Coordinated by Glenn J. Pogatchnik,
"The Ambassador of The Bakersfield Sound"

E-mail: Glenn

Click for More on the Bakersfield Sound ...

  • A Merle Haggard Photo Page

    Here are two of Bakersfield's best guitarists Roy Nichols and Gene Moles visiting together at Roy's home. Photo courtesy of Barry Keen.

    This picture is Frankie Lemon on drums performing on the stage of Democrat Hot Springs which at the time was owned by fiddle maestro Oscar Whittington. Frankie played with many of the Bakersfield Pioneers and occassionally with Merle Haggard who would come up to jam from his home on the mouth of the Kern River. Photo courtesty of Frankie's son Ted Lemon.

    Here's a great picture sent to us from Owe Roslund of Trangsviken, Sweden

  • L to R: Delbert Smart - Merle Haggard - Tiny Sullivan. This picture was taken circa 1956 on the stage of San Quentin while Merle and Delbert who grew up with Merle in Oildale. I was talking to Merle the other day and he acknowledged that Delbert is one of the most gifted guitar players he's ever known. Delbert taught Merle a bunch of guitar licks. Later after Merle and Delbert did their time and were released from San Quentin ... Delbert played three songs on Merle's first album "All My Friends Are Gonna Be Strangers." The three songs Delbert played on were "Please Mr. DJ", "All My Friends Are Gonna Be Strangers" and "I'd Trade All Of My Tomorrows." Recently Delbert had a stroke which has left him disabled unable to play guitar. What a shame .... What a waste ... Glenn

    Sonny Langley circa 1951. Sonny was the 1951 Flyweight Champion and State Champion of the fine state of New Jersey. He was also a finalist in the 1951 Golden Gloves competition held in New Jersey. Another interesting fact that with fellow musician Ron Underwood also living in New Jersey. Sonny played guitar on a session called "Long Walk Home" on Prestige/Columbia records that sold over four million copies. Sonny said he just took the session fee on that song. Also while in the Navy Sonny had an altercation going AWOL and spent five months in prison where he met of all people Delbert Smart from Bakersfield and childhood friend of Merle Haggard who was in the same Navy prison. Delbert and Sonny became steadfast friends and had a connection with their love of Country Music and boxing. As we've said before Delbert played lead guitar on three cuts of Merle Haggard's first album. Delbert (68 years old) is currently serving time in a Texas prison. Merle told me on the phone at home that Delbert was possibly one of the most gifted guitarists he knew. Sonny and Merle are good friends and talk to each other on the phone every couple of days. Sonny just recently wrote a new song for Merle. Sonny is retired and currently resides in Bakersfield,Ca with his lovely wife Mildred. Occassionally we coax him to perform at various benefits and shows in and around Bakersfield. We are having a benefit/tribute for Sonny tentatively scheduled December 5, 2004 at Trouts Nightclub in Bakersfield. We will soon have a bio on Sonny describing all his famous friends that he either wrote songs for or toured with such as Hank Snow, Marty Robbins, Jim Reeves, Elvis Presley, Zeb Turner (lead guitar player for Hank Williams Sr.) Webb Pierce, Hank Thompson, Roy Acuff and many many more. -Glenn P.

    The mighty Norm Hamlett (pedal steel guitar player for Merle)

    Don Redfield's band in the mid 70's
    Left to right: Mark Mower (who committed suicide soon after this picture was taken), Millie Redfield and Don Redfield. In the background, Alan Feves.

    This picture was taken in 1954 at a club called "Frank Dailey's Meadowbrook" in Cedar Grove, NJ.
    Hank was 40 and Sonny was 20 yrs. old.











    L to R: Bob Shockley - Gene Moles - Bill Woods - Johnny Barnett

    Standing L to R: Lewis Talley and Red Simpson
    Sitting L to R: Tommy Dee - Bonnie Owens - Fuzzy Owens



    Click here: Mark Yearly The Lone Stranger from Nashville West - a Feature of The Phantom Tollbooth

    L to R: Glenn J. Pogatchnik - Sonny Langley - Bill Woods

    Special "Thanks" to Toby Rider for providing graphics storage space.

    E-mail: Glenn Pogatchnik