The Great Music Revolution of the 1960s would change the world forever. Cece was a “Blues-Singing Cabaret Dancer” from New Orleans; Billy Ray was a “Guitar-Playing Cowboy” from Texas. In a swirling saga of Sex, Drugs, and Honky Tonk Music, they vowed to make their mark. Even if it killed them.
DALLAS — The Honky Tonk Life or, “Put a Flashing Neon Light on My Tombstone” is by far award-winning author R.D. Foster’s best work to date; an instant classic, reminiscent of a time when music was king and all the world its subjects. A sort of coming of age story in reverse that combines all the best and all the worst of the elements of the old-school music world. Set concurrently in the 1990s, as well as in the turbulent 1960s, it features a unique twist on the never-ending quest for stardom and fame.
Mysterious and alluring things begin to happen to California surfer boy, turned country-and-western musician, Brady Schmalzie. On the brink of financial ruin, bankruptcy and foreclosure, and with no possible solutions in sight, Brady receives a letter from an attorney in Fort Worth. Brady, along with his golden goddess girlfriend, Honey B Goode, travels to Texas where they find that the truth is sometimes so much stranger than fiction. So begins Brady’s sojourn into another world and time where things may or may not be all that they seem.
Neat, witty and with more twists and turns than the U.S. interstate system can provide, you will ride along with a unique cast of characters that only Foster’s mind can imagine. Topped off with conspiracy, organized crime and a lot of beautiful women, sex and wild partying, “The Honky Tonk Life ... or Put a Flashing Neon Light on My Tombstone” will grab you hard and never let you go.
So hop onboard the 1957 GMC 4104 motor coach and join Brady, Billy and the rest, on a ride of a lifetime with R.D. Foster behind the wheel.
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About the author/musician: R.D. Foster born and raised in Collin County. He began learning how to write as a journalism student in high school. At 18, he joined the United States Marine Corps during the Vietnam War and served for three years, collecting stories to write about all the while. He has since written over 200 songs, numerous newspaper and magazines stories, and two books about Vietnam. Foster, with his wife Trina, lives in rural North Texas, is currently working on his third novel, and still performs his songs with a four-piece band, “The Red River Surfers”.
From the author:
“I played my first professional gig in 1965 at seventeen, using a borrowed guitar from Patty, a high-school cheerleader. My beat-up, five-dollar-garage-sale, a-little-bit-warped, Sears Silvertone hollow-body, arch-top guitar wasn’t anywhere near professional quality.
“Since then I have traveled over a million miles as a singer, songwriter, guitarist, harmonica player, bus driver, eighteen-wheeler jockey and a general jack-of-all trades in the music business. The songs included in the stories in this book came first and are the basis for where the stories take us. I began writing The Honky Tonk Life in late 1986, although I didn’t know it at the time. With a pencil and a spiral notebook I began jotting down stories that came from the songs that found their way into my mind, basically just passing time during the hundreds of hours I spent in hotel rooms or cruising down the road for days on end.
“The characters in this book are based on no one in particular, but are compilations of the dozens of people I have known, worked and traveled with for thirty-something years. The stories are fiction, but you can be certain there’s an element of truth on where they came from. Life on the road as a musician is different from any other profession that I know of. It can be glamorous and exciting, but it can also be tedious, boring, lonely and extremely hazardous to back-home family life.
“The popular advice for writers is to ‘write about what you know.’ I hope you enjoy 'The Honky Tonk Life or, Put a Flashing Neon Light on my Tombstone.' "