The Night Big Al Hogan Died

The Night Big Al Hogan Died

The Night Big Al Hogan Died

by Chuck RitenouR 10-13-2K3

verse 1:

Big Al Hogan was the leader of the band

singing at the lodges and lovin' them one night stands

Big Al had a lovely wife and a girl friend on the side

They met for the first time the night Big Al Hogan died.

verse 2:

We were playin' at the county fair one hot August night

He ate a dozen hot dogs and them dogs began to fight

So he drank a pint of whiskey to chase away the pain

and when we took the stage, he was feelin' right as rain

chorus:

On the night Big Al Hogan died,

his wife and his girl friend both rushed to his side

they said it was a heart attack did Mister Hogan in

guess he'd rather die than face his wife and his girl friend.

verse 3:

Big Al lived his life like a country music star

He said, "boys you'll always be... who they think you are."

You gotta give it to him, he sure was right that time.

Cause they laid Big Al to rest right next to Patsy Cline.

chorus:

On the night Big Al Hogan died,

his wife and his girl friend both rushed to his side

they said it was a heart attack did Mister Hogan in

guess he'd rather die than face his wife and his girl friend.

the end.

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Comments 44 comments

Sa`ge profile image

Sa`ge 6 years ago from Barefoot Island

I like this one, got a chuckle out of me. :D


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Chuck RitenouR 6 years ago from Front Royal, Virginia Author

Sa'ge,

this is a true story. Nine women wore black and wept at his funeral. He was laid to rest in Winchester, Virginia within a few feet of Patsy Cline's grave.


Sa`ge profile image

Sa`ge 6 years ago from Barefoot Island

I think I heard about his story because what you just said giggles my memory somewhat.


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Chuck RitenouR 6 years ago from Front Royal, Virginia Author

In the northern Shenandoah Valley, Big Al was larger than life. Someone should write his life story....


Buffalo 6 years ago

A blunt story in the song.

Al was dead of a heart attack before he hit the ground. Can't remember what he was singing...whether it was his Tom Jones imitation, Chubby Checker's "Twist" or an Elvis imitation.

Al used to come by WWOO/WAPP always wanting his songs played. And we played 'em.

Still have an Al Hogan tape. Al's manager Bobby Carter recorded them from 45's and such on his home stereo and sold them out of his barber shop in downtown Winchester.

After he died his fans couldn't quite understand why...if they named a street after Patsy Cline (and what a struggle THAT was)...why wouldn't they name a street after Al?

Country soul memories, dude.


Buffalo 6 years ago

And in honor of remembering Al I have uploaded "Like Always," "The Key That Fits Her Door," and "That's What I Call a Woman" to my ipod.


Chuck RitenouR profile image

Chuck RitenouR 6 years ago from Front Royal, Virginia Author

Big Al was a "living legend" and "larger than life" in our neck of the woods. In retrospect, I probably should have changed his name and will more than likely do so should I ever record it. Big Al once walked into a club where we were playing, got up on stage with us and said, "I'm hiring the whole band". We were stunned. That was the first time any of us had heard of "Big Al". He then proceeded to sing four or five songs. He shook our hands and drove off into the night in that big ole caddy of his. Every time, I think of him I smile.


Buffalo 6 years ago

In many years you are one of the VERY few who remember Al on the internet and remember him well. A salute to you sir.

He was an "interesting" fellow.

I should have kept the autographed photo of him that was in my office at the radio station but it got lost somewhere along the journey.

But I still have that tape!

Thanks for the posting Mr. Chuck.


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Chuck RitenouR 6 years ago from Front Royal, Virginia Author

Buffalo,

Among the musicians in the northern Shenandoah Valley the memory of Big Al Hogan lives on. Thank you for your comments.


April Hogan 5 years ago

Hey. How do you Know Al? He was my Uncle. My Dad George Hogan & my Uncle Benny were his Brothers. Do u have a email or something. I think it would be pretty nice to learn how u knew him. and my dad would probably like to get to know you & talk to you more about it. I searched up info about Al and i came along this Post. We thought this post was very intersting & would love to know more. He died on stage performing Chubby Checkers "The Twist".


Tracey Hogan 5 years ago

Thanks for the tribute!! It was very nice to stumble upon this in a google search for my uncle!! i was explaining to a friend that he had been burried right next to patsy cline, so i decided to search it and see what i found. April Hogan up there ^ is my younger sister, we're two of Al's MANY nieces! It was in fact Chubby Checkers that he was playing at the time. He was very young when he passed, so i never had the chance to meet him :( I'm glad to see that his fan base was wider than just his immediate family and i'm sure my father will enjoy this tune when he gets home shortly! thanks again -Tracey


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Chuck RitenouR 5 years ago from Front Royal, Virginia Author

To Family, Friends and Fans of Big Al Hogan,

I wrote this many years ago. I thought several times of changing the name and thus the title of the song. I knew of Big Al years before I met him and "the Valley" is not a better place without him. If you should see any disrespect in this "tribute" it was not intentional nor ever meant to reflect such. Everyone I ever spoke with loved the man.


