B. W. Memories
by Art (Mike) Gentry

I'm so glad I have a chance to share some of my favorite pics of BW and myself during the high school years. BW's mother and stepfather were nationally known artists (if not international), not to mention incredible human beings! Since they knew marketing inside out, they took a lot of pictures of us, some of which landed us our first job after high school as entertainers/wranglers at Wilderness Trails Dude Ranch in Durango, Colorado.

His folks actually took me in off the streets during one of the darker times of my life - did I mention they were incredible people? His stepdad (Harold Quiram) was a prince - so wise - I would hang on every word he said (so many stories). His mom is so loving... still paints... wonderful! BW and I were blessed!

I think these two pics of BW & I (along with song list, etc.) sent us to Durango.

B. W. Stenvenson and Mike Gentry B. W. Stenvenson and Mike Gentry
*Yes, my guitar was an Airline special from Montgomery Ward - Harmony Sovereign copy. BW's was a Gibson J-50

We went to the senior high school prom - Adamson High School, Dallas. My memory has certainly failed me, but I'm sure BW's date was Carol Smith; wonderful Christian girl. I'm embarrassed that I cannot remember my date's name. She was/is such a sweet person and so gracious to go to the prom with me. If anyone recognizes her, please remind me of her name. We never dated before or after the prom (not that I wouldn't have loved to).

(left to right) Carol Smith, 
 B. W. Stevenson, Mike's date, Mike Gentry

Here is "Happy" BW before the prom: (Notice the incredible artwork in the background - Harold Quiram originals)
B. W. Stevenson

Here's a couple more before BW went out on a date. It was not unusual for BW to do a song right before he left for his date :)
B. W. Stevenson B. W. Stevenson

I was happy to see Shirley McDonald's post on this page. The name of the coffee house was "The Loft." Shirley is now Shirley Hawthorne (I hope... I'm pretty sure I'm remembering it right, but the brain cells are suspect). Those of you who know Shirley know she is a phenomenal person! Shout out - think she has a photography company in Lewisville.

BW (Chuck, or birth records: Louis Charles Stevenson) and I picked together from somewhere in our junior year of high school to about 1 1/2 years after graduation. Played in several coffee houses but mostly the Rubaiyat & Moon Alley. Ron Shipman was owner/manager.

BW & I entered the Air Force October 28, 1968. BW got an early release from the Air Force, left his base in Arkansas and arrived in Dallas just in time to see me off to Vietnam. As soon as BW was able to get away from me, his career skyrocketed exponentially. Says something about his talent (and mine). Ain't it a shame.

I do some music now with folks from our high school and from Vietnam - mostly Christian and ministry oriented... but since they all knew or met and played with BW, there is never a lack of reminiscing over the times with BW.

Have to share this:
(This isn't to super spiritualize anything. I'm sure many of you have had similar experiences)
I was co-pastoring with Randy Nusbaum in Denton (he was senior pastor, I was associate pastor), shortly before BW passed. One morning Randy came in and told me he saw in the paper that BW was going to be singing in a club in Denton. We both felt a very strong urge to visit with him. We went that evening and the first thing we asked him was concerning his relationship with the Lord. We didn't plan it that way... it just sort of fell out of our mouths. He started talking about his recent Christian album and his love of God. We felt an overwhelming sense of peace and left knowing he belonged to God.

I now know why we needed so badly to go visit BW that evening... it wasn't for him... it was for us. We are greatly comforted knowing he is with the Lord.

That being said, we miss you BW... see ya soon!

Here's my pic:
Art (Mike) Gentry

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