Comments From Bob Williams


Bob, on stage, at the Grand Ole Opry


This is a short, simple story but one of my precious memories. Not everyone got the chance to carry Eddy's guitar but I did ,even if it was only about 10 or 12 feet. In 1947 I was 15 years old and working as a theater usher in Houston Texas. My mother worked a radio station KLEE and they had live shows featuring well known recording artists. Well, I went down one afternoon to see Floyd Tillman in person, and during one of the breaks in the show for a commercial Eddy Arnold's first manager, Col. Tom Parker, came on and announced that Eddy would be appearing at the Rice hotel in Houston, and gave the date, and I remember my great disappointment knowing I had to work that night and wouldn't be able to go. I wanted so much to see him. Being only 15 I couldn't drive and my mother would pick me up after work, and she did so on the night of Eddy's appearance. Knowing how much I wanted to see him she drove me to the Rice hotel and to the entrance the entertainers used. We waited about half an hour and his show was finished and I was on the sidewalk waiting for them to come out. Well, I was rewarded beyond my hopes because first out was a musician I can't name, but second out was Little Roy Wiggins and in those days the musicians carried there own equipment. Roy Wiggins was carrying a heavy steel guitar and an amplifier. Then came Eddy and I call it "providence". He also was carrying his guitar and an amplifier. A lady ran up to him for an autograph and he set his things down to give it to her. When he finished he picked up the amplifier but left the guitar and walked that 10 or 12 feet to a little silver colored teardrop trailer they used to carry their instruments and equipment in, and I seized upon the moment. I stepped over and picked up his guitar case and followed him to his trailer, and handed it to him after he had put his amp inside. I will never forget that big wide famous Eddy Arnold smile and the thank you that had the warmth that all who have ever listened to Eddy speak have to be familiar with. That's it, that's all, but it was at the same time so very much to me. I had no idea back in 1947 that Eddy would be a life long icon to me. I loved him as if he were my brother and I will be 80 years old in February of 2012 and he and his voice are still a part of my daily life.
One thing is for sure.
I couldn't have chosen a better role model than Eddy Arnold.
Bob Williams

Dear Bill and Glenda:

Don Stewart wrote me and said you were accepting Eddy Arnold comments and stories so I am happy to send you mine.

I grew up in Dayton, Ohio and studied the clarinet and saxophone so my music tastes did not extend to country which by the way I heard very little of.

My family spent a few months in Houston, Texas in 1947 when I was 15 years old.  It was there I heard the song "It's A Sin" by Eddy and immediately felt a closeness to him. I have been a fan ever since. Not only did I buy his records I learned his songs and today I must know over a hundred of them still. We moved to the Sacramento area of California shortly after that and I left a standing order at the record shop save me one of all new releases by Eddy for me and a give me a call. I didn't even want to hear them before I bought them. If Eddy sang it I wanted it.

In 1952 I formed my own band and began playing the clubs and private dances all around Sacramento.  I of course featured every Eddy Arnold song I knew and that was most of them.  I did that as an avocation for 42 years.  And then it happened....My brother and I went to memorial auditorium to see him in person and I was spellbound.  I loved this man as if he were my own family. brother and I stopped at one of the better reataurants for something to eat before going home and Eddy walked in with his entourage of two men who traveled with him and sat down not two feet from me at the next table.  I listened to his friendly banter with the waitress and the other men and was just totally awe struck.  When Eddy laughed you just had to laugh with him.  It was infectious.  I couldn't stand it any longer so I got up and stepped over to him and introduced myself and he was the most gracious man I had ever met.  He made it seem like it was HE who was so glad to meet ME.  He talked with me and made it appear like he had all the time in the world to spend with me but knowing I was imposing on his meal I shook his hand again and returned to my seat.

That was one of if not THE highlight of my life.  It w ould not be the last time as I never missed a Lake Tahoe,  Reno or Las Vegas appearance of his again.  I was at his final performance and I cried. Unlike so many other big names Eddy knew what he was doing.  He retired and that was it.  In show business there is a saying that goes, "always leave them wanting more."  Well Eddy, you certainly did that.

There were more encounters but like the one above they were brief but every one memorable. I am now 78 years old and I have had Eddy and his music as part of my whole life you might say.  How much more could one want.  I sincerely wish I could have been one of his close friends. There is more but this isn't supposed to be a book so I'll just say I loved the man, I love his music and his wonderful voice and I'd like to take the opportunity here to wish his family, his son, and daughter, and their families the very best.

Thank you Bill and Glenda for the wonderful website and keeping Eddy's memory and presence alive.

 Robert A. (Bob) Williams

Carmichael, CA

Bob: Many thanks for your contributions to this web site. My son, Robert, and I also attended Eddy's final concert at The  Orleans in Las Vegas on May 16, 1999.  I will always remember this performance..          Bill Comer

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