May 2019 We filled the Cottonwood Room!!!

Dameon drops right in, sits right down, daddy let your guitar do the talkin’.

What a turnout! There were about 30 people altogether, with 24 people toting guitars. Welcome to Dameon Noland (pictured above), Mike Bennett, Ben Zavorka, and Kristy Johnson. There were several others in attendance that did not get (or take) a crack at the signup sheet, HOWDEE to y’all as well!

T’was a very diverse and talented bunch, and the meeting moved right along. Kristy teamed up with Justin, adding lovely harmonies to Dolly Parton’s ‘Wildflowers’. Avery Janack was on fire, singing and playing tunes by the Red Hot Chili Peppers and Pink Floyd. Lots of folks offered sing or play-alongs, so it was a very lively meeting.

Avery belting out ‘Time’ by Pink Floyd

We had a group song, of sorts… Joe Larson brought us an 8 bar piece he worked up in class, with different parts written in tablature. We tried, honest, but it wasn’t pretty. It was however, an interesting diversion from the norm.

Also in attendance were Floyd Turner, Bill Bailey, Bob Fontaine, the aforementioned Mr. Zavorka, and some mystery guests.

Playlist for May 2019

Rich Ryan started us out with ‘Working at the Carwash Blues’ by Jim Croce

David Norby ‘Your Mother Should Know’, Lennon/McCartney

Ed Heffern, ‘Sweet Baby James’, James Taylor

Joshua Phillips, ‘Breaking the Girl’, Red Hot Chili Peppers

Watchin’ over Ernie

Ernie Brazzale, ‘Someone to Watch Over Me’, the Gershwin Brothers.

Remy Abeyta, ‘Snowbird’, Gene Maulelland

Dameon Noland, ‘Just a Riff I Came Up With’, original

Avery Janack, ‘This Velvet Glove’, Red Hot Chili Peppers

Earl Janack, ‘ It’s Us Bein’ We’, original

Earl with an original tune.

Roland Peterson, ‘Mazurca Choro’, Villa-Lobos

Steve Gilmore, ‘This is the Girl I Love’, Pete Gobles

Mike Bennett, ‘Country Roads’, John Denver

Mike invited us to play along, and steal his shoelaces.

Jeanie White, ‘Once in a Blue Moon’, Nancy Griffith

Nancy McKenzie (with Jeanie and Keith) ‘Paul and Peter Walked’, Claire Lynch

Keith Blaney, ‘Hot Air Balloon’, original

Justin and Kristy Johnson, ‘Wildflowers’, Dolly Parton

Kristy adding nice tight harmonies on ‘Wildflowers’.

Marvin Frerich, ‘Leavin’ on a Jet Plane’, John Denver

Edith Cook, ‘La Rossiguol’, anonymous

Gary Krause, ‘The Water Is Wide’, Jean Paul Cabrieres

Rich Ryan, ‘Mrs. Robinson’, Paul Simon

Coo Coo ca choo, Mr. Ryan! What’s that you say?

David Norby, ‘From This Valley’, The Civil Wars

Ed Heffern, ‘Star of the County Down’, traditional

Joshua Phillips, ‘Wish You Were Here’, Pink Floyd

Who dat? Hint: if I showed a picture of him holding his guitar, you would know in a heartbeat.

Remy Abeyta, ‘Since I Don’t Have You’, Jackie Taylor

Remy’s rig about the time of the previous photo. Had to show it, couldn’t just tease you…

Ernie Brazzale, ‘This Masquerade’, Leon Russell

Joe Larson, ‘Bosler’, Jalan Crossland

Dameon Noland, ‘Loose Noose’, original

Avery Janack, ‘Time’, Pink Floyd

Upcoming Stuff

Laramie County Library Music Contest.

We heard from Robin at the library, and the game is changing a bit. The big news is they are adding a fourth category, called ‘Other Stringed Instruments’ (but not piano) So if you play ukulele, mandolin, hammered dulcimer, etc, you too can take a crack at the $1000 first prize.

The other change is the second and third place prize money for each category has been raised by a couple hundred dollars each, to $700 and $500. The contest isn’t until August, so details will follow, but you might want to start dusting off your best lute tunes.

April’s meeting, no foolin’

What a turnout! We had 26-7 souls in the Cottonwood Room with around 20 of us packing instruments. Just like the actual meeting, our newsletter blurb this month starts out with a bit of business. A new president and board of directors were voted in. When Rich learned he was the new vice president/secretary, his jaw dropped. I tried to capture the moment with a photo, but he caught me at it and clammed up before the shutter winked.

