Tag Archives: Austin

Is There a Place Like Home?

7 Oct

This weekend, we were tailgating with some friends before the Tennessee Titans game, which turned out to be historic for all of the wrong reasons. Anyway, the conversation turned toward moving. One of them said that she would like to move somewhere else, but that her boyfriend would never leave town. My wife, who has lived in different parts of the country, said that she knew when we married that we would live here forever.

I said that I have been lucky enough to have traveled in every state and have spent time in most of the major cities. I love visiting them, but I have never seen anywhere that is a better place to live than right here in my hometown. They both looked at me funny and said that other places have culture, art and different lifestyles. That is when I said that is true, but they are missing one thing. They are not home.Tennessee

I understand that a lot of people have to move for jobs and other reasons. Some people move because they hate where they grew up. Heck, there are people from my graduating class who left the day after the ceremony and have never been back. However, I have always thought it important to have roots and contribute to the place that made us who we are. It is a place of family and old friends. Like I said, it is home.

All that being said, the conversation made me think of an assignment that my therapist had me complete. I had to list ten places, other than here, where I would like to live. I remember most of the list, and I know that it would be slightly different if I did it today. That is why I am going to do it today. If I was going to live somewhere else, then it would be, in no particular order, the following:

Santa Fe, New Mexico

Durango, Colorado

Sonoma, California

Asheville, North Carolina

Maryville, Tennessee

Austin, Texas

Prescott, Arizona

Waialua, Hawaii

What do those places have in common?

I have spent time in each one and thought they were worth more than a visit. They struck me as good places to live. Some of them have rich culture, and others are just good towns.

None of them are huge cities where the buildings block out the sun. They have that small town feel with a little extra thrown in.

They all have great things around them. It would not take long to find a good hike or a another cool place to visit.

Will we ever move? You never know what the future holds. However, if it was going to be one of these places, then it would make the decision somewhat easier.

 

 

Finding Bobby Doyle

25 Aug

A few years ago, I saw a documentary about Hugh Hefner and was stunned by a man singing the best rendition of “Blowin’ in the Wind” that I have ever heard. Immediately, I went searching for that song to download on my iPod. I could not find the song, but, more strikingly, I could not find anything about the man, Bobby Doyle.

This sent me on an Internet search to find all I could about him. I wrote about it in a post called “Searching for Bobby Doyle” and hoped that some day his music would become available. Apparently, I was not the only one because comments began to appear from people who were also searching for him. They had also seen the documentary and were trying to find out about the man with the haunting voice.

It was good to know that other people were interested in Bobby’s music, but I was stunned when an old friend and band mate of his left a comment. Through emails, he has told me about Bobby and his life singing in the bars of Austin, Texas. He has told me stories about the struggles of being a musician who was good enough to make it big but never got that big chance. Through his emails, I have learned more about Bobby than I could ever imagine. I have learned a lot, but there is one thing that I know for sure. I wish I could have sat in an Austin bar and listened to Bobby perform. If I was lucky, then he would come over after his set and tell stories about his life and times.

Through Bobby’s friend, I found out that a writer was doing a story on Bobby. When the story was published, the writer sent a link to me, and it is exactly what I was looking for from the beginning. It is a great story that chronicles to life of a man who I wish I could have met. I urge you to read it.

Bobby’s friend also told me about something that was happening close to my home. The Country Music Hall of Fame inducted Kenny Rogers in its latest class and planned an exhibit in his honor. I knew from my early research that Kenny Rogers got his start in the Bobby Doyle Three. Apparently, his time with the trio would be part of the exhibit.

This morning, my wife and I had brunch in Nashville and went to the exhibit. As soon as we entered the room, there was a wall dedicated to the Bobby Doyle Three.image

As I read the information and looked at the pictures, a knot formed in my throat. It may sound strange, but I was getting emotional. A man who played in bars throughout Austin and never made it big was being introduced to people at the Country Music Hall of Fame.image-6

As we went through the rest of the exhibit, I kept looking to see if people were reading about Bobby. They were doing more than that. They were checking out his pictures and his album covers.image-4 Hopefully, some of them will walk out and look for his music.

Unfortunately, Bobby’s music remains a rare find. A couple of songs are on iTunes, but most of it cannot be easily found. Today, I am more convinced than ever that his music needs to be out there for people to hear. If nothing else, then his version of “Blowin’ in the Wind” should be available. I promise that it is the best rendition that you will ever hear.

As we walked out of the exhibit, I glanced one more time at Bobby’s wall and thought, “Bobby, you finally made it.” I wish I had known him. I wish that I had heard him live. I wish he was still here to know that people are finding him.