Tracey 5 years ago

In no way were we offended! Feel free to contact me at any time! Thogan91@aol.com


Lisa Hogan  5 years ago

Dear Chuck Ritenour,

My name is Lisa Hogan, I am the oldest daughter of George (Bruno)Hogan. I live in Front Royal VA. I want to say I love the song and Im speaking for my dad as well. Definately not offended by the song. Al was Al and it was Al's way or no way and he was a very determinded,stubburn, down to heart, good ole country boy who knew how to have a good time. Thanks for all you have done. We all miss Al so very much. As 2010 ends and 2011 begins, lets celebrate tonight for the memories of Al Hogan and the wonderful person that he was. Rest in Al and We will always love you. I have pictures ans things of Al's if you would ever like to meet I'm just around the corner. Wish you well and thanks for not forgetting Al. Maybe me and my Dad could catch you at Rainbow Road Sometime......


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Chuck RitenouR 5 years ago from Front Royal, Virginia Author

Tracy & Lisa,

Thank you for your kind comments. It would be a pleasure to meet you sometime. There will be a cd release party at the Lucky Star, main St. Front Royal on the 21st of January....maybe you can make it there.

Chuck


Lisa Hogan  5 years ago

Sounds great Chuck, I'll check my work schedule and hopefully I can make it there.

LMH


Samantha 5 years ago

hey chuck! im the youngest of AL Hogans Daughters.. i would love to hear what you know about my dad...my email is redhots1313d@yahoo.com.. thanks


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Chuck RitenouR 5 years ago from Front Royal, Virginia Author

Samantha,

Two of your cousins are friends on my FB site...follow me there. Perhaps, your uncles would like to discuss writing a book about your Dad.


Brenda "Hogan" Davis 5 years ago

I am Al Hogan's Sister,

In my Heart he will "ALWAYS BE A STAR"

Al Hogan was Born July 22, 1947 and died August 1st 1986

He was one of Eleven Children (9 boys, 3 girls)

I could go on and on...but i'll save that for another time...To his Family he was known as Allen


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Chuck RitenouR 5 years ago from Front Royal, Virginia Author

Brenda,

Thanks for dropping by and for your comment.

Chuck


raecy 5 years ago

the 1st. songs on the tape like always that's what i call a woman the key that fits her door were recorded in nashville at hiitop studios and tommy hill was the producer..like always was pulled for his first record.


wiggy 5 years ago

before you get on a board you should get your facts straight. bobby carter was a great promoter of al . he had things lined up for al to go places. i am not offened i like things to be correct


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Chuck RitenouR 5 years ago from Front Royal, Virginia Author

raecy & wiggy,

thanks for droppin' by and taking the time to leave comments.

Chuck


Buffalo 5 years ago

When you put a cassette in a cassette player and the song on the cassette is preceded by the sound of the needle of a record player being put on a record...that's a HOME recorded cassette. I know...I have the Al Hogan cassette Bobby sold out of his barber shop in Winchester.

I'm not calling into question WHERE the ACTUAL SONGS were recorded.

I'm saying the CASSETTE that was recorded for sale by Bobby was recorded via microphone as in microphone of cassette recorder held to the speakers of a stereo system, not through input jacks and such.

I thought it was very "down home" and did not write such a comment to cast aspersions on Al Hogan or Bobby Carter.

Before commenting on a board one should not assume that comments are a personal attack. Maybe something needs a bit more explanation rather than being labled incorrect.


Buffalo 5 years ago

Now...I'm not offended, just want things to be correct.


Chuck RitenouR profile image

Chuck RitenouR 5 years ago from Front Royal, Virginia Author

Buffalo,

Thanks for dropping by and commenting.

In the 70's when cassettes were the rage, it was very common to receive one acetate record of your recording from recording studios. Then you had to take it somewhere else have it copied to cassette and packaged to sell. I recorded one at Deep South Studios in Nashville in 1981. It cost a small fortune and I never had it mass produced. I have never heard Big Al's recording, but it sounds as if they were simply trying to save a few bucks.


Buffalo 5 years ago

WWOO/WAPP gave airplay to Big Al..."Like Always," "That's What I Call a Woman," "The Key That Fits Her Door" and "He Didn't Become Famous for His Song" are the ones we played. Would've like to have played his parody song "Running Bare" off the cassette but the vocals border on the unintelligible.

I'd almost bet Q102 never played any of Big Al's stuff.