A second sooner and I’da caught him with his pie hole open.

Everyone was on fire musically, with great performances all around the room. Remy did Hoagy Carmichael’s ‘Stardust’, and it was simply stunning. Justin took on Aerosmith’s ‘Dream On’, a tune that is both tough to play and sing, and knocked it out of the park.

There was collaboration all around the room; Edith and Russ, Bill and Remy, and Rich and Ken all did pieces together.

Cat Steven’s ‘Father and Son’, just not sure which is who

Jeanie White put together a quartet with members Rick, Nancy, and Keith. At first she called us “White Stone” then changed to it something Italian, “Some Spicy Meatballs”. However, we think “White Plastic Forks” should be our moniker. Band names are tough…

The White Plastic Meatballs? photo by Loni

Thanks to Scott for our group song this month, ‘Don’t Fence Me In’ by Cole Porter. It was fun! It was short, so we did it a couple times. Scott brought but one copy, and had the rest printed up right there at the library. So next month, be like Scott, bring us your group song!

Playlist for April 2019

Russ Williams and Edith Cook started us with a duet, ‘Sparkling Night’ by Kircher

Justin Johnson, ‘Dream On’, by Aerosmith

Locked and loaded with his tray in the upright position.

Christine Cousins ‘Hollywood Nights’ by Bob Seger

Gary Krause, ‘Grace’, original tune

Jeanie White, Keith Blaney, Rick Memmel, and Nancy McKenzie ‘Rockin’ with the Rhythm of the Rain’ by the Judds. ‘Let Me Be There’ by Olivia Newton John, ‘When I’m 64’ by Lennon/McCartney, ‘Lookin’ Out My Back Door’ by John Fogarty (CCR)

Dick Kinnison, ‘Skip a Rope’, by Henson Gargill

Remy and Bill teaming up.

Remy Abeyta & Bill Bailey, ‘Sweet Dreams’ by Don Gibson.

Earl Janack, ‘Goin’ to Be Goin’, original

Marvin Frerich, ‘Jamaican Farewell’, traditional

Joshua Phillips, ‘Lodi’, by Jeffrey Foneault

Rich Ryan & Ken Frederick, ‘Father and Son’, by Cat Stevens

Floyd Turner, ‘Sawin’ Logs’, original

Scott Mattson, ‘Edelweiß,’ Austrian folksong

Group, ‘Don’t Fence me In’, by Cole Porter

Edith Cook, Minuet in C, by Fernando Sor

Russ Williams, ‘Prelude for 1st Cello Suite’, by JS Bach

Justin Johnson, ‘Out of Love’, by Alessia Cara

Gary Krause, ‘Stand By Me’, J. Lieber/ Ben E. King

He sang ‘Stand By Me’, so we did.

Christine Cousins, ‘Turquoise Star’, original

Keith Blaney & Jeanie White, ‘A Summer Song’, by Chad & Jeremy

Dick Kinnison, ‘Okie From Muskogee’, by M. Haggard/E. Burris

Also joining us this month were Cathy Memmel, Henry Kinnison, Loni Cox, Mike Bennett, and Floyd Turner.

March 2019 meeting

Be forewarned! I intend to lie more than usual in this episode of the CGS newsletter. So get out your hip boots and B.S. detectors, you’re going to need them.

Twenty stalwarts attended our March gathering in the library’s Sunflower Room. Christine Cousins was back after a long absence. She was competing in the Great American Baking Show & Chili Shoot-Out in Branson, MO. Her chili cheese cake muffins were a crowd favorite.

Christine’s giant pick was really a tortilla chip with red dye #4

Bill Bailey brought an instrument we haven’t seen him drag out in awhile, a tri-cone resonator guitar (commonly referred to as a National guitar). It’s like calling a tissue a Kleenex; Bill assured us this instrument was not made by National OR Kleenex, though he could not tell us exactly who made it.

Bill’s guitar sounded like a 1920’s radio program

Steve Gilmore will be on a working vacation next month, his band High Plains Tradition will be working the pubs and alleys in Ireland for a few weeks. Meanwhile, his son Martin will make a trip up to Cheyenne with his trio on the 29th of March, for a free concert at the Laramie County Library. Martin’s been writing some new songs lately and he’s pretty good at it. When I’m sure about the time of the show, I’ll ping you all again with the details.

Joe Larsen in the foreground; that’s our 6’5″ leprechaun Steve strumming his six string.

