(Photo taken at Christmas, 2006)
Montreal was not a mecca for
western music during my teenage years in the late thirties and early forties.
The music of the big bands was all the rage even though the most popular
Canadian artists, Hank Snow and Wilf Carter (Montana Slim), made periodic trips
to Montreal to record for RCA Victor. My main interest was sports. (football,
track and baseball, but especially hockey)
Take a trip to New York City. Look for sheet music of the songs of Bob Nolan. Try to locate Bob's publisher. Hope to be greeted by a popular music composer. Come away with six of Bob's obscure songs. Wow! Does this really happen in real life? Yes, it did. When I walked into the music publisher's establishment, I was greeted by Dick Manning, the composer of "I Still Feel the Same about You" which was recorded by the Pioneers. He told me that I looked like one of the Pioneers, and before I left, I had in my hands the sheet music to "The Broken Heart Waltz," "Crossroads," "Desolation," "Empty Arms," "A Sailor Dreams" and" Stray Wind." Oh, I forgot to mention - there was no charge.
Barton Clark has constantly promoted Bob Nolan and the Sons of the Pioneers. He gave us the sheet music for "Let Me Share Your Name" and a Bob Nolan song we had been unable to find, "Crossroads". We are grateful for his generosity and knowledge of the Sons of the Pioneers.
He has a huge collection of sheet music and recordings which he willingly shared with us.
We have placed his page in the Recollections section because, although he did not meet Bob Nolan face to face, he did correspond with him. Barton is one of the rare persons lucky enough to have a note from that notoriously poor correspondent, Bob Nolan.