First off before I say anything here I have to THANK Young Mary Sparr for the use of the cover photo and to Mr. Scooter Ward out in North Carolina for the constant updates as I was returning home from Louisville to see Mr. Brian Houserman in the hospital today.
Mr. Bandana and Brittany Avery AKA Six Gun Britt were two of the first people I ever met after my horrible divorce in the MySpace days, man those were some memories indeed. I was very very poor and left with thousands in bills from an abusive marriage, I left…just dropped everything and left. Lived in my car for a little while before I got back on my feet and was surfing MySpace extensively.
I began to notice this underground music, roots music or whatever you want to call it. I began to meet new people and new bands, and Mr. Bandana was my first one. I was already involved with music before my marriage and during my two year marriage I was made to drop music and pay all attention to her and her family. During that time Shooter was going solo and released “Put The O Back In Country”, Hank 3 was going from playing metal to signing with Curb Records and the Legendary Kayton Roberts playing steel on his first two albums. I found Kara Clark, The G Damn Gallows, J.B. Beverley, The Honky Tonk Hustlas, St. Christopher, The .357 String Band…and the list went on.
I met people like Mr. Bandana and we began exchanging inboxes daily, and swapping knowledge. He admired me and I admired him, and I loved his stories because much like Billy Don Burns sings…he was there. He was a seasoned road veteran for many more years than I had been alive, and served as security for Hank Williams Jr during his Jimmy Bowen produced iconic Outlaw Country albums of the late 70’s and throughout the 80’s.
I knew when people died within Country Music and I knew when they were born, I knew who wrote what and producers…but I never KNEW THEM like Mr. Bandana did. I can have all the book knowledge I want, I’ll never ever trump his position in the music business, because I wasn’t there. I didn’t witness iconic shows nationwide the likes of him or festivals like he did, and even though many admire my articles I’ll never know or touch people’s lives like he did.
He joked often he was an asshole and I always regarded him as OUR asshole and if you believe there is a “scene” he would have told you there wasn’t, there was just good music. He was quick with tittie jokes and sexual innuendos of all types with the ladies and he kept the middle finger and the rebel flag flying. If you knew his voice mail he told you to keep it flying on his voice mail.
He adored Waylon Jennings to the extent of his kissing his necklace symbol often and wore the many tattoos of many bands on his body, he was proud to be a part of music. He and I met for the first time when Hank 3 played the Hall Of Fame for the Williams Family Exhibit in 2009 and we talked for quite some time about everything. During our friendship we talked about everything from good brands of diabetic socks to whether or not Waylon and Cash really ate Froot Loops from a coffeepot in Reno Nevada.
We exchanged books within our tenure together many times and swapped many many pictures inboxed. I told him about all these bands I began to find and he did the same, eventually we both became regulars at Muddy Roots Music Festivals in Cookeville. He always drove his golf cart and he was dubbed “The Pain With A Cane” that cane flew around as he told stories to emphasize things.
Honestly in my opinion HE WAS the show, and the bands just happened to be there. I mean honestly I saw him in more states and more venues than anyone short of Mr. Joshua Morningstar. I remember the three of us standing on the porch of the services for Colonel Jon, who absolutely adored Mr.Bandana. He could name venues in places I never even heard of and had a collection of passes that someone my age could only dream about.
He turned me onto the pop country bashing website Farce The Music.com who I still to this day enjoy and the ever popular youtube video show Big D’s Redneck Minute where he broadcast the iconic video plea to reinstate Hank Williams back into Opry membership. I began finding all the Texas underground music and showing it to him like Sunny Sweeney and Heather Myles, and he showed me East Coast music like Ronnie Hymes.
Mr. Bandana died tonight around 8:30 central time in North Carolina from an infection. As soon as I learn of service arrangements I shall include them in this article or make another follow up article.