Buck saw it as on-the-job training. I remember
thinkin that I could probably make about $5 if Id go
out and pick cotton all day. And I could make $5 dollars bein
in this honky-tonk the guy will give me $5 a night, and Ill
be in here where its warm in the winter and cool in the summertime.
That was my way of lookin at it.
After a time, Buck met Mac MacAtee, a Mesa gas station owner
who played country records for an hour each afternoon over a PA
system; the music was broadcast simultaneously over local radio.
MacAtee organized a live band, Macs
Skillet Lickers, to perform at the station. Buck played steel
guitar and eventually met Bonnie Campbell, an aspiring singer who
became part of the Skillet Lickers. At the time they were married,
on January 13, 1948, she was four months pregnant with their first
son. Alan Edgar Owens, better known as Buddy, was born
on May 22, 1948. Michael Lynn Owens, their second son, was born
on March 8, 1950.
Buck was not yet supporting his family solely by playing music.
He also drove trucks for a while. In the clubs, he became friendly
with a fellow trucker and aspiring singer named Marty Robinson,
who sang Eddy Arnold songs in area honky-tonks as Marty Robbins.
When Buck played at Phoenixs Astor Hotel, Marty, also a steel
guitarist, sat in while Buck sang Hank Williams songs. --
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