Etchings in Stone
FROM A FARM BOY TO A ROUGHNECK TO A COWBOY PICKER TO A CONVICT This CD is truly a 'Concept' album telling the story of the life and times of an old-time Texas musician. In the 1960's, while playing on Slim Willet's Big State Jamboree, in Abilene, Texas, Rick met Tommy Overstreet who became a life-long friend. Rick had his own weekly TV music show at K-PAR TV in Abilene in 1964. He and his band, The Rhythm Rebels, played all over the State of Texas, Oklahoma, New Mexico and California. He had the privilege and honor of playing with some very successful country music artists, such as Bob Wills, Red Foley, Willie Nelson,Bobby Bare, Sonny James, Stonewall Jackson, Loretta Lynn and Jimmy C. Newman, just to name a few. In 1971, Rick Sikes was arrested and charged with bank robbery He was tried, found guilty and sentenced to 25 years and 50 years to run consecutively and sent to Leavenworth Penitentiary. Being a true rebel,he struggled greatly with being locked up. Through many hours of heart-wrenching agony and soul searching, he made the decision to do his best to make something positive out of a very negative situation. His favorite motto became the words of Teddy Roosevelt: 'Always do the best you can with what you have where you are' He formed a band in prison called Rick Sikes and the Survivors. Through his efforts and a song he wrote called 'From the Bottle to the Needle', the warden gave him permission to put together a recording studio. As far as is known, it is the only recording studio inside of a Federal prison anywhere. Included on this CD are some of those recordings created in the studio in prison. He was released from prison in 1985 and he married Jan, one week after being released. He put all of his energy, creative abilities and talents towards building a home, raising two young girls, and generally trying to make up for lost time. He did not pick up his guitar or actively pursue any music interests after getting out of prison, for many years. In 1999, his close friend, Roxy Gordon, and others including good friend, SteamTrain Maury 'King of the Hobos'(who always told him he had a gift of music and called him Music Man), pushed him to start playing and singing again. Roxy passed away in February of 2000 and Rick appeared on stage for the first time in 30 years at the Memorial for Roxy at Sons of Hermann Hall in Dallas in May, 2000. From that appearance, came an interview which was published in the 'Texas Monthly' magazine in January 2001. From that article, came other opportunities and making this CD is one of them. Most of the material on this CD was written by Rick & Jan Sikes and it tells a story of a man's life with music. We hope that you enjoy every song on this CD and that you feel the effort that was put into recording it as you listen. You will find a great variety of music from Traditional Country, Blues, Rock-a-billy, Gospel and Western Swing.