"The Cold Comfort Newsletter"

Merry Christmas '09!


More than you expect .... less than you desire!

Published once in a while by . . . . .

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Check out our new and improved website at Colemans Civil War . Com
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In This Issue .....

  • "Lemonade from Lemons"
  • "Touched By Fire" Redux
  • "Back to Our Roots"
  • "Christmas at the East Clackamas Country Club"
  • "The Good News Gospel String Band" ...
  • Wow! The Rockets have really caught on with "Christmas Greetings"
  • Yes, the old and vernable, Corby Plantation House is off the market!

Click here to view these stories from previous issues .....

  • "And the Hits Just Keep Coming!"
  • "Touched By Fire"
  • I'm dreaming of a white Christmas"
  • "The Good News Gospel String Band" ...
  • Wow! The Rockets have really caught on! So, "Blast Off!"
  • The old and vernable, Corby Plantation House!

  

look.jpg""Lemonade from Lemons"". . .We live in changing times to be sure. Carla and I have always tried to remain optimistic and adaptable regardless of our circumstances. So, while touring the U.S. with our Civil War programs seems impossible in the imediate future, the Lord always opens new challenges and opportunities. Here are a few of the things we have been working on ...

performance.jpg"Touched By Fire!" Redux ... We were accepted by the Oregon Council for the Humanities "Chautauqua" program in 2001. "Taps: The Civil War In Word and Song," our initial submission, quickly became the most popular program in the council's history, followed by "The Last Rose," and "The Haunting War." Our fourth presentation, "Touched By Fire" was finished in time to submit to the council for the upcoming 2009 season. So, you can imagine our shock and disappointment when the Oregon Council for the Humanities announced a completely “new Chautauqua” known as the “The Conversation Project” series.

While our “Touched By Fire” performances have been less frequent with this unexpected decision by the Oregon Council for the Humanities, we intend to schedule some very special dates of our own in the coming year. We’ll commemorate the anniversary of “the wah” this April with a performance at Woodburn Christian Church. In addition, we have scheduled a program at the Tillamook Public Library for May 27th. We hope to again perform for the Northwest Civil War Council at their annual 4th of July reenactment at Willamette Mission State Park near Keizer, Oregon. All presentations will be free to the public, yet at some we ask a "free will" offering to help with expenses. We’ll try to keep everyone posted as these dates get closer.

House.jpg""Back to Our Roots" ... Our Civil War Theater and Music grew from our initial involvement in the reenacting community. So, when our schedule allowed more time closer to home we took the hiatus to return to our reenacting family. This round brought an opportunity to explore a whole new impression. Joining the "69th New York Volunteer Infantry" opened an entirely new reenacting experience to us. Once a small band of misfits, the 69th's ranks have swelled over the year to become one of the larger, more polished units in the NCWC. We wear our Irish roots on our sleeves with pride, and take part in parades and living history demonstrations in addition to full scale reenactments.

House.jpg""Christmas at the East Clackamas Country Club" ...There’s no snow in the forecast this year … Thank Goodness! Carla and I plan to spend the season with family here in the cozy comfort of our “East Clackamas Country Club.” We’re talking about a road trip this spring to a warmer climate … perhaps even to the Eastern battlefields with our grandson, Stone. Meanwhile you can find me on the golf course, and Carla turning our little house into a dream home.

GospelCvr.jpg "The Good News Gospel String Band" ... My job as Worship Director has been very fulfilling, and rewarding as we bring the marvelous gospel music that has been a huge influence upon our lives to the Saints at Woodburn Christian Church. About once a month the string band gets together for a fun concert around our local area. Our "Gospel Jamboree" in August was a sellout, and our "Sounds of the Season" concert this past December brought a great gathering of folks from all around the Willamette Valley. If you enjoy old fashioned gospel music as much as we do, why not check out our CD, "Front Porch Songs!" This is a toe tappin' blend of eleven old and new gospel favorites all recorded in one session. That's why we call it "almost live!"

