Dan Hughes' Musical Journey
July 26, 2010
San Antonio, out of all the musical journeys, it's time to stay right at home and talk about our city. When you live in a community and the different venues music can be found here you have to start right here at the AT&T Center. Through the years I have seen several artists here including Eric Clapton, Santana, Billy Joel, Elton John, Neil Diamond - all of them here and it's a wonderful venue.
I love to go downtown too, to the Majestic Theater. I've seen Chicago, Art Garfunkle, Vikki Carr our number one fan. The Majestic is wonderful, one of the most beautiful theaters that you would ever want to experience. To hear those artists there it's just phenomenal.
We use to have the Verizon Amphitheater and I saw many shows there before it closed its door. I've seen shows from Styx, Tom Petty, just to name a few. I saw Styx there and I was fortunate enough to be walking backstage to congratulate them after their performance and we were all rocking the Styx look. It was very cool moment.
Of all the venues in town you can't talk about San Antonio and not talk about Gruene Hall, in Gruene, Texas. The one regret I have so far is that I have never seen a concert there. I've been to the hall several times, but still haven't been able to see someone perform there yet. It's on my list to do. But I have to talk about Gruene Hall, it's an incredible kind of atmosphere that you find there and I'm really looking forward to doing that soon.
With all that said, the absolute number one musical journey is of a personal nature.
My daughter got married last January at Canyon Springs, where we hold our annual golf scramble. It's a beautiful area there and they host a lot of weddings. We were looking for a minister and Sara and I were talking about Rev. Walker from Antioch Baptist Church where we practiced, and Rev. Walker was such a wonderful man and such a wonderful part of our team in many ways. Unfortunately we lost him earlier in the year so we were trying to decide who would be a good pastor for the wedding.
It was an odd situation to be in, so I thought about it a while and shot an e-mail to Richie Furay. Now I have read Richie's book, for people who don't know Richie was a member of Buffalo Springfield, Poco and Souther-Hillman-Furay Band which was a combination of great talents. He is an incredible pioneer in the country rock, maybe the leading individual in creating that sound.
I read the book from a mutual friend and Richie is from Ohio, and even though we had never met I knew his music and I knew his story. Richie had become a minister after his time in rock and roll, so I asked in the e-mail if he did out of town weddings.
He wrote me back and told me he appreciated me contacting him, but said typically he doesn't do weddings. He had only done one for Rusty Young who was his band mate in Poco. He said to wish Sara and Craig the best.
A day or two later he calls me back and he says to me, "Dan you know, I've been thinking on that and if you'd still like me to come, I'd like to come."
I was so honored.
Part of the preparation for the wedding, he spoke with Sara and asked her if she would like him to sing her a song during the service. It was a song he wrote for his daughter off his Heartbeat of Love Album called "Only for You." He also sang it at his daughter's wedding.
Sara thought that would be great. So we're at the wedding and we have a father with his daughter on that special day, and Richie pulls out his guitar, faced Sara and Craig, and starting singing the song. I wept like I had never wept in my life. And I'm not a guy who cries a great deal, but hearing him sing that and having that moment is without question the No. 1 musical moment of my life.
It no doubt has been a great memory for me to not only get to know this man, because I grew up listening to Buffalo Springfield and Poco. Truly if you haven't had the opportunity to listen to this man, you owe it to yourself to. One of the greatest joys I've had is rediscovering his music over the past year and realizing how influential this man has been.
San Antonio to me is a unique music city and that's why this story fits to me. This city has a local flavor, a personal taste to the music as I see it. Of course we have the national aspect but we have a local, acquired taste of music that I think you can't find in many places.