Milford Mill Swim Club

Following are the recollections of Brian Pinson ...

My parents were on the board for the swim club and we were there with a couple other families from the time the park closed to sunset. My mother was there always and she grilled like crazy. She fed a multitude of people and to this day I'll bump into someone who remembers her for her meals and graciousness. Later, my sister and I worked at the club and became life guards when we became of age. The swim club is still there to this day and operating successfully.

WCAO would start the evening with their broadcast and then the live music would take over until 11:00. The Van Dykes with Roland, Calvin, Del, Alvin and the guys played there often. Tommy Vann played there and I remember the first truck they bought from Jerry's to move the equipment. Many a night, I helped them and the others carry and wheel equipment across the bridge which spanned the entrance to the pavilion stage. I also remember Walt (Caldwell-Tommy Vann's drummer) singing Shirley Bassey's song "Rescue Me" and Doc singing Paul McCartney 's "Yesterday". Remember Scotty Cathcart of the Uptowns, who I went to high school with, mesmerizing everyone with his showmanship.

The DJ's that I recall were Jack Edwards, Kerby Scott, & Johnny Dark. I remember the other popular station at the time (possibly WFBR) tried to have some dances on Sat. nights, but they didn't go over well. I think I remember Johnny Walker spinning there. Of course, back in the day WJZ would do live broadcasts at Milford Mill, which meant Buddy Deane televised live and in Black & White. I saw many of my childhood heroes from the show up front. Remember Mary Lou Raines, Doug Constantine, Buddy Bell, Carl Parks, Charley Bledsoe, Trixie and Dixie, etc. Bledsoe was the dude who refined my scribble and taught me how to do splits.

I also recall seeing and meeting several recording artists who made appearances there, Lou Christie and Jimmy Hart to name a couple - the same Jimmy Hart who became the villain manager for the World Wrestling Federation. He was the lead singer for the Gentrys of Memphis, Tenn and they were in the area to promote their new record "Keep on Dancing".


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