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Post new topic Dave Burley's Cavalcade Of Guitars/From Horses M
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Author Topic:  Dave Burley's Cavalcade Of Guitars/From Horses M
Dave A. Burley


Franklin, In. USA
Post  Posted 23 Jan 2003 10:18 pm    
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In response to some of Jeff Agnews quistions............Concerning the recordings in Nashville, Tenn. titled 'It's The First Time' and the recording at Deweys Long Horn Ball Room in Dallas, Texas.
I love the steel guitar and in the mid seventies I decided to try to promote the instrument to a larger audience.
All pickers seemed to really like the jams with more than one steel the best.
I had a concept of putting several of the best steel guitarist in the country in one room and record a jam session.
That is what we did.
I contacted Jimmy Bryant and asked if he would help me arrange the recording. He did and without his help we would not have been able to do it.
At this moment, the original album is being remixed and, hopefully, we will have some CD's when the Michigan steel guitar show comes along.
Many, many stories concerning both of these recordings.
The one in Dallas was recorded live, featuring two different segments with all the musicians on the stage at the same time for a jam.
Each artist also did 15 minute individual shows which were also recorded.
I had a nice contract with United Artists out of California. The album was to be released as a top line album, made available at all music stores throughout the world.
What happened?
Every artist agreed, beforehand, to appear for a set amount and also agreed to record for another set amount.
When I contacted Les Paul and inquired as to the recording, his words to me were: 'Whatever the other fellows agree to is fine with me.'
After a years plus work, a couple years off of my life, a wonderful concert that those in attendance will never forget......
After the fact........Les Paul reniged on his earlier agreement and had his attorney send me a letter stating that Les wanted 12% of the retail royalties.......My contract with United Artist's called for only 7 1/2 % of the retail sales. I would have to pay Les out of my pocket for every sale.
Les would not budge an inch so after a year, fighting Les with my attorneys and paying the musicians for their appearances fees, it was impossible to release the album because of lack of funds to pay the artists their recording fees and Les's refusal to sign a release.
It was such a big shame......
Finally, an album that would be released worldwide promoting the steel guitar artists jamming with the best jazz guitarists in the world.
I had an agent in NY, Lou Levy, one of the Andrews Sisters husbands, who was handling some great things for us.
The concert, Dave Burley's Cavalcade Of Guitars, had a possibility of playing, as a unit, at the London Paladium, Carnegie Hall and even Hee Haw.
Les Paul put the monkey wrench in all of that.
I also concieved recording a set of albums featuring one steel guitar player and one of the jazz guitarists.
The only one of those albums that were finally produced from that original concept was the Doug Jernigan and Bucky Pizzarelli album.
It would have been a great day for the steel guitar.
A book could be written about the hardships that I endured to produce both the first album and the concert in Dallas.
Someday I might tell you some unbelievable stories.
During this time, I also had a dream of taking steel guitarists on the road and having six hour jam sessions and individual performances throughout the country.
This did happen, starting in 1975 and Scotty tells me that these jam sessions were the forerunner of what we have today, the concept of having several steel guitarists perform on the same day at various clubs throughout the country.
The first session was in Muskegon, Michigan at the Ramada Inn featuring Jimmy Bryant and Julian Tharpe. That was in 1975.
After that, I decided to use three to four steel guitarists at each session in different cities. Muskegon, Grand Rapids, Kalamazoo, Ft. Wayne, Marion, Dallas, TX..San Antonio, Texas and many other places.
Jimmy Bryant helped pave the way with his great talent encouraging Buddy, Doug, Maurice, Curly and Julian to be part of it all.
I had lot's of dreams, but, I was dreaming too fast and my big dreams didn't have the financial backing.
The concert in Dallas, Texas was very expensive.
How I survied that couple years, I don't know. I guess that the good Lord was looking after me.
I still have the tapes from that session in DAllas. The jam session with all on stage and also the individual sessions by each artist. Because of the fact that it was just me doing all the promo, running up and down the road, and producing the concert, the final product is not like what you would get in a studion, but, it is good.
Maybe someday I will have those tapes mixed with todays equipment and release a compilation of that day in November, 1976 in Dallas, Texas.
I would probably be sued by Les Paul, but, they say the best promotion for a project is to get sued.
Seriously, I do hope to find a good studio this year to begin mastering the tapes that I have and I will release them on CD.
I still have the agreement with the musicians that were there in Dallas and I will honor that agreement if I can make the arrangements to have the tapes mixed.
Thanks for your interest in this project from 1976.
If anyone would like to hear anthing more about the concert from the 'horses mouth,' feel free to email me.
And now for page two....
Dave Burley
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Ron Whitfield


Kaaawa, Hawaii, USA
Post  Posted 23 Jan 2003 11:00 pm    
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YES!! Dave, you are a music lovers hero! What a Herculean effort. That shows what can be accomplished with total love and desire, and all for our enjoyment(not to mention the historical aspect). If nothing else, please continue telling the stories. I sure hope Les has better things to do than continue being a stick in the mud, I always thot he was a bigger man than that. I knew he never was big on the steel, but jeez(even HeeHaw), sounds like he could of stood some lessons in life from you and Mr. Bryant. Best of luck in your ventures to realizing those dreams, now 30 yrs. later. You sure have me dreaming of what may yet be. Endless thanx!

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Ron Whitfield


Kaaawa, Hawaii, USA
Post  Posted 28 Jan 2003 9:49 pm    
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I'm stumpt as to why this has not gotten a bunch of responses, sure sounded great to me. Head on Dave!

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Susan Alcorn

Baltimore, MD, USA
Post  Posted 12 Feb 2020 2:07 pm    
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It's an indispensable document of pedal steel guitar history as well as a great record.

"So this is how you swim inward. So this is how you flow outwards. So this is how you pray."
- Mary Oliver
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Bob Watson

Champaign, Illinois, U.S.
Post  Posted 12 Feb 2020 2:44 pm    
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It is a great recording, I would have loved to have been there. I'm glad it finally got released and I hope Dave A. Burley came out of this OK financially speaking. Its sad that LP put a "monkey wrench" in the release of the project. It's the only negative thing I've ever heard about him.

Last edited by Bob Watson on 13 Feb 2020 11:33 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Jack Stanton


Somewhere in the swamps of Jersey
Post  Posted 13 Feb 2020 9:13 pm    
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Hi used to have this CD, and lost itin the car ithat it burned up… Is it still available anywhere?
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Bill Cunningham

Atlanta, Ga. USA
Post  Posted 15 Feb 2020 5:59 am    
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Jernigan had them on his table at a show last year. You might inquire on his web site or email digindoug46@yahoo.com.
Bill Cunningham
Atlanta, GA
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Craig Stock

Westfield, NJ USA
Post  Posted 15 Feb 2020 8:39 am    
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Jack, I have a copy I can send you if you'd like.
Regards, Craig

I cried because I had no shoes, then I met a man who had no feet.
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