Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Now on Facebook

David Turner has created a DJ's page on Facebook.  Click here to check it out.

Thanks for visiting!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Jon Stainbrook's Obituary

[Click on the image to enlarge]

Thursday, June 03, 2010

Jon Stainbrook has died

Very sad news... David Turner just called to tell me Jon Stainbrook has died. After a very long battle, Jon succumbed to MS this morning. Kathy Stainbrook will send me his obituary and plans for his funeral/memorial service, which I will post here.

I am unspeakably sad about this. Jon was the first person who ever believed in me enough to hire me to play harmonica. He inspired me with his intensity. He has been part of my musical journey all these years, since 1976.

Happy trails, my friend.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Buzz Leer!

One of the beauties of this blog is that it is here all the time, and it will be here forever since it doesn't cost anything. Sooner or later, every person who was ever associated with Dirty Jacks Theater is likely to stumble upon it.

The lastest is Buzz Leer, who was at DJs in (I think) 1973, '74, '75, and '77. He and I have never met, but I heard the name a lot while I was at the theater in '76 and '79.

Buzz has been busy. Click here for his Demo Reel. Buzz is still an actor; was the host of "House Detective" on the HGTV channel for five seasons, ending in 2007.

He promises to share his DJs stories here on the blog. Buzz, Welcome!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

"Jon Jon" Stainbrook

Tim O'Reilly met up with Jon Stainbrook in Washington DC and kindly sends us a report:


I did my best not to call him “Jon Jon” as we coordinated a meeting over the phone; I had coffee with Jon Stainbrook last Thursday.

We had corresponded via email about a year ago (thanks to the “Dirty Jack dust” originally thrown into the air by Rick Davis when he engineered this site), but we never got our respective acts together. Jon and I established that we both lived in the national capital region, but that’s sprawling. I spent the best part of last winter in Baghdad, Jon was busy, and there were a couple of subliminal factors at play.

First, there’s something Rick ran into (and myself later) when he tried to reassemble the cadre of folks that were lead and supporting actors (metaphor intended) in a magic portion of both our lives--the summer of 1976 in Jackson Wyoming. What do you say to someone who was a fond acquaintance (or friend) and who helped shape your life 30+ years ago?--especially since you waited 30+ years to contact them?

Second, how does one convey an appreciation for the impact made through relationships that are defined by depth--and not a time continuum?

I had met Jon Jon a couple of times in 1976 as a member of Dirty Jack’s Band, but hadn’t seen him since 1978 (when I returned and did a solo gig as the entertainment in the Chuck Wagon). Even then he reminded me of Toby Tyler--and all of us as part of the circus.

There was a lot unspoken. I didn’t recognize Jon--he approached me at the place we’d agreed on. He commented that he favored his mom--probably correctly assuming I was expecting a younger version of Dirty Jack. Jon bought us both coffee; before we realized, an hour had passed.

I mentioned that the whole catalyst for dusting the Jackson memories was Rick’s web site. I continued that the underlying challenge was that memories do not get clearer--keeping the Site energized was difficult at best. Jon mentioned he’d reviewed the Site and some of the things that stood out were the pictures of the 4th of July parade (’76). He talked about memories of the (Stainbrook) “white house” where Jon (Senior?) had held an ice-breaker barbeque for the cast and band when we arrived early that summer. I shared how I was hired as a guitar/banjo/vocalist and had laryngitis for the first week I was in Jackson (looking back--it was probably the altitude). He asked whether I remembered Kathy and Gretchen (yes). Jon asked about Doc (Pat) Holt and I reminded him Pat passed in the 80’s--and we both agreed that Pat had been a exceptional showman. I shared that Rick and I had had no luck finding Marco, the drummer--Jon volunteered Marco’s last name: “Marco Fleming?” He asked if I remembered John Dorish or if I had seen his work. I mentioned I’d had an email exchange with John about a year ago and seen some of his work on line. Jon said he was in contact with John and hoped to meet with him some time in New York. We talked about Jon’s grandfather and the tour business, the white-water rafting company (where I’d worked part-time in 1978), and Ben Franklin’s. We talked about the A-frame (Al’s?) down the street from the theater where we often ate breakfast. Jon asked when I was in Jackson last--(1978)--and he remarked how much it had changed. He mentioned the empty lot next to the theater where his dad would park his rig and the donkey would graze before and after the show. He mentioned the Chuck Wagon (post empty lot next to the theater)--the unique roof and the corn on the cob and baked beans. I went through some of the other band members--Jon seemed amazed (?) that Tom Dunham had been a music teacher in ‘76--did some years as a weather broadcaster--and returned to teaching music in Jackson. He seemed similarly impressed that Sean was teaching high school music in Seattle and that Rick was actively playing music in Denver.

