January 26, 2007
The April issue went out the door at three yesterday and the Jeff Milton vs. The Burt Alvord Gang Classic Gunfights feature was uploaded to Banta in Kansas City at five. Whew! I was really hanging out on this one, but thanks to Meghan Saar, Mark Boardman, Robert Ray and Bob McCubbin, we got it locked down and it's a good one. Jeff Milton was an amazing guy and a movie really needs to be made of his exploits. He went up against John Selman, John Wesley Hardin and Blackjack Ketchum to name just a few. And, it is really cool to have a photo of Billy Stiles that has never been published before. It was attatched to a confidential Arizona Rangers' report which Bob McCubbin found somewhere (it's so amazing what he finds).
And speaking of Westerns, I played that promo for "The Magnificent Seven" at my speech in Wickenburg on Wednesday night. I was talking about Adapting to Change, and I asked my audience (all guest ranch owners) if they would consider playing hip-hop in their rooms. Groans and catcalls all around. I then walked over to the DVD player and hit play. Up came the promo that ran on the Westerns Channel that was produced by that 35-year-old kid I told you about. It was funked up, with an orange, distressed patina and had a hip-hop soundtrack. I was waiting for boos, or a hostile reaction but it surprised me that more than a few yelled out, "I like that!" Of course, I think most of the people in the room did not like it and were being quiet about it because they are curteous. However, I think I made the point that we have to adapt to change. I challenged them to tell me what kind of music is played at bull riding rodeos today, and of course the answer is AC/DC and Bachman-Turner Overdrive. Get ready, I told them, we have to adapt to changing times.
When I originally talked about the Seven promo, Steve Lodge commented that it wouldn't be a Western if it didn't have the appropriate music, and he also added that kids need to be taught proper history so they can appreciat "good Westerns." This prompted the following reply:
"Your comments about the loopy (my word) development of the Western movie— did cowboys break out in song? Gay caballeros? Johnnie Mack Brown? Lash LaRue? Did we whip the west, is that what happened? What's with all those sequins? whips and sequins, hmmm. whatever—were entirely accurate. no one would ever believe the history of the Western movie except that that's the way it happened. the West itself; another world. Then years later, they complain that we don't teach about the real West. Sorry, it's hard to ride a horse, poke cows, and play a guitar all at the same time. Tombstone, the musical, with Nathan Lane as Wyatt Earp and Billy Ray Cyrus as Doc Holliday."
The Best of 3,000
Late last year I spent an entire day in traffic school because of a ticket and I used the time to sketch my fellow prisoners. Here they are, sad and tired. Nice page of sketches really:
The Top Secret Project has much to do with the images on the following pages. And if you've been paying attention you should be able to identify every panel:
Beauty is attacked and Beauty defends herself with an ingenius weapon:
On the day of my 2,000th drawing I produced this sequence called "Lost Muertos" and it also involves the Top Secret Project:
Onion Headline de Jour
Dave Mathews Not That Into Himself Anymore
"When you find your mission, you will feel its demand. It will fill you with enthusiasm and a burning desire to get to work on it."
—W. Clement Stone
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