George Kaleb Bingham, George Harrison’s sister

(Frank) Today Around Kansas starts with George Kaleb Bingham, a well-known regional artist. Next we’re calling all Beatles fans – we had the opportunity to interview George Harrison’s sister, Louise, who shared the story of Liverpool Legends, the Beatles tribute band she helped to found. Then enjoy a poem from Ron Wilson, and we’ll end with a look at some famous gravestones.

Closed Captioning Brought to you by Ag Promo Source. Together we grow. Learn more at agpromosource.com.

(Frank Chaffin) It’s really early in the morning, it’s Wednesday and so it must be Around Kansas! I’m Frank. (Deb Goodrich) I must be Deb. (Frank) It is Around Kansas. Morning. (Deb) Beautiful fall so far. (Frank) It is. It’s absolutely gorgeous here in northeast Kansas. (Deb) It is, and you know all the critters are getting ready to hibernate and they get a little bit antsy this time of year — my way of leading up to, I killed my first rattlesnake in western Kansas the other day, actually shot him. I just blew the buttons right off him, so I couldn’t save it. My friend Dana Anson said, did you get the buttons so we can put them on a necklace? Jake’s got some from snakes he’s killed over the years. Like no, because I shot them right off, because it was all coiled up so the buttons were just too close to his head at that point, when he was all coiled up. (Frank) Was it an Annie Oakley shot or did you have to empty the chamber? (Deb) Oh honey it was sad. It was so pitiful, I’ve got to get my eyes, and I’ve got to get new contacts. It was sad. Jake is standing there just shaking his head. So, that’s a great lead in into this, you’ve got, my hometown of Oakley, this is the Oakley Graphic. They’re looking back a hundred years. Most of the small town papers have these and I love them. They’re my favorites. (Frank) Here’s the story, looking back 100 years ago today: Treed by rattlesnakes for nine hours, James Corbin, nine years old, son of a stockman here, was finally released when cowboys killed 16 rattlers in the rocks under the tree where the boy was perched. The boy was returning from school when he saw a big rattler across the path in front of him. Starting back along the path he saw two more snakes – oh surrounded – then he climbed a tree and waited for the cowboys, to say the snakes were making for the rocky bluff to hibernate for the winter. There’s no telling what will happen if the reporter from the Journal had had two or more drinks, he would’ve been seeing boa constrictors in the jungles of India. This story is predicated on an item that appeared on the Graphic last week and it has stretched so far as to not be recognizable. We lied a little bit ourselves when we wrote it, but this gunk has us skinned a mile. So send us your stories, we’ll have some fun. (Deb) They’re great. (Frank) See, I don’t quite get that, I’m going to have to – “But this gunk has us skinned a mile.” (Deb) I’m not sure exactly either. (Frank) I don’t know either. I’ll just read a part of this one because our director is saying wrap it up guys. Anyway, the JH Aikman Shows appeared in the city Wednesday and were greeted by a fine crowd. Their performances were not as bad as might have been, in fact, people would probably have passed it over and called it pretty fair but for the fact that the employees around the show were a bunch of shortchange artists and we have heard at least a dozen people who were victims of the thieving. (Deb) Man, not the kind of review you want to get in the local paper after your show comes through. Being in theater you can appreciate that. (Frank) I know, I love that show. (Deb) That’s hilarious, hey we got a great show, stay with us.

