Vulnerability and Dereliction….#141 (the 70’s)


Kiowa – 1 mile

Gary’s  home life dissidence becoming a factor, an encroaching  desire of withdrawal surfacing,  the musician still able to continue fulfilling his musical comment finding that the out-of-town weekly excursion to Alva provided temporary relief from the inner self-inflicted turmoil of Oklahoma City.  A lack of communication with his spouse propelling no chance of abatement,  with a resolute atmosphere prevailing the toll of adversity of the past year events having vividly been etched within.  At a loss for direction a decision to let circumstances dictate the path  and the future.

The throes of summer finding Nite Lite Club and the Persuaders remaining an overwhelming success being approached with several booking opportunities.  An evening finding Gary  being introduced by Kenny’s friend Jan to her boss Judy Jantz,  the owner of  a ladies apparel establishment in the state-line  Kansas community of  Kiowa and the president of the Kiowa Chamber of Commerce.  Judy asking about the availability of the band to play a Labor Day weekend dance.  Gary informed that Kiowa was well-known for its gala Labor Day presentation, the visitors to the event doubling the town’s population.  The City sponsored weekend event renown for a free afternoon bean feed, craft exhibits,  a tractor pull, a amusement ride concession and the Labor Day dance.  The offer spurring Gary’s interest and without hesitation accepted Judy’s offer to play the labor day weekend event.   Judy and Jan continuing to attend the club several weekends in a row, but when Kenny Kannada made a decision to give the band notice because of a sultana obligation in Oklahoma City,  Jan continued to attend conversing with the band during their breaks.  Gary was conscious of his station but when in  the company of Jan an acquisition of compatibility began to evolve registering an inauguration of more than just concern, in a moment effeteness and dereliction accepting Jan’s suggestion that they venture to her place in Kiowa for breakfast.  During the coming weekends before labor day Jan would frequent the club and when in her company Gary discovering a blinding solace never experienced before,  a patented subjectiveness over shadowing his resistance and vulnerability.

Labor Day – Kiowa

Janet Murrow

The Persuaders didn’t please everyone at the labor day dance, when Gary had signed the contract Kenny Kannada was with the band, and Judy Jantz with the chamber of commerce expecting the country music talent to be performing.   *Ole Blue, Gary’s 66 Ford pickup, as penned by Bob Wallace, was loaded with the band equipment for the return to Oklahoma City,  spending the night in Kiowa the pianist was not looking forward to the calescent drive back to the City in the non-air conditioned Ford.  Viewing a Wichita newspaper,  discovering the central plains and the southwest all attesting to the exceedingly high temperatures, with the exception of  Colorado Springs,  the thermometer augmenting a high of  sixty degrees.   An agrarian accord enveloping Gary, a wild but definitive plotting purpose surfacing,  an excursion to find cooler weather,  Colorado Springs meeting the criteria.  It being cool and less than a day’s journey,  Jan’s air-conditioned 1971 Ford  Torino availing the transportation.  The Musician having no qualms about leaving the tarp covered equipment in the bed of the pickup parked in the residential area of  the quiescent domain of Kiowa.  The only concern was voiced by Jan saying that her Aunt and Uncle, Esther and Charles Terry would be able to view the parked pickup in front of her rental from their residence on Coates Street. With the sound of John Denver’s Rocky Mountain High on the radio the ensuing journey began, the couple looking forward to the of cooling atmosphere of Colorado Springs.

an’s 1971 Ford Torino

The road to Seven Falls SW of Colorado Springs

The perdition of the Nite Lite presenting a quandary for the band, Vel apparently never anticipated that the Persuaders would continually draw such a crowd,  coming to the conclusion that relinquishing  the door cover charge to the band instead of paying a contract wage was a mistake.  He could do the math,  witnessing the loss of income deciding to renege on the agreement, the band  having no alternative but to agree to his terms at least for the time being.   No longer established as a fixture, the band  wasn’t without recourse,  enhancing other opportunities, partaking of the acquaintances made in Alva, availing  the Moose,  the Elks Lodge, an open air dance in Anthony Kansas and even a very high paying private barn dance sponsored by a wealthy farmer.

Gary’s home life continued on a downhill slope coming to a defining moment, congruent with his spouse, a decision was made that it would be in the best interest of both parties  for him to dislodge himself from the residence.  Packing nothing but his clothes he enrolled in a one-bedroom downstairs apartment in the Penn Apartments at S.W. 36th and Pennsylvania Ave not far  from his home for the past 11 years.  The budding relationship between Jan and Gary  was on hold  because of the miles of separation,  the music commerce in Oklahoma City was in transition,  the number of accomplishments providing live entertainment was in declination.   An application of the past years of experience finding Gary utilizing his talent for retention,  traversing the highway when the expediency of local expenditures failed,  a combination of travel and local acuity filling  the band calendar.   Gary having a serious discussion with Jan about her moving to Oklahoma City, understanding the difficulty she would have confronting the contentions of her parents about residing with a married man almost eleven years her senior.  Gary also having a concern but accepting the inevitable, he would have to meet her parents.

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