall as a small kid sitting up in the back window watching & sleeping thru some movie. Remember how far it seemed to go to walk to get popcorn. Used to wonder why so many car windows were fogged up! (any ideas?) Then, one of the last times as a teenager going down front with some guys and swinging on the swing sets that were immediately in front of the screen. Boy, the screen is really large that close up! The last time I saw it before it was razed, it looked pretty bad, abandoned, and sad. About three years ago, went to a drive in east of Birmingham. Was to supposed to have watched one of the Pirates of the Caribbean movies. You could hear it fine, but the screen was so dark, virtually anyone could have been in the sword fights!"

"I remember waking up one night in my car about 12:00 o'clock, looked at my girlfriend and said, 'Your Mom won't be mad, will she ??' Guess what the answer was !!! Not real good !!!!!!! But I think the movie was , LOL !!!!!!"


Concerning the Skyvue , The thing I remember best was that magical night she said , " Put it in." The first is the best memory , although I also don't recall the film .

"Certain people come to mind, the bugs, heat, and of course, there are some things I keep to myself!!
Didn't watch many movies there!"

Robert Register is really enjoying rereading Lewis Grizzard's DON'T BEND OVER IN THE GARDEN, GRANNY, YOU KNOW THEM TATERS GOT EYES. That cat had a comic timing & delivery that was unsurpassed.

B.J. Thomas & Beaverteeth
B.J. Thomas & His Backup Band
Photo taken in front of the Bitter End in New York City
Left to right: Rodney Justo, David Adkins, John Rainey Adkins,B.J. Thomas, Jimmy Dean, Charlie Silva, Jon Stroll

Hey Roberto----Enjoyed seeing the article about B.J. Thomas and Brazil. When I was picking bass with Beaverteeth and we were BJ's backup band, we went with him to Brazil and it was a real trip. Huge crowds at every place we played. He was always introduced on stage as "Bee Gee To-MAS!" which always cracked us up.
Rodney "The Rocker" Justo got hit square in the nuts by a large chunk of ice thrown from the audience one night while we were onstage, folded up like a paper fan and went to the floor. B and me were about to go out into the audience after we left the stage and take them all on, but somebody with good sense talked us out of it, thankfully. We would have been slaughtered. It wasn't funny at the time, but I have missed no opportunity since then to razz the ol' Rodno about it.
B and I talk several times a week now via the new-fangled text-message thing on the cell phone. I am happy to say he is still working steadily and drawing big crowds. He and my old buddy from the Bill Lowery days, Billy Joe Royal, work together often now and have been really successful with their "Raindrops to Boondocks" shows. I got to visit with both of them back in October of last year when they were in the area to a sold out show, and it was great seeing them again.
BJ told me tonight he was looking forward to getting the demo from Buddy and JR of the new song they wrote. He said it has to be great. I can't wait to hear it. I definitely want the Collector's Choice compilation Buddy mentioned in his note to you. I will see if I can filch one free from BJ. If not, I will gladly buy it when it comes out.
One of the greatest joys I have had at this point in my life has been reconnecting with the guys I knew in the business back then---it was friendship and business back then; now it is just friendship. That is pretty special.

My Quest is not a long story.
It started less than three years ago @ Sonny's BBQ in Panama City.
An old friend told me,"Robert, you're never gonna be happy until you find a woman."
She were right.

So here I is.

Yesterday I found this quote by a cat named ANTOINE DE SAINT-EXUPERY

"Love does not consist in gazing at each other but in looking together in the same direction."

I liked that quote so much I looked the cat up.


Let me know what cha think...


image courtesy of

The Work of Michael McCarty:

So Sad To See Another Miserable Victim of SAIL CAT Licking & He Can't Even Find A Sail Cat...

left to right: Mike Holmes, Mike Bennett, Unidentified, David A. Smith, Chuck Bryan about to embark upon a canoe ride on Spring Creek down to the Chipola & a take out below I-10 @ Magnolia Bridge.

My Mama Kate left us so much & her clipping here tells you a lot about My Mother. The last thing I ever said to her was,"Mama, I'm so sorry that we had so many cross words." She replied,"That's to be expected,Son,I love ya."