Group song was an impromptu version of the Eagles ‘Peaceful Easy Feeling’. It went so-so, which is pretty good given the circumstances.

One last tidbit before we move on to the playlist. Here’s an absolutely stunning picture of Bob Seger at a recent concert here along the front range. He’s waving and saying thank you to one of our mandolin players who wishes to remain anonymous. I don’t know if she sat in for a song or opened for Bob or what, but she managed to snap this picture on stage just before he came over and gave her a big hug.

Photo by Nancy McKenzie. What a shot!

Playlist for March 2019

Keith Blaney, ‘Harvest Moon’ by Neil Young

Joe Larsen, ‘Balalaika Tune’ original

Steve Gilmore, ‘Standing on the Outside’ by Leo Kottke

Earl Janack, ‘It’s Us Bein’ We’, original

Ernie Brazzale, ‘This Masquerade’, by Leon Russell

Bill Bailey, ‘Coney Island Cakewalk’, unknown

Ken working that neck, surrounded by fans, as usual.

Ken Frederick, ‘Super Moon’, original

Nancy McKenzie, ‘Will You Walk With Me’, Anne & Pete Sibley

Christine Cousins, ‘Emerald Clover’, original

Ed Heffern, ‘Shake Sugaree’, Elizabeth Cotten, arranged by Rhiannon Giddens.

Ed doin’ some fine finger pickin’.

Rich Ryan, ‘The Wind Cries Mary’, by Jimi Hendrix

Marvin Frerich, ‘Jamaican Farewell’ traditional

Joshua Phillips, ‘Fire Away’, by Chris Stapleton

Joshua’s guitar knows more songs than I do.

David Norby, ‘You’ll Never Leave Harlan Alive’, by Darrell Scott

Keith Blaney, ‘Country Road’, by James Taylor

Joe Larsen, ‘Kalinka’, by someone in Russia

Group, ‘Peaceful Easy Feeling’ by Doug Frye

Earl playing another smash hit original tune

Earl Janack, ‘Amalgamated Conglomeration Inc.’ original.

Ernie Brazzale, ‘And the Ewe’, by Horn E. Ram. That is not what he played, but it is what he wrote.

Bill Bailey, ‘Stagger Lee’, by Mississippi John Hurt

Ken Frederick, ‘Cancion De Pasta Primavera’, original

Marvin Frerich, ‘Blowin’ in the Wind’, by Bob Dylan

Marvin blowin’ some wind of his own

Ed Heffern, ‘Lemon Tree’, by Peter, Paul, and Mary

Rich Ryan, ‘Can’t Find My Way Home,’ by Steve Winwood.

Nancy McKenzie, ‘Back to the Cross’, gospel traditional

Christine Cousins, ‘Smooth’, by Santana featuring Rob Thomas.

Joshua Phillips, ‘Interstate Love Song’, by Stone Temple Pilots

David Norby, ‘It’s Too Late’, by Carole King

February 2019 Meeting

We were, you guessed it, back up in the Sunflower Room at the library for our February meeting. Welcome to Joshua Phillips and his very lovely Gibson guitar. He did it justice with a couple covers of Pearl Jam and Stone Temple Pilots tunes.

This is Joshua, but who’s the little guy peeking out from behind the guitar?

Our new dad, Martin Gilmore, ventured up from Denver to join us, but unfortunately only had time to play one tune. Lucky for us, he teamed up with his dad Steve for another one.

Steve and Martin Gilmore getting after Tim O’Brien’s ‘Heartbreak Game.’

We also got a nice presentation from Dorothy and Glen Gould about the Cheyenne Concert Association Series. A season pass is only $65 and gets you into about 18 different shows from Kimball to Cheyenne to Ft. Collins and beyond, with performances by some of the top musicians in the world. This season is about half way done, but you could still get more than your money’s worth.

Ed Heffern trying out his new music stand, who he calls Bob. We all call him Bob. That’s Bob.

The group song was- WAIT– there was no group song! Y’all need to step up for this little chore! It’s simple. Step 1. Pick out something fairly easy and familiar (without too many barr chords) Step 2. Make about ten copies for everybody to share. Step 3. Stick those copies in your guitar case. Step 4. Bring those copies to the meeting! We may not get to it right away, because I know the response to this call to action is going to be overwhelming. Trust me though, we will get around to your tune, because we all love a group song. Shoot, that’s why several of us bring an instrument, just to play along with the group. Oh, there’s one additional step for Russ, Step 1 1/2. Have someone show you how to chart chords right side up. Just kidding, upside down has its merits as well…

Playlist for February 2019

Earl Januck started us out with an original tune, “It’s Not Me, It’s You”

Ernie Brazzale ‘The Boxer’ by Paul Simon

Keith Blaney ‘Crazy Love’ by Van Morrison

David Norby ‘Running on Empty’ by Jackson Browne

When David Norby brings a tune, you can bet it’s one you haven’t heard in awhile.

