I lived and worked in Austin, Texas, during the 1970/80's and managed my brother, Steven Fromholz's career. Did I have any background in that sort of thing - my gracious no. Being a bonafide country girl (and greener than Arkansas) he asked me to take the job and so I did. I had a little band of my own, called "Texas Zephyr" and we played lots of beer joints, small clubs and VFW's but as far as actually having any great knowledge of the business end of the thing I didn't. It was a real awakening but, I met lots of interesting people - including B.W. Stevenson. He and my brother were good friends and worked together occasionally.
Going to work for Steven was a whole new world for me. He and his wife lived in a little rock house in the country in South Austin and that's where I first met Buck - we were both invited to Sunday afternoon dinner. He and I talked horses, riding - everything but music. I was too green to be impressed with who he was and I think he liked that. We exchanged phone numbers and planned to ride horses together at some point in the future. In the back of my mind I was thinking - yeah, right! Buck was personable, handsome and the ladies fell all over themselves for him. I was older, taller, certainly not a romantic interest and absolutely not "cool" so when would he have time to hang out with me? Well, the next week to be exact. He had a couple of horses at that time and we'd ride whenever we got the chance and became good friends.
It was an ongoing battle of wits - he teased me about being tall and I teased him about being short! He was an excellent horseman and I used to tell him that he wouldn't be nearly that good if he was a tall guy - that being short his center of gravity was so low he could just naturally ride. He'd come back with something like how easy it was for me to get on a horse 'cause I was so tall - like I could stand flat-footed and just throw my leg over the saddle. We had great, great fun and I grew to love him like another brother.
At that time Buck had this huge Great Dane dog named Marmaduke. Occasionally, when he was on the road for an extended period of time he would leave Marmaduke at Steven's house. If you went to visit and Marmaduke was in residence you just waited until he was at a distance to get out of your car. Steven had a Rhodesian Ridgeback - a big one - and if the two dogs came at you at once it was hit the ground and hope for the best. They were certainly not the best mannered dogs but it was delightful to watch them together. Marmaduke was a huge clown and Buck loved him dearly.
One of the most impressive memories I have of Buck happened about 8:30 on a summer's evening in downtown Austin. Steven was playing at one of the club's on Sixth Street (before it became the "Sixth Street" it is today) and I had a date to go to his show. Now, my date was 6'9" tall and a rather imposing looking individual. We rounded the corner, just before getting to the club entrance, and passed an alley. Right at the alley's entrance was Buck, backed up against a brick wall with his cowboy belt (with the big buckle that has a hook) wrapped tightly around his hand - buckle hanging free. There were three great big guys giving him a full ration of trouble. He wasn't talking back to them but was rather crouched in readiness for them to jump him. My date, also a friend of Buck's, gently edged me to one side and stepped into the alley.
"Is there a problem, Buck?" he said.
"Guess you need to ask these guys," Buckwheat replied, and he was dead serious.
The three thugs turned at the same time and saw a 6'9" guy standing there looking down at them. On the other side they were already faced with a ferocious short man with a makeshift weapon in his hand. They were gone in an instant of our appearance on the scene. Buck put his belt back on and we all three walked on into the club. My date asked him what that was all about. He began to laugh, "The stupid SOB's were trying to rob me. Can you imagine any credible robber picking on a musician? Hell, I may have all of $5 in my wallet - musicians never have any money!"
We were still laughing when we finally found a seat and settled in for a great night of music.Return to First Page
Music Maven can be reached here. She also shared the picture below of B. W. Stevenson and Steven Fromholz in concert together. Thanks, MM! It is much appreciated.
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