Lonesome Onry and Mean: Poodie and the Hickoids

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We've received quite a few rememberances of Poodie Locke, Willie Nelson's stage manager who passed away Wednesday in Austin of a heart attack. But none of the rememberances quite have the zing of Saustex Media label honcho Jeff Smith's.

Smith, singer of the Hickoids and former owner of Austin's Hole in the Wall, remembers Locke kicking him out of what is now Emo's in Austin:

"Poodie owned what is now Emo's in Austin. It was called Raven's and then Poodie's Red River Saloon - this is sometime around '89-'90. I knew him through his girlfriend Mizz Jules, who was a neighbor and drinking buddy. One Sunday afternoon, I was hanging out at the bar with an LSD dealer friend of mine.

We had eaten 5 or 6 hits apiece and were tripping pretty hard and drinking shots all afternoon. The band Shoulders started playing out back early in the evening, and we didn't know it but they were taping something for French TV.


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"We knew most of the guys in the band, and there were only about 10 people there, so we start fucking with 'em, just screaming at them between songs, pulling out our dicks and doing "helicopter drills," just general bad behavior, trying to crack 'em up while they're playing.

"Their manager was Griff (who I didn't know at the time), the guy who ran and still runs the Cactus Cafe (shoosher folk venue). Griff gets pissed about us and asks Poodie to kick us out.

"So I'm standing there watching the band - I think my buddy had already peeled off - and I feel this big-ass bear paw on my shoulder. I turn around and look up from the middle of Poodie's chest and he says, 'Jeff, I'm sorry, I have to ask you to leave.'

"I didn't even know why he wanted me to leave at the time. I did know he could've snapped me in half if he had been making the peace sign and closed his fingers around me, so I said, 'Thanks Poodie! I'll see you next time.'

"I'm pretty sure that's the only time I ever thanked anybody for kicking me out of a bar. Dude understood walking softly with a big stick."



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