Steve Gilmore ‘Bristlecone Pine’ by Hugh Prestwood

Justin Johnson ‘Desperado’ by Eagles

Edith Cook ‘Cool Water’ by Bob Nolan

You may not see it from this angle, but Edith is wearing a 10 gallon hat for her rendition of Bob Nolan’s cowboy classic, ‘Cool Water’.

Ed Heffern, ‘Ashokan Farewell’ by Jay Unger

Roland Peterson, ‘Opus 60 No. 3’ by Carrassi (on classical guitar)

Joshua Phillips, ‘Black’ by Pearl Jam

Marvin Frerich, ‘Jamaican Fairwell’, mento (folk song)

Marvin had a birthday recently, I think he turned 39 again.

Martin Gilmore, ‘Buffalo Skinners’ traditional

Keith Blaney, ‘When I’m 64’ by Lennon/McCartney

Earl Januck, ‘I’m Here for the Beer’ original.

Joe Larson, ‘Love’ by Frank Sinatra

Ernie Brazzale trying out his musical braces while Floyd Turner watches on through his eyelids.

Ernie Brazzale, ‘Take Me As I Am’ by Thompson & Battle.

David Norby, ‘Big Yellow Taxi’ by Joni Mitchell

Steve and Martin Gilmore, ‘Heartbreak Game’ by Time O’Brien

Justin Johnson, ‘I’m Yours’ by Jason Mraz

Justin uses the whole neck. Both of them.

Ed Heffern, ‘Jerusalem’s Choir’ by Kane’s River

Roland Peterson, ‘Red Haired Boy’ on mandolin (traditional)

Joshua Phillips, ‘Big Empty’ by Stone Temple Pilots

Also joining us; Floyd Turner, Bob Fontaine, Bill Bailey, and Glen and Dorothy Gould.

Please note: I took some liberties with the playlist order to best use the photos that were fit to print. That’ll be my M.O. going forward with this new format.

January’s meeting

Since the 1st Tuesday of the month also fell on the first day of the new year, we had to postpone until the 8th. Only two poor souls showed up for the earlier date, and quite nearly froze their knickers off waiting outside for the week to pass.

The meeting was fairly well attended; by the time everyone had trickled in we had over two dozen attendees. Welcome to Nancy White and Joshua Phillips. Nancy did some noodling that she normally reserves for the sofa, and discovered it is much harder in a chair in a room full of chairs full of other geetar pickers. We hear ya… She then passed her guitar to Joshua, who did a mighty fine job of a Pink Floyd tune. It takes guts to play for strangers, and you both did great!

Here’s Nancy working on the group song with her patent pending music stand.


Joe Larson showed up with an instrument he got for Christmas that looked like a giant guitar pick with a neck. It’s a Russian balalaika; two strings tuned the same and a third string tuned to a fourth higher. Joe already figured out enough to hit a few licks on it for us. Roland Peterson was also sporting a different ax than usual, a mandolin, instead of his standard issue classical guitar.

Group song was Bill Hailey’s ‘Rock Around The Clock’. I took the opportunity to take some photos during the group song, rather than interupting individual performances. You may notice more people mugging for the camera than usual; that is why!

Playlist for January

Ken Frederick, ‘Kissing in the Wind’, an original tune. Ernie Brazzale, ‘Blue Shadows’, B. Hade and L. Alter Roland Peterson, ‘Blackberry Blossom’, traditional Earl Janack, ‘Time After Time,’ an original tune. Bill Bailey, ‘Don’t Let the Sun Catch You Crying’, Gary and The Pacemakers.

Bill with his steel pedal and Loni.

Gary Krause, ‘Guardian Angels & Spirit Guides,’ original. Edith Cook, ‘Audenhus in G,’ anonymous Nancy White, ‘Sofa Noodles’, original Joshua Phillips, ‘Time’, Pink Floyd Joe Larsen, ‘Kalinka, ‘ unknown Rich Ryan, ‘Nashville Cats’, John Sebastian

Marvin taking us on a Jamaican cruise.

