One Very Weird Commerical

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Decades of moonlightingMusic was always an avocation for Fran. (As the late Bill DeSouza used to joke: "How is a musician different from a pepperoni pizza? A pepperoni pizza can feed a family of four.")

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´╗┐Friends unite Ghost Band to play a final chorus for Fran

The band moves out to the patio, where 11 chairs, a drum set and an electronic keyboard await. The guests take their chairs in a semicircle on the grass, followed by Fran in his wheelchair.

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Converse - All Star Ox Womens - Optical White

Kathy Kem, second tenor sax: Randy's daughter in law, co founder of Willamette Valley Music Co. It's not a polished performance, Converse Dark Brown

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And when he returned to his hometown, he played them with the Bill DeSouza Band from its founding in 1949 to its final concert in 1980.

Each guest greets Fran with a hug and a reminiscence. Fran leans up from his hospital bed, grasping heads in what looks like a blessing.

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to put war behind them, flocked to the Crystal Gardens Ballroom on southeast Liberty Street for "two floors, two bands, for two bits." The band obliged, playing a mix of songs meant to keep dancers on the floor.

Swathed in blankets against the cool evening, 91 year old Francis Allen taps his foot on his wheelchair rest. A smile lights his wan face.

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He played those tunes while stationed with the army near Astoria during World War II. As he likes to joke, "I fought with a clarinet, rather than a bayonet."

one another's children grow up over potlucks produced by their wives.

Randy Kem, first alto sax and clarinet: Subbed in the DeSouza Band as a student, inherited the band's library, learned instrument repair from Fran Allen and followed him for years as Kemtone Repair Co.; co founder of Willamette Valley Music Co.

What he loved best was the camaraderie among the band members. They played music, they played tricks, and they watched Converse All Star Alternative

Fran, playing tenor sax and clarinet, knew the tunes by heart in those days. From his front row spot in the band, he could let his mind wander to admire the best jitterbugging on the dance floor.

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The DeSouza Band was the danceband in Salem during those years. Young couples, eager Converse Sale Melbourne

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That will happen, everyone knows, in a matter of days or weeks. Tonight's gig is to let Francis hear it while he still can.

DeSouza Band memories"Pennsylvania 6 5000"; "In the Mood"; "American Patrol." They're old standards that Francis Fran to his friends has played practically ever since he picked up a clarinet during the mid 1930s at Salem High School.

John Dulaney, trumpet: Played with the DeSouza Band in later years; played with Fran Allen in the Salem Concert Band; former owner of Wills Music Store

but the guest of honor doesn't mind.

Randy tells the band to "play by the ink" exactly as written. He counts off the rhythm for "Moten Swing": "1 2 1,2,3,4!"

Former comrades from the Bill DeSouza Band, plus musical friends from the three decades since the band dissolved, have put Converse - All Star Ox Womens - Optical White together an 11 member combo. The "Bill DeSouza Ghost Band," as they call it, is practicing the tunes they'll play at Francis' memorial service.

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The Ghost Band convenesNow the Bill DeSouza Ghost Band is reconstituting in Fran's honor. Two of his old bandmates join the crowd around Fran's hospital bed: longtime DeSouza trumpeter Bob Schunke and John Dulaney, who played trumpet during the band's later years. Bass player Joe Rierson will sit out this gig on the sidelines.

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Converse - All Star Ox Womens - Optical White

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