Ranching Heritage Association to Host Andy Wilkinson's Charlie Goodnight Concert

The event is the annual fundraiser for the Ranching Heritage Association.

Written by Marsha Pfluger

A rare, 10-year reprisal of the musical “Charlie Goodnight: His Life in Poetry and Song” by Andy Wilkinson will be staged Aug. 22 at the National Ranching Heritage Center, 3121 Fourth Street in Lubbock. The event is the annual fundraiser for the Ranching Heritage Association. Activities begin with a patio reception at 7 p.m., including complimentary bar and food courts plus a silent auction and raffle. The concert will get under way at 8:15 p.m. on a full stage constructed for the event in the National Ranching Heritage Center’s historical park. The concert is comprised of more than 15 songs with full band. Poetic narration explains each song, which lead listeners through the life of the famous cattleman/trail driver. Admission is $75 each, with tables for six at $650 and for eight at $1,000. Table sponsors and underwriters will receive premier, reserved seating at the reception and concert and a copy of the “Charlie Goodnight: His Life in Poetry and Song” CD, which can be autographed by the cast that evening. Make reservations at www.nrhc.com or call Tim Bynum at the RHA, (806) 742-2498. With Wilkinson on stage and in the recorded project were talented friends who helped as vocalists, background voices and musicians bringing historic characters to life. Most of the original cast members will be back for the concert’s reprise, with a few additions. Joining with Wilkinson will be TV/movie actor Barry Corbin, singer/poet Red Steagall, Grammy Award-winning producer Lloyd Maines, historian Byron Price; plus, Kenny Maines, La Tronda Maines, Terri Hendrix, Rod Taylor, Brian Griffin, Emily Wilkinson-Arellano, Alan Munde, Donnie Maines and Richard Bowden. Goodnight (March 5, 1836 – Dec. 12, 1929) was a cattle rancher in the American West, likely the best-known rancher in the Panhandle of Texas. Essayist and historian J. Frank Dobie said that Goodnight “approached greatness more nearly than any other cowman of history.” All of the songs and poetic transitions in “Charlie Goodnight: His Life in Poetry and Song” were written by Wilkinson, who is a look-alike descendent of his distant uncle, the man who helped establish the Goodnight-Loving Trail. Goodnight ranched in the Palo Duro Canyon area, where Wilkinson staged the first-ever showing of his now-classic musical. Material for the musical comes from true stories of Goodnight’s life, real events and people of the West, white, black and red, who were his friends. More than drawing inspiration from these stories, Wilkinson thoroughly researched each song and poem, making personal trips to the same places where Goodnight traveled, lived and worked. He devoted hours to research in a number of libraries and museums and conducted interviews with people who had an affiliation with Goodnight. Last staged at the NRHC in August 1999, the concert was accompanied by a CD and book, both of which reaped numerous awards. In all, the project is unique in the world of music. CONTACT: Marsha Pfluger, National Ranching Heritage Center, at (806) 742-0498 or marsha.pfluger@ttu.edu or Andy Wilkinson at (806) 777-7851 or andy.wilkinson@ttu.edu.