Saturday, October 25, 2008

Wylie Smith's 60th Birthday

Many of you may know of the legend that is Wylie Smith, the man who was the heart and soul of For The Record in Amherst for 30 years back before the whole world went crazy. I bought my first Thin Lizzy album from him back in 1977 and his recommendations and guidance and familiarity with customer's tastes helped build many choice music collections in the Valley over the years. He also had a knack for hiring employees who carried the same passionate torch for music, many of whom are still involved in music in one way or another in the valley.
Above (l-r) Paul Coombs, Wylie Smith, Larry Pruner. From what I could gather, the guys were on a softball team that earned many a 2nd place trophy. At some crossroads of life, Wylie decided that they were mocking him from the shelf and got rid of them. Larry, of Valley Books of Amherst fame seems to have found one at a garage sale and brought it home to daddy. This is only what I reconstructed from the madness, so I may update this story later. Or not. I like this story.
Mr. Smith (aka Blind Willy McSnell) was in a fraternity at Amherst College (Pakka Bowla Weed? Droppa Lotta Blotta?) back when fraternal antics were more psychedelic and laid back than the notorious Animal House model that would emerge later in the decade. I sound like Dan Rather.
Happy Birthday buddy. Here's to the next 60.


Mary E.Carey said...

Nice, concise local history lesson. Did you take that last great photo using your old-fashioned camera? (You point your automatic digital camera through the lens, right? I still want to try this.)

Jerry Reilly said...

>>The little girl below was sitting on the mailbox when I came back by after flyering Main Street and her dad let me shoot this picture. I should have asked her name.

Her name is Jayla Reilly and she is delighted to see her pic on your blog. She lives in Boston and just happened to be passing through Northhampton trying outthe mailboxes on the afternoon you snapped the pic.

Jerry Reilly - her dad