Rockets.gifWow! The Rockets have really caught on! ...A full schedule of monthly dances, and summer fairs and festivals have given way to a busy winter schedule of Christmas parties and Valentine dances. We'll be at the Woodburn Arts Center coming in February, and a special 4th of July picnic in Canby, Oregon. Check out our new website: "Billyandtherockets.com," Our schedule is filling up fast with weekly dances, etc. We are currently booking the summer months at fairs and festivals. If you remember "Poodle skirts" and "Hound Dogs;" "Drive In Movies" with "Peggy Sue;" "Hula-Hoops" and "Purple People Eaters;" then Billy & the Rockets is the band for you. We play rockabilly and doo-wop music popularized between the years of 1949-1959. It's great fun for the whole family! Call me at 503-981-7547 for booking information.

XmasCvr.jpg "Christmas Greetings" by Billy & the Rockets featuring "The Rockettes" is a collection of our favorite Christmas hits from the '50's & '60's. Just click on the title to get your very own "Christmas Greetings" CD and listen to a few song samples. You can't have this much Christmas fun for $10, and I'll pay the postage!

Clackamas.jpgYes, the old and vernable, Corby Plantation House is off the market! We've decided to rent our old home for $1K per month. If living in an historic three bedroom, two bath, "Italianate Victorian" located on a one third acre lot with fruit trees in a quiet historical neighborhood in the center of a small suburban community near Portland, Oregon appeals to you, or someone you know ... Give me a call at 503 981 7547 and I'll get you all the details.

woody.jpgWe wish you a Merry Christmas! .... Well that's about all for now ... please say a prayer for us as we hold you in our thoughts ... until we meet again ...
May our Lord, Jesus Christ bless you this Christmas, and through out the new year! ....
Bill and Carla ....

Santa.jpg Santa says, "Check out these historical favorites!"


  Haunting War Cover

The Haunting War
featuring:
The Haunting War, Billy Barlow, On To Richmond,Flora (The Lilly Of the West), The Wild Rover, Oh, Burning Youth, Away Here In Texas, Along the Rappahannock, John Harrolson, The Cumberland and the Merrimac, Annie Laurie, Booth Shot Lincoln, Jolly Came Riding, The Unreconstructed,The Old Soldier, Hard Times Come Again No More

  CD $15

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Available only in CD format

HWCvr.jpg"The Haunting War" is a collection of original and historic Civil War songs and readings inspired by reminiscences that simply would not allow the great war of the 19th century to drift away through the veil of time. Each of the selections and readings have been carefully assembled to demonstrate the many ways in which the Civil War touches our lives both then and now. A must for anyone who feels the deep emotion of the Civil War as intensly today as those who lived it then.


  DVD Cover

The Civil War Remembered
featuring:
Selected scenes from our theatrical presentations: "Taps," "The Last Rose," and "The Haunting War"! Plus, interviews and extended scenes. An excellent way to get a feel for our live programs right in the comfort of your own home.

  DVD $15

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Available only in DVD format

HWTitle.jpg Our New DVD! ..... Yes, Bill and Carla have finally made it to the "small screen" ... sort of. We've been thinking for some time about releasing a video tape of our programs. However, production costs and indecision over format, and content kept getting in the way of actually going into the studio. All that changed when I was approached by an old friend, now in charge of our local community access cable channel searching for free programming. A very attractive deal was struck and before long we were in the studio, performing excerpts from all three of our productions.

We originally intended to simply produce a demo DVD to help sell our live presentations. But the packaging and presentation value turned out so well that we decided to offer the DVD to the general public as part of our product line. Titled, "Civil War Remembrances" it includes interviews, selected scenes and music from each of our presentations; "Taps"; "The Last Roses" and "The Haunting War." Since this is intended to help sell our live programs, you won't get the entire production ... this is just a sampler. But there is enough to whet your appetite for more.

It comes in an easy to mail, slim line case with eye catching graphics. The entire production is very professional from start to finish, and shows some of our best material. If you want a nice keepsake of our presentations, you really need to order "Civil War Remembrances" on DVD.


  

Tenting Tonight
Campfire Songs of the Civil War
This collection is currently out of stock!
Look for a revised collection featuring vocal and guitar only coming soon:

The Bonnie Blue Flag,Lorena, Goober Peas, Tenting On the Old Camp Ground, Abraham's Daughter, Battlefield Hymn, "The Sullivan Baleau Letter," The Battlecry of Freedom, Just Before the Battle, Mother, Marching Through Georgia, Aura Lea, "Miss Molly Vandenberg Letter, "Capt. John Anderson's Battlefield Observations," American Trilogy

  Tenting Cover   CD $15

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Available only in CD format.

