I was very excited to receive the following comment from David Wood of Boulder, Colorado:
“I was Walt Conley’s guitar player from 1959 to 1961, playing at Michael’s Pub, the Exodus, and the Satire. We continued to jam at the Fort Restaurant in Morrison until his death. Michael’s in Boulder closed down in ’61, never to reopen, but the Exodus and the Satire went on for many years. Walt and I were backup acts to Josh White, Cisco Houston, and the Smothers Brothers, in addition to recording with Judy Collins, the Harlin Trio, and others in 1959, Folk Song Festival at Exodus.
“I was also on one of his singles, Colorado, Queen of the West, and played guitar behind him on his Premiere LP in ’61. We also did a concert with others at the UMC Ballroom at CU in ’59, when I recorded Rosita Alvirez, a Mexican folksong. A retired Spanish teacher, I currently still work as a substitute in the Boulder schools, and play guitar there whenever the occasion demands.
“The Band Box recording Walt and I made was at a private home, (this was the home of Band Box owner Vicky Morosan). The harmonica player was named Paul, can’t recall his last name. I have a copy of the (Band Box) 45 (“Colorado Story”) and the Premiere recording (Premiere LP shown below). I saw at Arvada’s Black and Read, that there was one in a bin they were asking $7 for. I no longer have the jacket of the Exodus recording in fall ’59, but have it somewhere here on cassette tape. I still have the J-200 Gibson I used with Walt, though the BB recording was with a ’58 J-45 I sold later when I bought the 200. I believe Gary Stites and the Satellites were on Band Box, and I met Jimmy Acker, their guitar player at the Exodus. I Haven’t seen Ted Sherman in a while, and he came after (as guitar player with the Satellites), though we’ve jammed in the past 20 years on occasion.
“I do have a couple of photos of Walt and myself, mostly at Mike’s Pub, none at the Exodus, though Kai Shuman photographed us with Josh White there. Last I checked he had lost the pictures. I would have loved to brag about that. No pictures either of an all-night jam in Boulder with the late Brownie McGee.
“My son lived at 20 Skyline for 4-5 years now lives in Broomfield. He plays in a band called the Chillbillies. I just jam Wed. nights with a bunch of old timers. We actually put out a non-commercial CD called ‘Geezers Unplugged’. There are 10 of us, ranging in age from 71 to over 80. Mostly we have a lot of fun, don’t do much for money. I remember buying a Front Range cassette on one of my Black and Read visits years ago, and got several vinyls over the years.
Doing a little more searching I found information on the back of Conley’s “Passin’ Through” LP on the Premier record label in Denver: (from 1961 – “He recently completed work on “Colorado Legend”, a color, sound film made by Western Cine Productions of Denver for the Colorado Department of Public Relations. He did the narration and wrote, sang and played the music.”
Western Cine is where the Premier LP was recorded as well and may have been where Conley and Wood recorded their Band Box two Band Box singles. David is listed on the “Passin’ Through” LP on three tracks and may have accompanied on all.
Below are the recordings at Band Box and Premier where Walt and David recorded together. Conley & Woods Band Box recordings are two of the earliest records released on the label. David’s comments verify that musicians actually recorded in her home. Saints leader Dave Barhite also indicated to me that his group also at least rehearsed there – though they recorded in various studios around Denver, releasing on Band Box.