Louis Armstrong Quotes

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Musicians don’t retire; they stop when there’s no more music in them.

A lotta cats copy the Mona Lisa, but people still line up to see the original.

Louis Armstrong (1901-1971) was a American musician.  As a trumpeter and vocalist, his contributions influenced the evolution of American jazz.  Appropriately, he was born in the city of New Orleans.

Behind the Scenes–Act 5

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Welcome to “Behind the Scenes.”  Today, we have returned to visit with Richard, the creative voice behind the writing journey of Big Sky Buckeye. 

Welcome back Richard.  It is a pleasure visit with you again. 

You have mentioned previously that your first years of teaching took place at Plevna High School, which is located in a small farming and ranching community in southeastern Montana.

Yes, I moved to Plevna for the 1978-1979 school year.  Today, I would like to shine the spotlight on two of my high school students.

Both of these gentlemen graduated in 1980.  While their lives shared some commonalities, they each had far different backgrounds.

Paul Neumann and Loyd Ketchum played on the boys basketball team.  As starting guards, they helped to lead the Plevna Cougars to a district tournament championship.  Their team’s efforts earned the school’s first title in nearly 20 years.  While Paul’s gifted touch allowed him to be the playmaker, Loyd was recognized for his hard-nose defensive play. 

Paul was a town kid.  His father ran a service station along the highway, and his mother operated a beauty salon.  Paul’s musical talents were extraordinary as he played keyboard and trumpet. 

Loyd grew up on a ranch outside of town.  His parents raised beef cattle and quarter horses.  His mother was an accomplished rodeo barrel racer. 

Paul had always dreamed of becoming a member of a rock band.  While many in the town were not too sure about his career choice, Paul would persevere and see his dream bear fruit.

In 1986, Paul (using his professional name of Paul Daniels) was a founding member of the heavy metal band, Rox Diamond.  Paul played keyboard and served as one of the band’s vocalists.  Paul’s band would remain active well into the 2000s.

Loyd was destined to find success on the rodeo circuit.  He became a world champion bullfighter in professional rodeo.  Sometimes called rodeo clowns because of their colorful attire, these men were gifted athletes who looked out for cowboys when they were bucked off of a brahma bull.

Loyd’s skills were evident for several years on both the PRCA and PBR circuits.  His efforts were best described with this phrase, “Bullfighting with class and finesse.”

Sitting here thinking of these two men and their hopes and dreams, they each made a name for themselves as well as making the community of Plevna proud.

We have appreciated spending time with Richard from Big Sky Buckeye.  Look for more “Behind the Scenes” in future postings.

Here is a recent recording from Rox Diamond (dated 2018).  If you are a fan of heavy metal music, this might interest you to listen in.

Here’s a short video clip of bullfighters Loyd Ketchum and Justin Hawks from 1997.  Look out Loyd, here comes Georgie Porgie!

Life Sketches (Haiku Series #197)

Dropping Out

Living off the grid

Not even Google will find—

Modern mountain man

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Glass Slipper Fits

College football’s quest

Cinderella comes knocking—

Another upset!

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Marvelous music

Keyboard’s personality—

Piano man’s hands

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Bob Marley Quotes

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One good thing about music, when it hits you, you feel no pain.

Don’t gain the world and lose your soul; wisdom is better than silver and gold.

Bob Marley (1945-1981) was a Jamaican-born singer, songwriter, and musician.  His unique and pioneering musical talents shared many inspiring songs.

Nature’s Deployment (Haiku Series #153)

Every Day

Sunrise sends greeting

Creator’s hand wakens day—

Glorious morning

Morning sunrise over the Choptank River along Maryland’s Eastern Shore.

Echoing Cadence

Soul-filled percussion

Pulsating afternoon sky–

Thunder’s rhythmic beat

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Still Here

Hot days continue

Waiting for autumn colors—

Summer must insist

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Satisfying Moments (Elfchen Series #38)



Needing ambition

Starting day’s engines

Fueled for another shift


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Sugar Explosion


Sweet treats

Glazed or sugared

Some filled with sweetness


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Artists singing

Streaming endless tunes

Thoughts lost in melody


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This series of poems (written in the German-inspired style of Elfchen or Elevenie) shares a total of eleven words in each poem, with a sequence by line of one, two, three, four, and one words.

Melody in the Woods

bright daylight environment forest

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Music permeates through the woods

Listen closely, can you hear it?

This melody brings a sense of calm

Nature witnesses a new hit


Calmness radiates from a banjo

Listen again, can you feel it?

Life pauses, taking in this song

Appreciate this moment, let’s sit


Even in darker times, comes light

Listen now, can you feel its blitz?

Calming tune filling every heart

Playing a banjo, without the glitz


People reaching out to others

Living as sisters and brothers


Steve Martin is an accomplished banjo player, and he shares a message of calmness and peace from the woods with his own self-video performance.   This video inspired the writing of this poem.

Down the Highway

gray pavement road towards mountains

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Music takes many of us on a magical ride

Thoughts and images to carry by our side

A son needs to locate a way to the other side

A bridge over troubled water keeps him alive

A father educates his son to construct a better life

Carry on my wayward son without any more strife

Getting hitched and then catching a bus

We see a rich life making memories of us

The hills come alive with a musical song

How can Sister Maria never be wrong?

Drove a Chevy to the levee one day to sing

But the music died, only memories will ring

Georgy Girl walking down the street

He’ll never find another you as sweet

Heading to work with a mind slow to start

Takin’ care of business energizes his heart

Country roads, please take me home

For she is weary of feeling so alone

Her life fills with major worries, without abundant light

But she can always go downtown on any given night

The tense, western movie ends with a gunfight

With a big iron on his hip, he shows his might

We travel down an unfamiliar highway at last

“Do you know the way to San Jose? we ask

Sometimes life wants to take off and run away

Let’s all continue to roll on down the highway

The inspiration for this poem came from Bachman-Turner Overdrive’s 1975 classic rock hit, “Roll On Down the Highway.”  I was crushing some carbs while working out on my stationary bike, and I was listening to some songs from BTO. I decided to try to use parts of various song lyrics in a poem.

Did you find any familiar lyrics in the poem?  What are some of your favorite song lyrics?