 



Tentingcvr2.jpgAn Old Friend in new clothes ..... Every story has to have a beginning, and our's began around 1993. With a year of reenacting under our belts, and facing a rather dull winter, we thought of recording a collection of some of our favorite Civil War songs. The first few copies of "Tenting Tonight" were only intended for our reenacting family as belated Christmas presents, but its popularity grew so quickly by the following year that we decided to have a few tapes printed professionally. Not satisfied with only an audio tape, and wanting a family project, I called upon the talents of my actress wife, Carla, to help expand the musical collection to the stage under the same title.

Our first production hit the boards in the spring of 1995. "Tenting Tonight" included a cast of five actors: our two sons, Sean and Jason; a young friend from my artillery battery, Tom Bahde; Carla, holding down the only female role, and myself. After a multitude of revisions, the original presentation evolved into our current production, "Taps." And, our original "Tenting Tonight" tape was shelved for several years while we moved on to other recording projects.

However, "Tenting Tonight," with a line up of the very best, standard Civil War songs that thrilled us when we were first getting interested in the Civil War, has refused to die. .... songs like:

  • "The Bonnie Blue Flag"
  • "Lorena"
  • "Goober Peas"
  • "Tenting On the Old Camp Ground"
  • "Abraham's Daughter"
  • "Battlefield Hymn"
  • "Motherless Child/The Sullivan Baleau Letter"
  • "The Battlecry of Freedom"
  • "Just Before the Battle, Mother"
  • "Marching Through Georgia"
  • "Aura Lea"
  • "Miss Mollie Vandenberg Letter"
  • "Capt. John Anderson's Battlefield Observations"
  • "American Trilogy (Dixie/The Battle Hymn of the Republic/All My Trials)"

Of course, some of these titles appear on our later collections. But, these early recordings of our favorites hold a casual charm lacking on our more polished releases .... for example: "Goober Peas" features both sons, Sean and Jason, singing in the background. (That's Jason's enthusiastic "war-hoop!") A very sparse, no frills arrangement of "Tenting On the Old Campground" makes this version especially touching; "Abraham's Daughter" "American Trilogy" and "Marching Through Georgia" have a particular "smoky campfire" flavor.

The real jewels on "Tenting Tonight" are the songs you will find no where else in our repertoire. "The Bonnie Blue Flag," "Lorena," "The Battlecry of Freedom," "Just Before the Battle, Mother," and "Aura Lea" appear for the first and only time. The entire collection is further enhanced by the haunting "Battlefield Hymn," and touching excerpts from the letters of Sullivan Baleau, Mollie Vandenberg, and John Anderson.

We are proud to finally present a fully re-mixed and re-mastered "Tenting Tonight: Campfire Songs of the Civil War" on CD, with the belief that the collection comprises an essential primer of popular Civil War music.

bugler.jpg Click here to view previous issues of the "Cold Comfort Newsletter"

This May Sound Crazy!  I said it once and I'll say it again!!   More than ever, we want you to experience, share and enjoy our recordings with your friends and family.  So, we encourage you to copy any of our recordings and give them to those you think would enjoy them.   That's right ... We're asking you to make copies of our selections and give them away.  You might ask why in the world are we doing this? ... Well, Carla and I feel that the more people who hear us, the more who will attend one of our live performances.   We enjoy our concerts and performances of "Taps", "The Haunting War", and "The Last Rose" so much that we feel if you have a listen to what we do in the studio, it just might encourage you to come out and see us in person.  Also, if you like what you hear, you might be motivated to buy some of our other realeases.  We consider it good advertising ...

So go ahead ... you have our permission to copy and give away our stuff ... but don't let us catch you selling them or else you'll be in big, big trouble!

Well, that's about all the news from this end ..... Remember us in your prayers, and also remember our service personel both here and abroad.  We hope to see you soon ......

Your friends;

Bill & Carla Coleman,
Cold Comfort Productions,
304 E. Clackamas Circle
Woodburn, OR 97071,
(503) 981-7547

Email us at: wcoleman@oregonsbest.com

Check our website at:
colemanscivilwar.com
billyandtherockets.com
colemansrock.com

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