Gene Watson’s Peers within the country music industry believe in the sheer talent of this unassuming man from east Texas, so much so that Gene is regarded by many of them as ‘the singer’s singer’ – and rightly so!
All of Gene Watson’s Peers, who were contacted by The Gene Watson Fan Site, during 2006, were most gracious with their time and words.
It is here, within this special part of The Gene Watson Fan Site, that you have an opportunity to read a quote from Chris ‘Tiny’ Olson, which he submitted to this site on Friday 9 June 2006.
Sean Brady would like to take this opportunity to say ‘thank you’ to Chris ‘Tiny’ Olson who has made a special contribution to a unique part of this online ‘celebration of a Lone Star Hero’.
Chris ‘Tiny’ Olson
This quote was submitted on Friday 9 June 2006.
‘I’d be honoured to say a few words about Gene.
There were only two 45 records that I ever purchased because I liked them so much.
The first was ‘Word Games’ (No.10, 1975) by the late Billy Walker (Monday 14 January 1929 – Sunday 21 May 2006) and the other was ‘Love In The Hot Afternoon‘ (No.3, 1975). I heard that song and just thought ‘Man, that cat sings great’.
Well, I wound up playing behind both Billy and Gene, but actually worked for Gene for nearly ten years beginning in 1977.
I give Gene a lot of credit for using us, the members of his band, on his recordings.
We played on the entire albums for several years and this included the hit releases, not just the album cuts.
The only other guy who was doing this at that time (early 1980s) was Ricky Skaggs. It took some courage for him to make this move considering the power possessed by the record company executives.
I still hear many of those old hits I played on of Gene’s often. Each time I do, I am thankful to Gene for giving me such an opportunity; very few musicians get such a chance.
Thanks again Gene!’
Thank you, Chris ‘Tiny’ Olson, for your support of Gene Watson.
Chris ‘Tiny’ Olson first went on the road as a steel guitar player in 1974 and worked for a number of artists, including Billy Walker (Monday 14 January 1929 – Sunday 21 May 2006).
Chris ‘Tiny’ Olson was a member of Gene Watson’s Farewell Party Band between 1977 and 1987.
Chris ‘Tiny’ Olson went on to play on five of Gene Watson’s albums, along with appearing on fifteen of Gene Watson’s Billboard Top 10 country music singles.
Chris ‘Tiny’ Olson displayed his exemplary talents on steel guitar on a number of Gene Watson albums, including ‘Sometimes I Get Lucky‘ (MCA Records, 1983), ‘Heartaches, Love & Stuff‘ (MCA Records, 1984), ‘Little by Little‘ (MCA Records, 1984), ‘Memories to Burn‘ (Epic Records, 1985) and ‘Starting New Memories‘ (Epic Records, 1986).
Initially, Chris ‘Tiny’ Olson played Emmons push-pulls and a Session 400 on Gene Watson’s recordings.
Then, Chris ‘Tiny’ Olson played a new ZumSteel Nashville 400 on ‘Got No Reason Now For Going Home’, which was written by Johnny Russell (Tuesday 23 January 1940 – Tuesday 3 July 2001) in 1984.
In the early 1980s, Gene Watson was unique in that he insisted on using members of his own band, The Farewell Party Band, for his recording sessions; the only other artists using their own bands in the studio at this time were Ricky Skaggs and Waylon Jennings (Tuesday 15 June 1937 – Wednesday 13 February 2002).
When he got off the road in the late 1980s, Chris ‘Tiny’ Olson worked his way up to the position of Transportation Director at a large school district, which often meant a seventy-hour work-week and the stress that went with it.
So, in 2001, Chris ‘Tiny’ Olson decided to go back to what he enjoyed most – bass fishing and the pedal steel guitar.
Chris ‘Tiny’ Olson did not have an online presence as such. It was following a little online research that Sean Brady at The Gene Watson Fan Site discovered The Steel Guitar Forum, which included several postings about, and from, Chris ‘Tiny’ Olson.
As a result of The Steel Guitar Forum, Sean Brady obtained Chris ‘Tiny’ Olson’s contact details.