still popular with fans
pianist plans to release a new CD
MADISON, Ind. (June 2005) Don Youngblood of Madison,
Ind., began playing music before his feet could reach the peddles on
his familys piano.
Youngblood began his music career after co-workers at
the Charlestown, Ind., Powder Plant heard his rendition of Elvis
Blue Christmas at the 1963 company Christmas party. They
encouraged him to aim high and even helped him raise the money to record
his first single, Window Pane, in 1964. The recording took
place at Jewel Recording Studio in Cincinnati and became a regional
hit, said Youngblood, 63.
Youngblood didnt stop there. Hes recorded 14 albums and
plans to record his 15th this summer. Lee Neely, who owns Sunnyside
Recording Studio in Hanover, Ind., and occasionally accompanies Youngblood
on guitar, plans to record Youngbloods new album this summer.
Neely planned to open his recording studio in Clarksville or Jeffersonville,
but decided to set up shop in Jefferson County after Youngblood suggested
Neely says Youngblood is a helluva songwriter and that hes
still got it. Youngblood plans to redo some of his previously
released songs for the new album, such as Window Pane, Newly
Made Grave and Dreams. The album will also include
a few cover songs and the rest will be new releases, he
said. Youngbloods mother wrote Newly Made Grave, and
it is an especially meaningful song to him.
During the 1970s, Youngblood worked with a booking agent from Midwest
Productions and had the opportunity to play with such big names as Dicky
Lee, Billy Crash Craddock and Bobby Helms. In the 1990s, he played with
Stonewall Jackson and Faron Young.
Youngblood played all over Indiana, Kentucky and Ohio. Unlike
his older brother, Robert, who played at Shipleys Tavern for 13
years, Youngblood enjoyed the traveling life and playing new gigs.
After retiring for health reasons in 2000, Youngblood now plays only
at private parties and some clubs upon special request. In summer 2004,
Youngblood played for Cheryl Campbells surprise 60th birthday
He had my ole piano jumpin, said Campbell. Her husband,
Tom, who hired Youngblood for the party, was in the Madison High School
Class of 1959 with Youngblood. Campbell said Youngblood was fantastic
and that he played a variety of music and could play anything
by ear. Youngblood made the party very personal by
inviting Campbells grandson to play her piano, and many of the
guests got up to dance.
Youngblood recently enjoyed another kind of fame. In 1999, while playing
at the Broadway Hotel & Tavern in downtown Madison, a man approached
him about appearing in the movie Madison.
Movie director Bill Bindley said to him, I want you to be in my
movie; you would be perfect for the part, Youngblood recalled
of the encounter.
It resulted in Youngblood appearing in two movie scenes. Look closely
and youll see him playing in the band during the Belle of Louisville
scene, then again in the crowded gym scene when he stands up and shouts
his one-liner amid other townspeople assembled.
Youngblood and his wife, Mary, live on First Street in Madison and are
enjoying retirement. They recently remodeled their home and spend time
in their garden.
And of course, Youngblood still enjoys playing his music everything
from Big Band to present day.
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