A photo retrospective of iconic, Houston-based metal institution, deadhorse – spanning their triumphant reunion performance from 2011 to the present!
ALL IMAGES COPYRIGHT © WES DODSON
A great big, 12-yard dump truck full of muchos gracias is in order for Allen ‘Aplo’ Price, Michelle & Michael Argo, George Dennis, Krixten Hawley, Greg Martin, Charlene Burrell, Bob Harrell, Garrett McCall, and sure… two thumbs up (the ass) to Ray Zombeano Grindle!
In Eternal Memory
(31 August 1938 – 29 August 1963)
by Wes Dodson
Fifty years ago today my uncle, Leo Simpson, was employed by Titus Paint Company in Houston. He was 24 years old, recently married, and a resident of Pasadena, Texas. Leo and his co-worker, Dallis S. Nobley, were tasked with painting an air conditioning duct outside the Chamber of Commerce building in downtown Houston. They set about their task on the 22nd floor. By 11:15 AM, they had made their way down to the 10th floor of the building when their hoist suddenly collapsed. Both men fell seven stories to their deaths, landing on the roof of the three-story Woolworth’s building next door. Both men were laid to rest in Pasadena two days later on what would have been Leo’s 25th birthday.
The day before, Martin Luther King, Jr. gave his famous “I Have A Dream” speech from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial. I have often wondered if Leo and Mr. Nobley were listening to that speech on a little transistor radio as they worked. The Beatles had released “She Loves You” the week prior. Could they perhaps have had a fleeting glimpse into what would become Beatlemania before they departed this world?
Sadly, not one solitary member of my family present at the time survives today to answer any questions.
In honor of the 50th anniversary of his death, I have collected some data to help paint a picture of 1963, with a particular emphasis on the last month of Leo Simpson’s life.
In retrospect, 1963 was a fascinating, historic year of triumph and tragedy. Politics, music, innovation, and civil rights each left long standing impacts on modern culture. Fifty years ago, the coins in your pocket were made of 90% silver. Today, the dollar bill isn’t worth the paper it’s printed on. A half century later, we have DOJ investigations into rodeo clowns, movies about flying sharks, and a reduced-sodium fast food menu that can’t kill you fast enough. The George Wallace racism of 1963 has now been replaced with an equally disgusting reverse-racism. This cannot possibly be what Dr. King had in mind! In many regards, 1963 was the height (and death) of a golden age of accomplishment, self-reliance, social reform… and dignity.
The average cost of a new house was $12,650
The average income was $5,807
The average cost of a new car was $3,233
A loaf of bread was 22 cents.
A bedroom air conditioner was $149.95
Debuts in 1963:
Audio Cassettes (Philips)
Lava Lamp (or The Astro Lamp) launched by Edward Craven Walker
AT&T introduced touch tone phones
Pull top can used for soda by the Alcoa Company
The first prototype Learjet took flight
First US State Lottery (New Hampshire)
American Express introduced credit cards in the UK
Kodak introduced the Instamatic camera
Mississippi physician, James D. Hardy, performed the first successful lung transplant
Elizabeth Taylor became the first actress to earn $1,000,000 for a single film – ‘Cleopatra’.
SELECTED HIGHLIGHTS FROM 1963
11 – The Beatles released their second UK single, “Please Please Me”, which reached #1.
14 – Alabama Governor, George Wallace, vows “segregation now, segregation forever” in his inaugural speech.
29 – Died: Robert Frost (poet)
17 – Born: Michael Jordan
21 – Medicare submitted to Congress by President Kennedy (passed under President Johnson).
25 – The Beatles released their second US single, “Please Please Me”, with no impact on US Charts.
5 – Died: Patsy Cline (singer)
18 – The Supreme Court ruled in “Gideon v. Wainwright” that a fair trial “cannot be realized if the poor man charged with [the] crime has to face his accusers without a lawyer to assist him”.
18 – Construction of the Astrodome began and was completed six weeks ahead of schedule in 1965.
21 – Alcatraz prison, off San Francisco, CA, closed its doors.
22 – The Beatles released their debut album, “Please Please Me”, in the UK
Harvard Professor, Timothy Leary, lost his teaching post after providing students with LSD.
3 – Died: Pope John XXIII
6 – Born: Johnny Depp
U.S. “Zone Improvement Plan”, or ZIP codes, initiated.
3 – The Beatles performed at The Cavern Club in Liverpool for the 275th and final time.
3 – Born: Metallica front man, James Hetfield
7 – Born: Patrick Bouvier Kennedy, son of President John F. Kennedy and First Lady Jackie Kennedy, five and a half weeks early. He died 39 hours later.
8 – Kingsmen released “Louie Louie” which radio stations labeled obscene.
9 – Born: Whitney Houston
15 – Eddie Mays, 34, was the last person to be executed in the state of New York in the electric chair at Sing Sing prison.
21 – Martial law was declared in South Vietnam.
23 – The Beatles released “She Loves You” in the UK, where it went to #1 for four weeks.
25 – Paul McCartney was fined £31 and given a 1 year suspended license for speeding.
28 – “I Have A Dream” speech was delivered by Martin Luther King, Jr.
30 – Hot Line communications link between Moscow and Washington DC installed.
Billboard Number One Song:
August 31 – September 20th: “My Boyfriend’s Back” by The Angels
22 – John Fitzgerald Kennedy, 35th President of the United States, assassinated in Dallas, Texas
22 – “With The Beatles” released.
29 – The Beatles released “I Want To Hold Your Hand” single, charting at #1 in the US Hot 100.
U.S. Congress authorized JFK half-dollar coin.
8 – Frank Sinatra, Jr., was kidnapped in Lake Tahoe, Nevada. Released unhurt three days later.
20 – Studebaker ended production.
Interview with Paul Nasty from Pride Kills by Timothy Danger.
Paul and Tim discuss past bands, the Victoria scene then and now, as well as throwing in some Pride Kills news and history.
Listen Now : Interview with Paul Nasty
Meet Mike Hutson! Our new writer and representative of the Houston area.
Greetings and salutations. My name is Mike and I live in the suburbs
of Houston, Tx. The gang at OMBg asked me to write a little something
on the webpage and assist in promoting the local music scene in my
area. I happily agreed. I have been hitting shows in the city here for
about 18 years now, Jesus that makes me old. I have had the pleasure
of seeing fantastic H town bands from Spunk to Sprawl to 30footfall
and Fuska and tons in between. I have played in bands, and love this
city and its eclectic scene.
I am a proud dad and self proclaimed geek. Lover of Star Wars and all
things horror. I was a writer long ago, then I forgot how. I am a
mediocre musician. I met the OMBG crew a little over a year ago and
have proudly watched them grow to a respectable drunken podcast. I
have been around since the beginning of their fantastic journey, and
was actually sitting at the table when they spawned the Old Man Bitter
Those are my creds.
I plan on welcoming the OMBG crew into my home in a few weeks for one
of their weekly broadcasts. We will be discussing and promoting the
When We Ruled H Town Showcase # 2 on October 14th at Fitzgeralds in
Houston. Some great bands are reuniting for this gig, and to promote
the incredible When We Ruled H-Town documentary. This doc is near and
dear to me. It showcases the incredible talent that ruled the Houston
music scene in the 1990s. Over the next few weeks I will plan on
putting down in writing my thoughts on the Houston scene then and now,
and try to explain why it should matter.
I wanna thank the OMBG crew for allowing me to write this thing. They
are super cool down to earth honest peeps. They LOVE music and LOVE
promoting Texas underground music to everyone that will listen, and
even to those who wont. I dont expect you to love everything we do,
but I hope you will give it a listen.
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