Stories from the Road #2

STORIES FROM THE ROAD!A series of first-hand tales from a Texas Musician and songwriter...

I’m beginning a new series of posts I’ve entitled, “Stories From the Road.” Each week I will post a new story from Rick Sikes, a Texas musician who traveled the roads of Texas, Oklahoma, New Mexico and out to California for well over twenty years. With hours to pass in a van full of sweaty musicians, they found ways to entertain themselves. These stories are told in Rick Sikes’ words. I’ll do my best to correct grammar, but I want to keep them in his own voice.

“When I was a very young kid, around sixteen, Hank Williams Sr. played in Brownwood at the old Soldiers and Sailors Auditorium. He was definitely an idol of mine. It was sort of an amateur type show first, and then they brought Hank out as the big entertainment. I did my little part in the amateur show. I don’t remember what I sang. Little Joe Carson was there…some people may remember him. He was quite a musician. Anyway, I did my bit and I got to talk to Hank, which I found out in later years was very unusual. He didn’t talk that much, or at least that’s what I was told by Sammy Pruett, who was Hank’s guitar player. I did some gigs with Sammy years later on down the line and I related this story to him. He said that Hank simply didn’t often talk to people, but that every once in a while, he’d talk to a kid like me. Probably because I was young and sincere and he sensed something in me. Anyway, Hank Williams Sr. told me to go out there and ‘make the audience feel what you feel. You make them hear what you are saying…’

Projecting yourself is what it basically came down to. I watched him that night and I never saw any other entertainer that had the magnetism, or projection that this guy had. He was not flashy and it almost appeared as if he had stage fright. He had a presence. There was something around him beyond himself and it worked. He could captivate an audience with just his presence on stage before he said anything. It really wasn’t that he was all that great of a looking guy or anything like that, it was just something that he did. It was a form of magic and I worked hard to understand it and to learn to do that – to project. I got to where I could bring the audience to my way of thinking. I could make them cry or laugh or feel whatever emotion I wanted them to feel. I think this is probably one of the most important things an entertainer can learn to do.”

Hank_Sr
Hank Williams, Sr.

 

IMG_20170918_0001
A Very Young Rick Sikes

 

 

11 thoughts on “Stories from the Road #2

  1. I loved reading this and seeing Hank Williams Sr. through Rick’s eyes. I am enjoying the history and interactions you are sharing with us along with some awesome photographs, too.

    Like

  2. Jan- what an amazing story. Rick visiting with Hank Sr. That’s truly a dream come true for anyone, even if you weren’t a singer, that would forever be a lifetime memory. Rick truly must of been an amazing man. After reading your 4 books, I sincerely felt I knew you both so personally. You truly wrote the perfect 4 book series about your & Rick’s life. A series that will forever stay with me.
    Love you Dearly.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m sorry I missed this last week. What a great post. I would’ve dearly loved to have met Hank Sr. I think he really and truly did his best each time he got on stage. He was in such deep pain though. So sad. Rick always knew where to be for his best advantage and got some wonderful interaction with these larger-than-life performers.

    Like

Leave a Reply to rijanjks Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.