Jim Drake’s Entertainment Blog: What will they say when I’m gone?

You may have noticed in the last few issues of the news I’ve been asking folks to send in Rick Hulett memories. Rick, a well-known and much-loved member of the music community, died on April 22. Rick’s five-year struggle with a rare cancer surely would test anyone’s strength and willpower — but he chose to press through the ordeal by playing music and surrounding himself with family and friends. Thanks to all who sent in your memories, I’ll devote a few columns to this throughout May, and they’ll be online, too. I think the first time I saw Rick play was in 1996, on that elevated stage at Big Horse Brew Pub, and I remember wondering, how the heck do you get your stuff up there? — Jim Drake

It’s difficult to single out a favorite memory I have of Rick Hulett. Memories spring up unexpectedly. Sometimes it is a song I hear on the radio, or I drive by a spot we played music together.

I played music with Rick on a steady basis over the last eight years. We traded emails and text messages daily on inspiring songs and musical ideas. He is my mentor, dear friend, teacher, and hero.

Here are just a few memories that spring to mind. We enjoyed a gig together on stage at the Aladdin Theater when we opened for Bettye Lavette. I cherish the memory of Rick and Bill Frisell hanging out in the recording studio last year. Rick loaned his uke to Bill, and then recorded a song with it.

I recall when Rick and I spent time with Emmylou Harris, Daniel Lanois, Brian Blade, and other world-class musicians at the Crystal Ballroom back in ‘06. We giggled like little kids for weeks after that.

Perhaps closest to my heart are the countless gigs we played together at The Pines, Solera, Everybody’s, the Trillium, and dozens of other places. We played hardware stores, libraries, dive bars, wineries, music festivals, weddings, parties, garages, back yards, random fields, and churches all over the Gorge.

I’ll miss his wisdom, humor, leadership, fire, and passion. I’ll miss his support and friendship. I’ll miss his songs and his blazing guitar work. He was a tower of a man, and I am so fortunate for witnessing his mastery, braveness, and grace.

Tim Ortlieb

Hood River

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Parkdale third graders sing "12 Disaster Days of Christmas"

Welcome to your sing-able Christmas gift list. What follows is an emergency rendition of “12 Days of Christmas” – for outfitting your home or car in case of snow storm, earthquake, flood or other emergency. Read it as a simple list, or sing it to the tune of “12 Days” – you know, as in “ … and a partridge in a pear tree…” Not to make light of it, but the song is a familiar framework for a set of gift ideas that you could consider gathering together, even if the recipient already owns items such as a bunch of coats, tire chains and flashlights. Stores throughout the Gorge are stocked up on all these items. Buying all 12 days might be prohibitive, but here are three ideas for checking any of the dozen off your list (notations follow, 1-12.) The gift items needed to stay warm, dry and safe are also coded to suggest items in your abode (A) in your car (C) or both (B). 12 Gallons of Water (A) 11 Family meals (B) 10 Cans of propane (A) 9 Hygiene bags (B) 8 Packs of batteries (A) 7 Spare coats (B) 6 Bright red flares (C) 5 Cozy blankets (B) 4 Tire chains (C) 3 Flashlights (B) 2 cell phone chargers (B) 1 And a crush-proof first aid kit (B) Price ranges? Here’s a few quotes for days Three, Two, Four and Nine: n A family gift of flashlights (three will run $15-30, Hood River Supply, Tum-A-Lum) n Cell phone chargers (two will run $30-60) n Tire chains (basic set, $30, Les Schwab, returnable if unused for the winter) n Family meals ($100 or so should cover the basics for three or four reasonably well-fed days) n The home kit should be kept in a handy place near an exit, and remember that water needs to be replenished every few months. If you have a solid first aid kit already, switch out the gift idea with “and-a-sto-o-u-t- tub-for it-all …” Otherwise, it’s a case of assembling your home or car kits and making sure all members of the family know what the resources are and how to use them (ie flares and propane). Emergency situations are at worst life-threatening, at best deeply uncomfortable if you and your family are left without power for an extended period, or traveling and find yourself in a situation where you need to wait out a storm, lengthy traffic delay, or other crisis. Notes on the 12 gift ideas: 12 – Gallons of water: that’s one per person in a four-member family to last for three days, the recommended minimum to be prepared for utility outages. 11 – Easy-open packaged goods, energy bars, dried food and nuts are good things to include for nutrition. Think of what your family of four needs for three days to stay fortified and hydrated (see number 12). Can-opener also recommended 10 – If you have a propane camping stove, keep extra fuel handy. 9 – Hygiene bags: put packaged moistened towelettes, toilet paper, and plastic ties in large garbage bags (for personal sanitation) Resource list courtesy of Hood River County Emergency Management, Barbara Ayers, manager/ 541-386-1213. The county also reminds residents to Get a Kit, Make A Plan to connect your family if separated, and Stay Informed. See www.co.hood-river.or.us to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge



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