Search the Western Clippings Site

An Interview With…
        - Archives

Will "Sugarfoot" Hutchins
    - December 2017
    - September 2017
    - August 2017
    - July 2017
    - May 2017
    - April 2017
    - January 2017
    - December 2016
    - October 2016
    - September 2016
    - August 2016
    - July 2016
    - May 2016
    - March 2016
    - February 2016
    - January 2016
    - December 2015
    - November 2015
    - September 2015
    - August 2015
    - July 2015
    - May 2015
    - April 2015
    - March 2015
    - February 2015
    - January 2015
    - December 2014
    - November 2014
    - October 2014
    - September 2014
    - August 2014
    - July 2014
    - May 2014
    - April 2014
    - March 2014
    - February 2014
    - January 2014
    - December 2013
    - November 2013
    - October 2013
    - September 2013
    - August 2013
    - July 2013
    - June 2013
    - May 2013
    - April 2013
    - March 2013
    - February 2013
    - January 2013
    - December 2012
    - November 2012
    - October 2012
    - September 2012
    - August 2012
    - July 2012
    - June 2012
    - May 2012
    - April 2012
    - March 2012
    - February 2012
    - January 2012
    - December 2011
    - November 2011
    - October 2011
    - August 2011
    - July 2011
    - June 2011
    - May 2011
    - April 2011
    - March 2011
    - February 2011
    - January 2011
    - December 2010
    - November 2010
    - October 2010
    - September 2010
    - August 2010
    - July 2010
    - June 2010
    - May 2010
    - April 2010
    - March 2010
    - February 2010
    - January 2010
    - November 2009
    - October 2009
    - September 2009
    - August 2009
    - July 2009
    - June 2009
    - May 2009
    - April 2009
    - March 2009
    - February 2009
    - January 2009
    - December 2008
    - November 2008
    - September 2008
    - August 2008
    - June 2008
    - April 2008
    - March 2008
    - February 2008

Do You Remember?
    - Archives

Comic Book Cowboys
    - Archives

Westerns of...
    - Archives

Heavies and Characters
      - Archives

The Stuntmen - Neil Summers
    - Archives

Western Treasures
    - Archives

Circus Cowboys
    - Archives

Rangeland Elegance
    - Archives

Western Artifacts
    - Archives

Film Festival Fotos
    - Archives

Silent Western Reviews
    - Archives

Serial Report
    - Archives

Research & Consulting

Subscribe to Western Clippings

Other Western Links

COLLECTIBLES FOR SALE:

Western Clippings Back Issues

Serial Report Back Issues

Daily Comic Strips

Sunday Comic Strips

Books

Miscellaneous Collectibles

Lobby Cards

Laser Copies of Lobby Cards

Movie Posters

Home

APRIL 2015

Howdy! Know what’s wrong with the world? No background music. Except in our house. As I reminisce in ink, cowboy songs fill the air and our hearts. Songs by Les Gilliam, the Oklahoma Balladeer. His music’s the food of love, and we all had seconds.

Babs and I were introduced to the wonders of western flick fests 24 years ago. But gettin’ there was no fun. Our flight was buckier than an electric bull ride. Babs and I sported 20 white knuckles. All we saw was fog. Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claustrophobia. I felt like Cagney in “Ceiling Zero”. When I fly I never go to the bathroom. No seat belts. ‘Twasn’t always like this. Years ago I flew to Edwards Air Force Base in a twin-seater jet. Pilot asked me if I’d like to experience a few loop-de-loops. Why, sure! Yeehawwww! Plum thrilling! Pilot told me that once he flew Al ‘Captain Video’ Hodge to an airfield jam-packed with waiting fans. Al ok’d a few loop-de-loops of his own. They landed before an audience of hundreds of screaming kiddies. Captain Video got out onto the wing and gave the crowd his famous greeting—with a loud ZOOM! He shot out his right arm, and proceeded to upchuck all over his G-suit.

Driving nowadaze is even hairier, each mile down the road fraught with peril. I envision the day when America is criss-crossed by giant vacuum tubes. Get in, and you’re compressed to wherever you want to go.

One year when I was at the Memphis Film Festival Elisha Cook Jr. arrived sloshed, stayed sloshed, and flew home sloshed. Yet, he lived past 90. The happy sauce killed all the germs. Huntz Hall paid a visit to the gift shop. That’s all he paid. He removed $1,000 worth of merchandise and charged it to the festival. After that, the little store was dubbed the Huntz Hall Memorial Gift Shop.

I love the south. The beauty of the land, the houses, the cookin’, Elvis. Folks are finer than frog hair. They belong to the 4-H club—Happy Howdies, Handshakes ‘n Horsepitality—and kissylips galore from the gals. None of those neck-wrenchin’ air kisses. And they love westerns and WESTERN CLIPPINGS.

What wild yarns were spun at the panel discussions at A Gathering of Guns in ‘09, some even true. Sweet Anne Helm fondly remembered Elvis as an angel. Anne, you’re an angel. Wish we coulda takin’ in all the screenings. A warm bunch showed up for a Sweet Toes episode, “Hideout” with Pete Brown, Paul Fix and my all-time favorite leading lady, Anita Gordon. Alas, she passed on thru a while back.

Ty Hardin as Paladin, Johnny Washbrook tries his best to keep Ty 'on the right page.' and Will Hutchins as the old prospector.The Big Banquet was a Hoo Haw and a half. Jeff Conners, Chuck’s son, showed his pluck on the git fiddle. Jennings Barnett turned into Red Skelton before our very eyes. He honored my request to mime Red’s Chinese poison dart-blower routine. Gary Yoggy directed a wild and wooly radio re-creation of “Have Gun will Travel” starring Ty Hardin as an unforgettable Paladin. He’s the only actor I’ve ever seen ad lib with a script in hand. Slapdash surrealism. Who laffed louder, the audience of us performers? One for the books. Boyd Magers was Hey Boy with a stiff—neck. Yoggy and Jim Kocher were cussin’ crows. Donna Magers was a proper crow-sitter. Jan Merlin was an ornery gunslinger. Sharon Willing, Foy’s widow, was a chirpy Miss Wong, sort of a Hey Girl. My bride Babs played a town biddy a la Margaret Hamilton. When she exited I shouted, “Now git! And that goes for your little dog ToTo, too!” I played an old gold prospector. Johnny Washbrook provided the glue that kept our show from falling apart. All of us cowpokes and cowpokesses were awarded certificates of honor, beautifully framed by Dottie and Alex McCollum. (Wait til my dentist gets a load of this plaque!) Accompanied by Les Gilliam, Babs, Donna, Boyd, Mike Patrick, Caroline Hardin, Bonnie Boyd and Carla Borelli-May sang the themesongs to the Warner Bros. TV westerns. Fittingly, a tonal-Ty said, “I’d like to speak to you about being off-key.” Boyd said, “Ty, I’d like to speak to you about being on the right page.” Denny Miller said, “Never judge a man, unless you walk a mile in his shoes—then you’ll be a mile away, and you’ll have his shoes!” Great grub, great grog, great gab, great group, by gar, featuring those rollicking rascals Don Collier, Henry Darrow, Jim Drury, Bob Fuller and Donald May. How jolly! You really had to be there that year!

       Adios—