We also played a single..."Leavin'"... by a Waynesboro singer Red Steed. He was on that CMT TV show that had Jim Ed Brown as the host but Red didn't win the episode...that would've been around 1987.


Chuck RitenouR profile image

Chuck RitenouR 5 years ago from Front Royal, Virginia Author

Buffalo,

as an award winning songwriter, I know how difficult it is to have the "local" stations play your material. Big Al suffered from being a "local" artist.

Chuck


Indian Lew  5 years ago

When I was about 9yrs. old....Me, Al and a bunch of other boys used to run together. Al was born in 47 so that would make him 2yrs. older than me. The town was Yorkshire, Just south of Manassas Virginia on Bull Run Creek.....Believe me, I could write a book on our exploits...We had a rope swing over the creek and spent hours in that swimming hole!! Does anyone remember the scar on the side of his face...Maybe I'll tell the story about that later ....If I remember correctly, Allen (as we called him) lived with his Grandmother? Anyway, Our childhood was stuff they write movie's about...What a time we had!! Indian Lew


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Chuck RitenouR 5 years ago from Front Royal, Virginia Author

Indian Lew,

It was great to hear from you. I would certainly like to read about Big Al's early years. I hope you'd considering putting them on HubPages. Maybe, we could get together and talk sometime. Thanks for dropping by and leaving your comment.

Chuck


Indian Lew 5 years ago

Chuck, This weekend, I'll think about some of the things did.....And next week Maybe I can come up with a story or two.....I can't tell everything....lol....Indian Lew


Chuck RitenouR profile image

Chuck RitenouR 5 years ago from Front Royal, Virginia Author

Thanks Indian Lew....


Buffalo 5 years ago

What a good thing you've done, Chuck.

For years I looked for references for Al Hogan on the internet.

Most of which were "who is the man buried near Patsy Cline?"

Now through your postings memories of Al live in the age of the internet.

What a good thing.


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Chuck RitenouR 5 years ago from Front Royal, Virginia Author

Buffalo,

It is my hope that the memories and comments keep coming from those who knew him.

Chuck


DuchessDuCaffeine 5 years ago

Gotta love folks who drink up every drop of life like it was an open bar at someone else's wedding! I'll bet he finished his last song at the Gates of Heaven and St. Peter backed him up for an encore :)


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Chuck RitenouR 5 years ago from Front Royal, Virginia Author

DuchessDuCaffeine,

Big Al was as big as everyone thought he was.....He is buried next to Patsy Cline.


J.W. 5 years ago

the only info I have found on internet on Al Hogan, saw his burial site next to Patsy Cline. What an honor for him, I thought, this must have been quite a man.


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Chuck RitenouR 5 years ago from Front Royal, Virginia Author

J.W.,

Thanks for dropping by and leaving a comment. Big Al was an amazing personality.


tobusiness profile image

tobusiness 3 years ago from Bedfordshire, U.K

What a small world this is!...lovely song, great story.


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Chuck RitenouR 3 years ago from Front Royal, Virginia Author

tobusiness,

In this "neck of the woods", Big Al was larger than life.

Thanks for dropping by and commenting.


Chuck RitenouR profile image

Chuck RitenouR 3 years ago from Front Royal, Virginia Author

This an update. Recently, I received a message from John Bracken, Shenandoah Valley resident and currently the sound engineer for the Beach Boys 2013 tour. He was telling Randal, the Beach Boys bass player about Big Al Hogan and googled the name. Of course this song came up on the search. Apparently, they both enjoyed it enough to take the time to message me. In short fellow "hubbers", your writing may be seen any time by anybody.


PotatoesBrowning 2 years ago

I was just watching "It Ain't City Music" on folkstreams.net and saw about 8 seconds of a real interesting guy who introduced himself as Al Hogan from Lorton, VA "MR RUNNING BARE". He seemed so intriguing that I had to google him. And I found this page. Very glad I did. Sorry not to have known him or known of him ( or this music scene ) until now. Thank you Chuck.


Audrey Kidwell profile image

Audrey Kidwell 2 years ago from The Plains, Virginia

Al Hogan was my uncle also and there is no offense taken or disrespect from this song. Its how he lived. I'm sure all our family agrees, its a tribute to him. I remember listening to his records growing up. I haven't heard his music since. All his records my mom, his sister had were destroyed in a fire in 94. I hope to get some of his music from family, friends or fans. I would be so grateful. Thank Chuck for writing, posting and remembering my Uncle Al


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Chuck RitenouR 2 years ago from Front Royal, Virginia Author

PotatoesBrowning & Audrey Kidwell,

Thank you for dropping by and taking the time to leave your comments. I am always surprised to see comments on this piece. Thank you both, very much.

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