As a token of our thanks to folks for supporting The Hayloft Gang on USA Projects we sent out our rewards on May 16, 2013. We truly appreciate everyone’s financial contribution as well as the help in spreading the word about our campaign.
Depending on the level of support donors received perks from an audio CD or digital download of the soundtrack, a unique set of Hayloft Gang postcards, a signed copy of the companion book of essays, and a DVD of the documentary with extras, when completed.
Our funding is being used to clear the copyrights and license the music in the film, so we can release The Hayloft Gang on DVD. This is a complicated and time-consuming process, dealing with the bureaucracy of the record companies and music publishers. If things go as planned we anticipate a fall 2013 DVD release.
Sign up for our mailing list for updates on the latest news from The Hayloft Gang.
One of our viewers of “The Hayloft Gang” documentary wrote us and shared some of his memories of growing up and listening to The National Barn Dance, We encourage other folks to share their memories of this once great radio show.
I remember the National Barn Dance (NBD) with fond nostalgia. I was born in 1943 in Rockford Illinois, which is near Chicago. I became a fan at a very young age. I began to listen to the show in the late forties with my family. I was very fortunate to attend a show at the Eighth St. Theater in 1950. My Uncle Ted purchased tickets for my parents and me. It was probably the first entertainment event that required tickets that my parents ever attended. Even at the age of seven I still remember the colorful stage with the multitude of performers. I was hooked on the NBD and continue to listen through the 50’s and even the performances on WGN in the 60’s.
Pictured L-R Cousin Tilford (Holly Swanson) Dolph Hewitt, Carolyn DeZurik, Scotty Wiseman, Lulu Belle Wiseman, Doc Hopkins, Chick Hurt, Rex Allen
I remember visiting another uncle’s home and discovered the NBD album beside his radio. I was mesmerized as learned more about each performer. I could not put it down until I read it from cover to cover.
Lulu Belle and Scotty were my favorite performers and felt betrayed when they retired to North Carolina. I probably had a young boy’s crush on Lulu Belle.
My other favorite performers were Homer and Jethro, Bob Atcher, Arkie the Arkansas woodchopper, Dolph Hewitt, Grace Wilson, and Captain Stubby and the Buccaneers.
I must confess that I was a member of the evil empire that destroyed the WLS NBD. In 1960 while a high schooler I became enamored with rock n roll. I listened to Dick Biondi every night at 9:00 pm on WLS with a transistor radio next to my ear so my parents couldn’t hear this music. I returned to country music during my college years and dropped rock n roll with the British invasion. (I also supported another one of the competitors. I have attended the Grand Ole Opry many times and as recently as two weeks ago.)
I really enjoyed the PBS video by Steve Parry on the Hayloft Gang and the book edited by Chad Berry. The cultural and sociological aspects of this entertainment group match many of the parts of my background. As I now reminisce about my youth I have fond memories of my connections to the NBD