Travis Edmonson is asking anyone who might have memorabilia from his career to help out with the documentary Bill McCune of McCune Television is making about him. Travis would like those who have ticket stubs, playbills, photographs (Travis alone, Bud & Travis, Travis with other celebrities, Travis with fans), ads, reviews or any other graphic material to make it available in the form of scans emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org. Should you have trouble reaching that address, just click the contact button at the left, and we'll get you in touch with Bonnie Brock who is assisting Bill McCune with assembly of visuals for the film which is due for completion some time in 2007.
Most welcome of all would be video footage, which is in scant supply. Many thanks to all searching their collections to assist!
At the opening of 2006, there are many new and exciting projects surrounding Travis Edmonson, not the least being the making of a documentary about him. The first scenes were shot over the Thanksgiving Weekend 2005, and Frank Ross, who was among the musicians on hand for the occasion, gives his inside perspective on the event.
“About 4 days before the documentary session was to take place, Oscar Cisneros (who has played with the Kingston Trio as a member), and who had seen me appearing with Travis at the El Encanto Park concert in Phoenix in March 2004, called me and told me that a documentary was going to be filmed and that he wanted me to be up there with a number of fine musicians that had known Travis through the years.
It was going to be a surprise, and was to take place the day after Thanksgiving, November 25, 2005 and it would be at Travis' home in Mesa. I was, of course , thrilled, and accepted the offer immediately.
So, on that Friday , about 30 musicians and friends gathered, ranging from a couple of present-day members of The Kingston Trio, a present day Limelighter, and a couple of New Christy Minstrels, all from the 60's folk era, and all there to pay tribute to this folk singer whom we loved and had influenced so many of us. I was in distinguished company.
At 12 noon we all filed in one-by-one through the back door that led to the living room where Travis was conducting an interview . We were all carting our instruments, and briefly greeted Travis as we walked through the living room. (We were not to stop and chat, but just keep going on to the back patio.)
Two cameras were there to record the event. We tuned our instruments, and began rehearsing some of Travis' songs that we knew we were going to sing . The producer, Bill McCune had handed us, in loose order, some of the songs sung by Bud and Travis . We had already been told a few days prior which ones we were going to sing , and with whom . But there was also an element of spontaneity which would allow additional songs , and different people playing on different songs.
The atmosphere was cordial and fun-loving . No egos clashing , as far as I could tell. Each of us got to stand in front of this big recording microphone and the two cameras in Travis' back patio. One of the cameras was fixed, the other mobile.
The music began with a medley of some of Travis' songs, and we were to sing for about a minute and end at an appropriate, logical place. I got to sing a beautiful Mexican bolero which I have known most of my life called "Sin Ti. " Later I joined Travis' daughter, Ellen - whom I had just met that morning -in a rendition of "Rayito de Luna," another great bolero. Then later , by myself , I played "El Abandonado."
Both friends and musicians were all very supportive. When I finished "Él Abandonado," Travis - who basically sat in his wheelchair throughout the whole concert - just taking in all these different, wonderful renditions of his music, extended his hand towards me, and said in a very enthusiastic and sincere voice - looking straight into my eyes, "that was great!!" Coming from Travis himself, my eyes got kinda misty, and I felt so good that maybe I was able to do some justice to his music . More shaking each others hands, and applause all around for each of the song interpretations.
What follows is a reproduction of what the producer , Bill McCune, program handed us as we entered the house :
Guess I'll Go Home - Oscar Cisneros
Abilene- Dolan Ellis, Bill Zorn, Ian McPherson
Last Train to San Fernando- Ian McPherson
All My Sorrows- Igor Glenn, Oscar Cisneros
Delia's Gone - Bill Zorn, Oscar Cisneros, Igor Glenn, Dolan Ellis
I never Will Marry - Igor Glenn
Sin Ti (without You)- Frank Ross
Elijah Rock- Bill Zorn & Igor Glenn
If I Were Free- Bill Zorn, Travis, Ellen Murphy, Oscar Cisneros
Cloudy Summer Afternoon - Ian McPherson, Ellen Murphy & Oscar Cisneros
Scarlet Ribbons- Ted Newman
I'm a Drifter- Dolan Ellis, Ellen Murphy & Bill Zorn
Truly Do- Bill Zorn & Oscar Cisneros
Vamos Al Baile - Ted Newman, Oscar Cisneros, Igor Glenn & Ellen Murphy
La Bamba & Guantanamera- Tim Wiedenkeller with Travis
One For theMoney - (Instrumental) Ted Newman; (vocal) Bill Zorn , Ellen Murphy & Igor Glenn
Windsong- Dolan Ellis & Ellen Murphy
The Time of Man - Bill Zorn (Sung for Congress at the Request of Senator Yarborough from Texas), Igor bow on bass
Lavinia's Parlor - Ellen Murphy
Golden Apples of the Sun - Ellen Murphy
Rayito de Luna - Travis, Ellen Murphy, Oscar Cisneros & Frank Ross
Tonto- Debbie Daly - in Spanish
Malagueña Salerosa- Dolan Ellis
El Abandonado- Frank Ross with Travis words
So Long Stay Well- Igor Glenn
You are My Sunshine - everyone
** Poem to be found in the Features Section - Just click the link
Frank Sanchez must be mentioned as a percussionist whose credits includes playing for Travis, also The Kingston trio for seven years, and the Gypsy Kings , among other stars. Frank was adding his rhythms to most of the songs performed here.
Other songs sung, but not included in the handout were: Ay Amor Ya no Me Quieras Tanto - led beautifully by Tim Wiedenkeller and La Vaquilla Colorada - by Frank Ross & Ellen Murphy.
I should mention that because of the nature of filming a documentary , I would not be surprised if certain songs ended up in the cutting room once the documentary is made (this writer's opinion).
Certain songs stand out for me , and from my observation I have to say that Abilene was great . Dolan Ellis must receive kudos for his version of Malagueña Salerosa. Ay , Amor Ya no me quieras Tanto - led very nicely by Tim Wiedenkeller who I thought was simply the best musician in our midst (all due respect to the others). Ted Newman's version of Scarlet Ribbons was beautifully delivered. I loved seeing Travis using his good right hand as Tim played the chords with his left on the SAME GUITAR . Tim's poem was sweet , and so very appropriate.
In all, it was a lovely afternoon , and a super tribute to a fine musician, Travis Edmondson , who touched all of our lives with his and Bud's wonderful interpretations of all those great songs. “
Frank Ross performing ""El Abandonado" at the singalong tribute
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Travis Edmonson made his breakthrough with The Gateway Singers, resident group at the hungry i
Be sure and check out the website celebrating the great San Francisco club at www.hungryi.net
For More of the best in 1960s entertainment, Click the logo above to check out the ultimate illustrated guide to "I Spy" with Robert Culp and Bill Cosby at www.l23.org
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