(Frank) Back again, well; I’m going to really be quiet now because she’s got a whole bunch to say about a story coming up. (Deb) That’s right, I got a whole lot to say. (Frank) Okay, I’m going to take a nap. (Deb): George Kaleb Bingham — but you’re going to be riveted by this Frank — George Kaleb Bingham, of course the famous artist, regional artist, painted scenes along the Missouri River, just an incredibly talented man. His most famous painting though is probably Orders No. 11, about the Jayhawkers, the federal forces putting people in Missouri off their land following Quantrill’s raid on Lawrence. That painting made him very famous; it made Thomas Ewing infamous, just a lot of repercussions from that painting. Well, our friends at Wide Awake Films in Kansas City have done a mind blowing documentary on the life of George Kaleb Bingham, and we are going to share the trailer with you in hopes that you can attend one of the screenings that is coming up. On October 15th there’s a screening at Arrow Rock State Park in Missouri, if you’ve never been to Arrow Rock, I can’t recommend it highly enough, beautiful preserved village, and then October 27th at the Nelson Atkins Art Gallery. So two great opportunities to see it. You can order the DVD or the Blue Ray now. Wide Awake, they won umpteen Emmy’s, they must have a room just to hold their Emmy’s because they won so many. It’s a fine documentary and if you’re wondering what all that has to do with Kansas, of course, Kansas had an awful lot to do with Order No. 11 and the Missouri-Kansas Border War, so Kansas plays a huge role in this story. You’re going to be blown away by this trailer and then by the film itself. (Frank) Let’s see it. (Narrator) It was supposedly found in an antique shop. It wasn’t even signed. (Elizabeth Kornhauser) He spotted it in the window and he recognized it as a great iconic masterpiece. (Narrator) A masterpiece with the humblest of origins. He learned his trade from travelling painters. He wandered the country painting elites and commoners, and anyone who could pay with gold or silver. But he made his name painting the river. (Joan Stack) He helps us to understand who we are as a nation and how we came to think of ourselves as Americans. (Stephanie Fox Knappe) He constructed an American identity out of that stuff of the frontier that had resonance on a national scale. (Narrator) He ran for office and voiced his opinions on canvas. He filled those paintings with his friends, and neighbors, and enemies. There were more than a few of those. Many more after he dared speak out in a time when men were jailed, or shot, if they stood on the wrong side of the debate. (Debra Goodrich Bisel) It’s like this thirst for revenge overrides everything. (Narrator) And it cost him money, jobs, prestige. What kind of man was he? (Debra) He’s a westerner. (Elizabeth) Highly ambitious, one of the very first American artists to make a national reputation. (Joan) He helps us to see where we’ve been and perhaps where we might go in the future.

(Deb) Welcome back folks and while I was busy over in Missouri making documentary films, Frank was busy right here in NOTO with – I’ll tell you Frank, I am so jealous, I was so sad I could not be in Topeka when you had George Harrison’s sister in the WREN Studios with you, so how did that come to pass? (Frank) They asked us, TPAC asked us, would we be willing to speak with her, and Marty who in Liverpool Legends plays George Harrison. We said, absolutely, and so it came to be. She showed up at the studio at 10:00 on Friday morning, and we spent about 20 minutes on the air talking to her. Well, I get to tell you about it. This story is not about someone from Kansas. In fact, she is from Liverpool, England. The story is that this reporter had the express honor to interview her on WREN Internet Radio. I’m talking about Louise Harrison. She is the sister of Beatle George Harrison. Yes, that Beatle! Louise Harrison was in Topeka with the Liverpool Legends, a Beatles re-enactment band. It’s a group that she and Marty Scott founded. Marty Scott portrays George Harrison in the Liverpool Legends. In 2001 Louise saw Marty portray George Harrison. She was totally taken aback by his performance that looked and sounded so much like her late brother. That was what lead to the founding of the Liverpool Legends in 2005. Harrison acted as an advisor to the group, which has performed in Branson, Missouri and all over the world. I can’t tell you how thrilling it was to actually sit next to and talk with the sister of one of the Beatles! The Beatles transformed the direction of pop music in 1964 and their popularity has transcended the generations ever since. Yes, the sister of Beatle George Harrison – Louise Harrison – and I got to meet her and have a great conversation!

(Ron Wilson) One of the great things about multi-generational farms or 4-H Clubs is that it’s a family affair. It’s a time when parents help kids work on their projects and learn. In Horse Shows, for example, we know that for every kid in the ring, there’s an anxious mom or dad or grandma or granddad helping outside the ring. This is a tribute to those Horse Show Moms. Here’s to the Horse Show Mom. That loving mother who has a daughter who thinks Horse Shows are the thing that she should do. Her daughter starts her 4-H project with a single older horse and embarks on a path, which takes her on a wondrous course. Here’s to the Horse Show Mom who gently nags and reminds that the show is in a few weeks and her daughter shouldn’t get behind. Here’s to the Horse Show Mom who rolls out through the cactus and drives the family van to yet another practice. Here’s to the Horse Show Mom who gathers tack and supplies and hopes that her daughter can win an elusive prize. Here’s to the Horse Show Mom studying the rules of the show and hitching up the trailer getting everyone ready to go. Here’s to the Horse Show Mom who digs down in her purse to find a missing hair tie or a safety pin or worse. Here’s to the Horse Show Mom who sits up in the bleachers commenting on the judge or the other horses’ features. Here’s to the Horse Show Mom hauling feed or carrying water while arena dust blows or as temperatures get hotter. Here’s to the Horse Show Mom who will save to pay the debenture for the feed bill and the gas for her daughter’s equine adventure. Here’s to the Horse Show Mom who checks the pattern out and brings the snacks to share with the other moms about. Here’s to the Horse Show Mom who has horses as her passion, who’s always shopping for the latest in horse and rider fashion. Here’s to the Horse Show Mom who calms the pre-show fears and gives a comforting hug or wipes away some tears. Here’s to the Horse Show Mom who thanks the Lord above that her daughter has this interest in a horse to work and love. Whether winning or losing, this mother handles it with aplomb. Let’s all give thanks for the Horse Show Mom. When the Horse Show is over after a long tiring weekend, the Horse Show Mom knows next week she’ll do it all again. Happy Trails.

