Happy Valentine’s Day!

Written by Don Reid. Posted in General

            Today was Valentine’s Day.  A time for candlelight dinners, romantic music and maybe even a dance around the floor a time or two.  An orchestra playing our favorite song; a heart-shaped box of candy; a dozen red roses and …..or is that just in the movies?  Yeah, probably so.

Well, here’s how it was at our house.

            Thinking we might be called on to keep some grandchildren before the evening was over (which we love to do) and not really wanting to fight a restaurant crowd on one of the busiest nights of the year, we decided to do something different.  We went to lunch!

            Yes, lunch at one of our favorite spots and then we went to the movies.  I have loved going to the movies since I was six-years old when I started going every Saturday morning without fail.  And I still enjoy the whole process – the smell of the popcorn in the lobby; the trivia quizzes on the screen while you’re waiting in your seat; the previews of what’s coming next week and next month and then the opening fanfare that lets you know the main feature is about to start.  Loved it then, love it now.  But let’s backup to the lobby.

            Any man who can understand the pricing formula at a theater concession stand could understand and create the national budget.  No matter what I order, there’s a better deal to be had. 

            “I’ll take a small drink and a medium popcorn,” I say with confidence.

            “For another seventy-five cents you can get a large box of popcorn, sir.”

            “Okay,” I say shaking my head.

            “And for another fifty cents you can get a bottomless tub of popcorn, sir.”

            “Fine,” I say without really knowing if that’s a good deal or not or even considering if anyone would ever really need a bottomless tub of popcorn.

            “And a large drink comes automatically with the tub, sir, for just another fifty cents.

            “Sounds good,” I say reaching for my money.

            Then, of course, Debbie gets a drink and an $8.50 candy bar that looks suspiciously like one that Kroger has on the shelf for $1.25.  So now we have more Coke that we can possibly drink, more popcorn than we can possibly eat and a candy bar that won’t last through the cartoon if indeed they still showed cartoons.  I’m adding all this up in my head and then figuring in the price of the tickets and realize we have just spent $43 for the two of us to go to the movies  But  you know who I’m really feeling sorry for?  That teenager I used to be.  That sixteen-year old boy who just wants to take his girl to the movies.  How in the world can he do it?  They can go out to a decent restaurant and have a meal for what it cost to work their way through the lobby and down the aisle of Theater #14. 

            But even this wasn’t the capper.  On the way home we were both silent as neither one of us wanted to admit just how horrible the movie was.  (I won’t tell you the title as you might disagree and think it was really funny.)  We were both glad to be home and our dog was glad to see us.  Next time I get the urge to go to the movies I think I’ll just give $43 to the first teenage boy I see on the street and wish him luck. 

            Happy Valentine’s Day!


                                                                     DSR – 2/14/13


Just A Few Old Memories

Written by Don Reid. Posted in General

I know this looks like an ad, but it really isn’t.  I’m not trying to sell you something; I just thought I’d reminiscence with you for a moment.  This box set, just released, is a compilation of our first eight (8) albums on Mercury records – 1970-1974. 

It features some songs and some entire albums that have never before been on cd.  These babies saw the light of day on vinyl and 8-track.  That must sound like caveman talk to many of you.  (And I haven’t even gotten up to cassettes yet.)

When it first arrived, I took an afternoon and rode around in my car for a couple of hours and just listened as if I had never heard these songs before.  Some I would swear I haven’t, it’s been so long.  But each one of them brought back memories that I hadn’t visited for years.  Sometimes I was reminded of the writing session, sometimes of the recording session and sometimes I found myself wondering what the next line would be or how the song would end.

 To say I was entertained by these songs would sound haughty so I won’t say that.  But I will say they made me smile from time to time. 

 Pictures – That was the song that started all the nostalgia trend for us.  It set the mood of the style and subject we would become known for.

Tender Years – An old George Jones song written by Daryl Edwards was the song that first got me interested in country music.  I was just a kid, but the structure and the lyric were like nothing I had ever heard before.

When You and I Were Young, Maggie – That’s what my daddy called my mom even though her name was nothing close to it.  I never knew why and I remember being barely able to get through the recording of it without crying.

Take Me Home Country Roads- People in West Virginia got mad at us because we changed the words to “Ole Virginia”.  I admit we shouldn’t have.  Please accept this belated apology.

The Saturday Morning Radio Show (Roadhog) – We never had more fun doing anything in our career.  We wrote it in England, suffering from jet lag, and laughed all night.  As soon as we got stateside, we recorded it and laughed some more.  We have some classic outtakes that are better than what wound up on the record.

I Wish I Could Be – The only song we recorded where we never sang together.  Just four solos.

The Blackwood Brothers by the Statler Brothers – A salute to the heroes who inspired us to sing as we sat in the bleachers and listened and learned from their harmonies and stage presence.  They were our music education.  James Blackwood and J.D. Sumner were our professors.  And later our friends.  We loved them so.

You’ve Been Like A Mother To Me – Ronald Reagan was sitting on the front row and suddenly stood with his hand on his heart when we hit the verse that says “America, stand up and show it”.  It had the same effect on me that “Maggie” did and I finished the song with tears running down my cheeks.

And there are so many more wonderful memories these songs conjure up, but maybe another time.  Thanks for letting me bend your ear. God bless and be careful out there Christmas shopping. 


           DSR- December 7, 2012