The Hicks with Sticks Facebook page has 200 subscribers and, thanks to positive feedback, has expanded and supplanted the email list that HWS once maintained. As for expanded coverage, the HWS FB page is being used to post short, often time-sensitive, information related to Bay Area twang including key shows, quick updates on bands and clubs, and short takes on news pertaining to the twang-friendly community. Meanwhile, this blog will continued to post reviews, insights, and news items requiring deeper coverage. All new posts to this site are also announced on the FB page, so liking HWS on FB means not missing anything.
Another advantage of the HWS FB page is that anybody can post to it so giving a show an extra plug, adding a show that might not be on the HWS calendar, announcing a car show, spotlighting a retro event, spreading a hot rumor, or exposing a scandal are all candidates for posting there.
HWS videos and pictures are also finding their way onto the FB page. The Shut-Ins with Gayle Lynn (Hired Hands) sitting in, and their “unique” interpretation of “Baby It’s Cold Outside” is on FB and nowhere else. “You Can Have My Husband (but Please Don’t Mess with My Man)” by the Cosmo Alley Cats and Quarterman Jack’s hillbilly cover of Depeche Mode’s “Your Own Personal Jesus” are among the video treats soon to come.
The FB page has also supplanted the email list which hasn’t been used for some time. The HWS email list accumulated over 500 subscribers over the last 12 years but this led to problems. First, if email didn’t bounce, there was no practical way to know who still wanted to be subscribed. Second, anti-spam measures meant the list had to be broken into several pieces to get the mailings out. Moving the addresses to a list server turned out to be impractical because names that are in a flat file address book can be automatically transferred to a list server, but names that are in a subgroup, as the HWS subscribers are, have to be cut-and-pasted one at a time. Even if this tedious task was undertaken, there would still be too many on the list who no longer want HWS news.
This post is the last that will be mailed to the email list. Those who have received this post by email and want to keep up with news from Hicks with Sticks need to “like” the FB page. HWS remains the best, if not the only, source for news and events related to Bay Area western swing, alt-country, honky-tonk and rockabilly; and leveraging it to social media has been a logical step, so “face us on Likebook” to get all the news and blurbs HWS will continue to offer.