(Frank) Here we go again, whatever it is. [Laughter] (Deb) Going, going, gone. (Frank) Yeah. (Deb) When you’re gone, how would you like to be remembered Frank? What would you like? (Frank) That wasn’t even meant to be a segway to what she’s going to talk about next. (Deb) We’re so good. (Frank) I know. (Deb) Of course if you’ve been around as long as we have. The epitaphs, of course this is October, people’s minds turn tombstones of course. They always fascinate me. From the time I was a kid, I love visiting cemeteries and so how people choose to be remembered or how their family chooses to remember them. Those final words, that’s pretty important. What are you going to put on yours Frank? (Frank) [laughs] I have no idea. I was here and now I’m gone. I don’t know. (Deb) I think about it a lot. My friends in Philly, they are on the board for the cemetery there at Laurel Hill and Carol’s always joking that Andy’s going to put his resume on the one side, all the wonderful things he’s done and all about how he portrayed General Meade and all that’ll be in. She said it’ll take $10,000 to carve all that into the side. It’s very interesting. One of my favorites is from out at Dodge City, “Here lies Lester Moore, four slugs from a 44, no less no more.” That’s one of my favorite ones. I don’t know if anything in my life will inspire anything that clever. (Frank) People don’t do that anymore. Used to be. Like you say, it’s fun to go back into the old part of the cemeteries and see what’s there. (Deb) See what they say. It certainly won’t take much to put on my resume. [Laughs] That won’t take what 10 letters or something. Let’s take a look at how some famous people chose to be remembered. It’s October and our thoughts turn to pumpkins, falling leaves, and gravestones. Yes, whether made of marble or iron, they are often artistic and beautiful. The words carved there, essentially our VERY last words, are pretty important. Let’s see what a few folks left for us to ponder: The body of Benjamin Franklin, printer. Like the cover of an old book, its contents worn out, and stript of its lettering and gilding, lies here, food for worms. Yet the work itself shall not be lost, for it will, as he believed, appear once more In a new and more beautiful edition, corrected and amended by its Author. The epitaph for Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, creator of Sherlock Holmes, simply reads, STEEL TRUE, BLADE STRAIGHT. Dean Martin, that funny man with a voice like silk, crooned one last time, EVERYBODY LOVES SOMEBODY SOMETIME. Another sweet sentiment is expressed on the stone of Bonnie Parker, of Bonnie and Clyde fame: As the flowers are all made sweeter by the sunshine and the dew, so this old world is made brighter by the lives of folks like you. And while we’re on outlaws, Jesse James lies just over the line in Missouri and his untimely death is recounted on his marker, which says, MURDERED BY A TRAITOR AND A COWARD WHOSE NAME IS NOT WORTHY TO APPEAR HERE. Of course, if we listen to the song or watched Brad Pitt’s, The Assassination of Jesse James, we know that the dirty little coward who shot Mr. Howard was Bob Ford. Some of the markers bear warnings, like this one, belonging to a dentist: Stranger! Approach this spot with gravity! John Brown is filling his last cavity. So, dear viewer, now that you are inspired, go forth in the brisk October air to the graveyard, and read the last words of those gone before. Just make sure you’re home before dark.

(Frank) Time to go. I’m Frank. (Deb) I’m Deb. (Frank) We’ll see you somewhere (Frank and Deb) Around Kansas.

Closed Captioning Brought to you by Ag Promo Source. Together we grow. Learn more at agpromosource.com.

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