Marvin Frerich, ‘Jamaican Farewell’, unknown Justin Johnson, ‘Lady May,’ Tyler Childs Steve Gilmore, ‘Hold to a Dream’, Tim O’Brien Keith B., ‘Put Your Records On’, Corrinne Bailey Rae Nancy McKenzie, Jeannie White, Keith Blaney, Rick Memmel, ‘Shine’, Ed Roland (Collective Soul) Group Song ‘Rock Around the Clock’, Bill Hailey and the Comets

Nancy flirting with the camera

Ken Frederick, ‘New Year’s Day’, original Ernie Brazzale, ‘Jazz Improv in C’, original

Rich Ryan with his much loved Dunlop pick

Roland Peterson, ‘Study in Am’, Guiliani Earl Janack, ‘It’s Fallin’ , original Bill Bailey, ‘You’re Something Special to Me’, George Strait Rich Ryan, ‘Time In a Bottle’, Jim Croce

Come for the Cookies, Stay for the Music

Our meeting on the 4th was well attended, with one noticeable exception; Steve Gilmore was off having a grand baby!  Bridger Augustus Gilmore was born December 2nd.  We heard he can already Travis pick, and cries when he sees a banjo player, so he’s off to a good start.  Steve is recovering nicely.  An Honorable Mention goes out to Stacey and Martin, parents of young Bridger.  Best of health to all.This is Jason, who heard a song, decided he liked it, listened to it a million times, learned it, then presented it at the meeting.  All this happened on the same day.  We had a couple people apologizing for not having Christmas tunes to offer (Jason was one of these apologetic types)  All I can say is don’t be silly, the diversity is what makes us tick, what makes us unique, what makes us CHEYENNE Guitar Society.

Pete came up from Ft. Collins,  always a treat to see and hear Pete!  Remy brought his ‘music machine’ which consists of Remy, a Gibson guitar, a Fender Blues Jr., and a backing track in which Remy laid down all the different instruments.  He makes it look easy, but it is tricky to pull off as smoothly as he does.   We had collaboration all around the room, many of them involving Rick Memmel on both guitar and bass.  Here’s Bob Fontaine teaming up with Ed Heffern; we didn’t even know Bob played his fingernails (there’s a harp hiding in there somewhere)   Edith brought cookies, I think somebody even ate the tin.  Group song was Jingle Bells, and trust me, we jangled all the way!

PLAYLIST    i think

Edith Cook and Russ Williams   In the Hall of the Mountain King, by Edvard Grieg

Randy Busler, A Boy Named Sue,  by Johnie Cash

Pete Piotrowski, Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen, traditional

Rich Ryan, You’re a Mean One, Mr. Grinch,  ???

Ed Heffern and Bob Fontaine, Jingle Bell Rock, Bobby Helms

Rick Memmel and Ed Heffern, Noel (Christmas Dinner) by Paul Stookey

Rick Memmel and Ernie Brazzale, Please Come Home for Christmas, by Brown

Rick, Jeannie White, Keith Blaney, and Nancy McKenzie, I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas, by Galya Peevey

Just Jeannie wants the hippo

Keith Blaney,  The Christmas Song, by M. Torme and G. Wells

Jeannie White, Mary Did You Know?, by Mark Lowry and Buddy Greene

Gary Krause with Nancy McKenzie, It’s Christmas, original by Gary

Justin Johnson, The Fork, an original tune.

Earl Janack, The Streets of Laredo METV theme song, ???

Remy Abeyta, Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas, by James Pierpont

Edith Cook, Vals/Piece Juhine by Calatayud/Papanini

Russ Williams, Let It Snow, Let It Snow, by Cahn & Styne

Pete Piotrowski, The Twister (Floyd’s Twister), by Dan Lebowitz

Rich Ryan, Tennessee Christmas, by Gary Chapman/Amy Grant

Bob Fontaine & Ed Heffern, Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer, traditional

Ernie Brazzale, Away in A Manger, traditional

Jeannie, Nancy, Rick and Keith, Come and See What’s Happening in the Barn, by The Gaither Vocal Band

Keith Blaney, Merry Christmas From the Family, by Robert Earl Keene

Jeannie, Rick, Nancy, and Keith, LeRoy the Redneck Reindeer, by Joe Diffe

Justin Johnson, Feathered Indians, by Tyler Childers

Earl Janack, Can’t Wrap My Head Around It, original

Remy Abeyta, Silent Night, Franz Gruber

Also joining us were Bill Bailey, the Floyd Turner, Judy Heffern, and Cathy Memmel.