Stories From the Road – #13

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

This is part of a 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 bus 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.

RICK:

“Back in the sixties, it wasn’t good enough just to be able to play great music. You had to look like a band and you had to have a little something different or extra that the next guy didn’t. So, we came up with different skits that we’d perform along with certain songs.  My brother, Bobby was always game for acting a fool.

We created this one skit for “Please Mister Custer.” I helped Bobby make a Yankee Calvary uniform he’d slip into that had a wooden block with three holes in it, in the seat of the britches. He wore horn-rimmed glasses and would be saying, “Please Mister Custer, I just don’t want to go. Those people are savages,” and so on until the end of the song. Then, while he was singing, I’d be slipping arrow shafts into the wood block so it looked like he was shot in the rear. At the end, he’d do a stumbling, falling act (Bobby was double-jointed and very agile.) He would fall off the stage and do a dying ritual out on the dance floor.  At the end, he’d lay completely still on the floor with these arrows sticking out of his butt. Then the band would play “Taps” while I pulled the arrows out.

One night we were doing this act and he fell off the stage, wiggling and squirming around like an inchworm with his butt in the air. I  go down, like normal, and start to pull the arrows out while the band plays “Taps.” This lady ran up from out of nowhere, knocked the hell out of me and said, “Get away from him, you son-of-a-bitch. You done hurt him enough already.”

That was one of the skits. We had another little gig we did that was a version of “Hello Walls #2,” that Ben Colder recorded (the old drunk). Bobby would act like he was throwing up. He’d take his hat off and pretend he was throwing up in his hat. One night he was doing that act and he deliberately fell off the edge of the stage and stumbled around on the dance floor until he fell down.

Some drunk lady came running up to him with a wet bar towel trying to wipe his face. She said, “Here, honey. Maybe this will help. I know just how you feel. I’ve been there myself.”

Bobby said, “Dammit lady, get away. Get away. You’re ruining my act.”

She didn’t give up. She said, “I’m gonna help you feel better. I know how it is. I’ve been drunk too.”

We never meant any harm doing these skits. We just wanted to entertain and do more than stand up there and plunk on guitars. It helped earn us a reputation and kept people coming back just to see what we were going to do next.

That was before laser shows and all the fancy electronics they have nowadays. We had to invent our own.”

I searched through tons of pictures looking for one of the “Please Mister Custer” act, and couldn’t find one. But, did find one of Bobby doing “Hello Walls #2.”

Bobby_Drunk_Act
Bobby Sikes doing “Hello Walls #2”

And I found another one of their popular skits where they dressed like Hippies and played rock ‘n roll.

Hippie_Rhythm_Rebels

I hope you've enjoyed this segment of-STORIES FROM THE ROAD-from Texas SingerSongwriterRICK SIKES

 

22 thoughts on “Stories From the Road – #13

  1. Rick had a great sense of humor and loved stuff like this. He also liked to think outside the box which led to doing unique things. I laughed at their “hippie” picture. They look more like pirates to me. So funny. I love reading these stories that I’ve never heard. Just a brilliant idea to post them! Love you, sister.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Oh my goodness, sister. Brilliant? Me? No, far from it. Rick was the brilliant one to write all of these down. Of course, he had no idea I’d ever do anything with them, and neither did it. But, I’m happy I somehow got the inspiration to resurrect them. 🙂 Thank you for stopping by. Love you!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. This made me smile. They were having fun and made it fun for the crowd, too, although a couple didn’t get it:) its true entertainers have all the electronics now, but playing music and putting on an act at same time requires skill. So enjoying this!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Thank you, D.L. I am so glad you found the story entertaining. 🙂 Things were so different back then, but at the same time, some things never change and that is the entertainer’s ability to entertain.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. What a hoot! That was highly entertaining, Jan. I bet those shows where a blast. And suddenly I’m singing the lyrcis to “Please Mister Custer” in my head, LOL. I had forgotten all about that song. Sounds like Rick, Bobby and the others really knew how to entertain an audience!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Beyond a doubt, Tina. But, Bobby had a monkey on his back. When he drank, he always got out of control and it wasn’t pretty, but he was extremely talented and such a jokester. Thanks so much for stopping by, sweet lady.

      Liked by 2 people

  5. Thanks so much jan ,, yes these stories do bring bac memories , actually being there for alot of them , always made me want to incorporate a little more than the music to my shows , seems rick and bobby and dean beard helped me to become a show man instead of juat a singer , musican ,thanks for the memories

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you for your comment, John. Having been there and seen them perform from the time you were just a boy, it means so much to have you stop by. I love sharing these stories and I am SO glad Rick wrote them all down!

      Like

  6. Always regretted not honing my guitar skills…could only chord, but I did write several songs. Your tales from the road bring back some memories for me. Rick and Bobby – my kind of guys! And, ‘the monkey on Bobby’s’ back, I had buddies like that and loved them nonetheless. Great and talented entertainers! Thanks for the memories, Jan. ♥

    Liked by 1 person

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