Friday, July 8, 2011

Bob Wills Swings Through Vallejo

On this day in 1945 Western Swing great Bob Wills, accompanied by his Texas Playboys, played two shows in Vallejo. During the afternoon the band played for more than 15,000 people at a huge Oklahoma-Texas-Arkansas picnic at Blue Rock Springs park. Many of the southwestern transplants attending the picnic had come to Vallejo at the outset of World War Two to work at the Mare Island Shipyard. The Texas Playboys performed a second show that evening at the Casino Ballroom in Vallejo.

Although dozens of different musicians passed through Wills' band over the years, the line-up in the mid '40s included Wills on fiddle, Everett Stover (trumpet), Less Anderson (steel guitar), Tiny Mott (saxophone), Louis Tierney (fiddle), Monte Mountjoy (drums), Rip Ramsey (bass), Jimmy Wyble (guitar), Tommy Duncan (vocals), Cameron Hill (guitar), Millard Kelso (piano), and Laura Lee Owens (vocals). That is the line-up pictured above, in a photograph taken in Los Angeles in 1944.


  1. As an older art collector since my wife passed away, I must admit to being very partial to collecting nudes in art, as original paintings or as good prints, that I have displayed all over the house. (I like to see the surprised faces of my new visitors).
    This one,, by Emile Munier, is hanging in one corner of my bedroom and was printed by, where I am a very good customer.