I think we both did our best to stay away from the melancholy. Jon did share a brief glimpse of the auction of Dirty Jack’s and how it was like a yard sale--parting with chandeliers and costumes and stage lights--material pieces infused with so many memories. I asked about the (awesome) script for Paint Your Wagon. (I thought it was a collaborative effort between Jon and Kathy). He shared there wasn’t much to do in Jackson in the winter and he remembered his dad working on it. I told him we never knew how long the show would last--because if his dad started a dialogue with the front row--telling Pollock jokes--the show could go over by an hour. We agreed that his dad has a rare sense of humor; Jon shared that on good days, the nurses comment that they still see glimpses of that sense of humor every now and then. I shared that we all had a crush on Nancy--and we all thought that Scotty was the future husband. He mentioned Nancy’s beautiful singing voice; I shared that her acting impressed me most. He said he wasn’t sure about his dad’s singing voice--and I told him I would give almost anything to hear a few phrases of Jon’s rendition of “I was born under a wand’rin’ star....”

We both had to get back to work. Jon (maybe realizing a “logic hole”) asked: “How did you get to Jackson?” “I was a music student at the University of Idaho. I saw an ad on our bulletin board. I think Jon must have canvassed all the colleges in the Northwest. I put together a demo tape (a bathroom recording) and sent it in with a picture and a cover letter. I was accepted.” Young Jon just shook his head: “My dad was amazing!”

Tim O’Reilly

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Happy Birthday Nancy Stainbrook

Remembering Nancy today..on her birthday. Miss you.

-Tom DeWester

Thursday, October 01, 2009

Googling Dirty Jacks

In the Summer of 1988...

We ate al fresco in the town that evening at Sweetwaters and went to the 8 PM show at Dirty Jacks Wild West Theatre.

It is a fun filled evening of hilarious wild west comedy. It is also very family friendly. At the time we happily attended their performance, they had been performing there for 17 years. Much laughter was heard throughout the comedy skit and we smiled for days thinking about the actors crazy antics on stage.
You Grew Up in Jackson If...

-If you know the difference between "Jackson" and "Jackson Hole", and laugh at people who don't!
-If you know what "KSGT" stands for
-If you ever ate at a restaurant called "Topper's"
-If you remember what and where Kelly's Alley was, and ditto for Second Station
-If you ever took a ski lesson from Pepi and learned the difference between carving and butchering your turns
-If you went to the Cutter Races
-If you ever hot-walked the polo ponies (that was a Girl Scouts thing)
-If you remember dog sled races down Broadway
-If you remember the old Pink Garter Theater
-If you avoided the town square on summer evenings when the shootout was going on
-If you skied the "town hill"
-If you ever took class field trips to: the Wax Museum; the fish hatchery; the Star Valley cheese factory; the Jackson Hole History Museum
-If you ever rode your bike in the 4th of July Parade
-If you competed in Little Waxers
-If you competed over who got to ring the church bell in the old Baptist church
-If you went to science camp at the Teton Science School
-If you remember when the Teton Theater was the only one in town, 2 movies for 2 weeks, and no kids allowed in the balcony!!
-If you remember the old drive-in
-If you remember the "Y" (hint: it's not a YMCA)
-If you remember the "arcade" at the old A-1 campground
-If you ever heard "Let's go, let's show, let's roll, let's rodeo. Let's get wild rough and western and a wee bit Western, let's get this show on the road!"

(more in the comments at link, including DJs reference)

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Randy Houghtaling has died

Just thought I would pass this on, Randy died [in early July]. She had been sick for a long while and finaly went to sleep. Sorry, all who knew her, she was a good friend of mine.

-Kathy Stainbrook


I devoted a blog post mostly to Randy Houghtaling back in June of 2005: The Actors - Part I

I am so sorry to hear she has died. She fired my imagination 33 years ago...

Monday, December 22, 2008

A Holiday Message from Tom DeWester

Well, it's been so quiet here for so long!!!

I would just like to say Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all old Dirty Jackster's and Dirty Jacks fans.

I hope everyone has a great holiday season. Ho Ho HO(one Ho for each of the three amigos)

Plus one Ho for Dave Joder (HO)That's the way it Ho--s

-Tom DeWester

Sunday, July 20, 2008

A Letter from Zita Berger

Hi Rick,

Thanks for replying so quickly. The pictures I scanned are attached. I may have a few more from other summers but these were the ones that were in the book on my shelf. I think it was 1995.

I think the thing I remember the most was how much fun it was to hang out there, before and after the show. Everyone was so friendly. I loved spending time at the Cadillac drinking and listening to the stories and the analysis of that night's show.

I also have really fond memories of the player piano and the song Stormy Weather that played over and over and over!

If I think of anything else, I'll let you know.

Thanks, Zita; Great pictures! Please click on the picutres for a larger image.