A Game of Nisus Formativus…#107 (the 60’s)

2644 SW 46 Terrace

It was a favorable circumstance,  Gary and Kaye discovering a house for sale but at the same time a very grievous event for the present owners.   The residence,  a modern brick two bedroom single car garage house on S.W. 46th Terrace, just four doors west of Kaye’s mothers house.   In addition to the house, most of the household furnishing would also be available for sale with the prospective buyer given first option to purchase.  Upon meeting the seller Gary became aware of  the circumstance causing the elderly owner to part with the property, his wife was in the final stage of a terminal illness.  Gary visiting with the owner to finalizing the transaction discovering there was a problem,  the owners wife signature would be required for the deed transfer and her present medical condition was best described as one of low asymmetry consciousness.  The owner called asking the couple to meet with him and his attorney at Mercy Hospital to witness what amounted to a hospital death-bed signature.  Gary and Kaye present for the heartfelt event as the tearful husband manipulating his wife’s hand placing the needed signature on the document.  The $10,500 mortgage secured,  the couple purchasing all the furnishing except for one bedroom set, including the television, stove and refrigerator all for $250 plus another $250 for the relatively new 3/4 ton Carrier window air conditioner.  Gary and Kaye’s five months  residency with Deana coming to a close,  their new acquired residence was a blessing  because a new representative would soon enter the world to compensate the Willson ancestral history.

Former member of the NiteBeats Larry Burns

A consensus was made by many of the nocturnal private club patrons that the NiteBeats were considered one of the best versatile Oklahoma City five piece bands.   The combo having a well established sound, utilizing a B-3 Hammond organ, drums, bass, guitar and a tenor sax player doubling on alto and a Acker Bilk clarinet.   Their repertoire was similar to the Untouchables, catering to a mature audience, but where the Untouchables leaned toward country,  the NiteBeats contemplated modern jazz.   Larry Burns exhibiting an exceptional musical talent with the NiteBeats since the groups conception, but the contemporary maestro from Burns Flat Oklahoma was given his liberty by the group, no longer welcome on the bandstand.   The reason remained unanswered, Gary suspected a disagreement about the possibility of the NiteBeats going on the road may have contributed to it,  but their loss was the Untouchables gain, the band seizing upon Larry’s new status,  offering him posture with the group.   His accession to the combo,  bringing the additional  saxophone’s and clarinet gave the band greater instrumentation versatility,  Gary able to enhanced the arrangement capability and greatly expanding their repertoire and engagement prospects.

The Untouchables

The band was now ready to expand their sphere of music engagements, included in the formula was the acquisition of an agent and a venture into the realm of recording.   Gary and Glenn discovering a new association, Ruth Sallee the owner of Sallee Productions, a booking and talent referral agency.  The two finding Ruth’s North Shartel Ave office most entertaining,  the walls adorned with posters and pictures of various groups and artist,  especially the exotic dance performers, once referred to as vaudeville strippers.   Ruth,  in her fifties, was found to be very affable lady, astute in character, and very much aware of the music character of Oklahoma City and also of the Untouchables, willing to accept the group, drafting a concept to extend their recognition.

Staff Studio in the windowless upper-reaches of the Municipal Auditorium

Staff Studio in the windowless upper-reaches of the Municipal Auditorium

Staff Recording Studio was situated high atop the municipal auditorium in a windowless room on the southeast corner of the complex and was accomplished by owner and technician Larry Frazier.   Larry having wired the stage of the concert hall for recording, able to cataloging the audio of all performances of the symphony,  stage production and concert performers.   Staff studio was  compact in size but in addition to recording auditorium performances,  the studio recorded  piano recitals,  vocals,  providing musical background tapes and recording for funerals and weddings.  Another source of income for Larry was the audio monitoring of television and radio commercials for time consistency,  his result petitioned by the sponsors to verify they were getting what they paid for.  Unlike the two other studios in Oklahoma City which were endowed with a larger recording area and utilized eight and sixteen track recording capabilities,  Staff Studio’s size was limited to ample but advanced four track recorders.  Staff’s biggest asset was the pricing difference in recording cost, Gary’s optimism  was,  it’s wasn’t so much the studio size or the equipment as the caliber of music and performers.

Seeburg the Cadillac of Jukeboxes

Seeburg – the Cadillac of Jukeboxes

Gary and Glenn were amazed at the opportunities they discovered behind closed doors, the two having made the acquaintance of Keith Philips,  Oklahoma City’s Seeburg juke box and record distributor.  Keith’s business ventures and enterprises encompassing all of the Oklahoma City metro area and a good part of the state.  His behind the scene influence of the city’s night life abounded,  for the most part an unseen participant in the realm of  entertainment.  The two musicians discovering that Phillips had an ongoing interest in producing recordings,  his knowledge of the processing aspects, the actual pressing expenditure  distribution outlets bartered  him an insight that most sponsors advocating a recording never acquired.

Glenn and his Cadillac Limo addiction

The two continuing to explore all the avenues of entrance to the recording world including their own record label.   Glenn having become addicted to Cadillac Limousines, making another Oklahoma City acquaintances when soliciting for an over sized used Cadillac.   It was when Les Hoffman, the used car dealer asked the drummer about the his need for a limousine,  Glenn responding,  “to transport band equipment”,  then explaining about the band.    The dealer in return  volunteering,  he was the proprietor of Hit-Way Publishing Company and if there was ever a need for publishing or securing a copyright for a song or recording he would be more than happy to accommodate the band.   The two musicians amazed at the coincidences, but accepting the  visit to the car lot as just another card  dealt in the game of Nisus Formativus,  if effort was an indication of ambition,  success would be a measure of fruition.


Leave a 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.

%d bloggers like this: