Great Music For Dancing At Fun Evening

DJ's Music Trivia



Byron and Coyla McKean at last year’s Black and White Ball.

This Saturday night the Mazatzal Casino is hosting one of Rim Country’s most elegant affairs — the eighth annual Black and White Ball, sponsored by the Mogollon Health Alliance.

Another large group of supporters should be on hand.

“This year, we’re expecting more than 150 people to attend our ‘Celebrate the Glamour of Vintage Hollywood’ evening,” said Sanja Long, alliance director.

“It should really be a fun affair. People will come either in formal wear or in the actual attire of vintage Hollywood.”

All of the proceeds from this elegant benefit will go to the Rim Country Educational Foundation, the group that is spearheading the effort to bring a four-year university to Payson.

As always, the 21-piece, Phoenix-based band, Sonoran Swing, will provide the evening’s entertainment, with Payson Realtor Gary Cordell and Mary Gilbert as the featured vocalists.

Sonoran Swing got its start in the Valley in the mid-1990s, when it was originally called the Motorola Dance Band. The group was formed as a goodwill gesture by the Motorola Company to help Arizona not-for-profit organizations raise money through dance events.

“Our band’s core songs are the standards of the 1920s, ’30s and ’40s,” said Gary, “but we also like to mix in some Beatles, Frank Sinatra and even some of the hits of the group Chicago.

“Those who attend the Black and White Ball this Saturday can expect to hear songs such as Glenn Miller’s “In the Mood,” Les Brown’s “Sentimental Journey,” Chick Webb’s “Stompin’ at the Savoy” and my favorite song to sing, ….”

This week’s question

Can you name the song Gary most likes to sing — one that will sure to delight the Saturday night crowd at this year’s Black and White Ball?

Hint: Gary’s best-loved song is by crooner Tony Bennett and was one of the top hits of 1962. It was selected as the Grammy Song of the Year and later was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.

Is this song A) “Kansas City,” B) “Sweet Home Chicago,” C) Amarillo by Morning,” or D) “I Left My Heart in San Francisco”?

If you are the fifth caller and have the correct answer, you’ll win a greatest hits CD by your choice of artist or genre. Good luck!

Last week’s question

Sadly, last week we said goodbye to Phil Everly, half of the popular 1950s-60s duo, the Everly Brothers, who recently passed away at the age of 74.

Last week’s question asked if you could name the song that was not a No. 1 hit for this Rock & Roll Hall of Fame duo. The choices were A) “Wake Up Little Susie,” B) “All I Have to do is Dream,” C) “That’ll be the Day,” or D) “Cathy’s Clown.”

The correct answer was “That’ll be the Day,” which was a No. 1 hit for Buddy Holly in 1957.

Congratulations to this past week’s first-time music trivia winner, Payson’s Dennis Bence.

Dennis was born in Duluth, Minn. and raised in nearby Carlton. After graduating from Carlton High School in 1961, he began a 22-year career with the U.S. Navy, where he became an on-board interior communications technician.

During his stint with the Navy, Dennis met and married his wife, Tive, at his station in Honolulu. They have been married for 38 years; have six children, 18 grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.

“Following the Navy and after living in Seattle and then in the Valley, Tive and I bought a house in Payson in 2004 and then moved here permanently in 2007. We just love everything about the area here,” said Dennis.

Now retired, Dennis’ interests are spending as much time as he can with his grandchildren and doing work for his church, Ponderosa Baptist. He enjoyed fishing and golfing in his younger days.

Dennis told me he likes all types of music, except rap, but especially country western and 1960s and ’70s oldies. His favorite artists are Roy Orbison, Elvis Presley and George Strait.

A Final Note

If you’ve been down to our beautiful Green Valley Park anytime within the last couple of years, you’ve probably noticed that the lake’s shoreline has seriously eroded and the cattails and other reeds have taken over about two-thirds of the banks.

As you might expect in this still downturned economy, our town does not have the financial resources to combat the shoreline problem. I think that, just maybe, if we pull together, we might be able to help. Grass roots (no pun intended) might be the solution.

If you benefit from Green Valley Park in any way, call me. Let’s get all of us together who care about our wonderful community resource and talk about what we can do help turn around this eroding condition and return the shoreline to what it was just a few short years ago.

Have a great Rim Country week!

DJ Craig, (928) 468-1482, Web site:


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