Musician’s video a tribute to late wife

Earl Tucker, 72, has been around music for a long time – ever since his mother taught him to play the guitar at the age of 10 in Clarksburg.

In what may become his most important musical project, Tucker, who lives near Little Hocking, is putting together a music video tribute to his wife, Sandi, who died of ovarian cancer last May. The video will show how cancer affects a family and the need to detect cancer early, Tucker said.

Tucker said if his video helps just one person it will be worth the effort.

Sandi, who sang in groups while Tucker played the guitar, found out she had cancer about 2.5 years before her death on May 9, 2012, at the age of 61.

Earl and Sandi were preparing to play at a New Year’s Eve gig in Clarksburg when they got the devastating news about Sandi’s cancer. “It scared us both, but we played that night,” Earl said.

“She suffered,” Earl said of his wife’s battle with cancer. “That lady was tough. She was a strong, strong person.”

Tucker has a recording studio in his Washington County home, where he is putting together the tribute to his late wife.

“I’ve written a lot of the music on the video,” Tucker said. It will contain footage of the Tuckers with their daughters, who are helping with the project.

“The video shows what cancer does to a family. But it is not gruesome,” Tucker said.

The project emphasizes the need to get regular medical check-ups and to question doctors about unexplained pains to catch cancer early, Tucker said.

The video will feature some of Tucker’s original music – a blend of country, blues and jazz music.

“It will be cutting edge, out-of-the-box stuff,” Tucker said of the tunes.

Tucker wrote songs about Sandi, who loved family and friends, he said.

Earl and Sandi Tucker were together for 40 years. They met in Sandi’s homestate of California when Earl was playing music in a club. The couple relocated to this area in 1977.

Tucker said he has not set a deadline for finishing his project. He wants to take his time to do it right.

Tucker is scheduled to play his guitar from 8:30-11 p.m. May 11 at Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 8127 in Vienna.

He holds an open music and singing jam on the first Saturday of the month from 1-5 p.m. at Peddler’s Junction in Belpre’s Washington Square shopping center.

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One of Parkersburg’s most anticipated events, the Taste of Parkersburg, needs volunteers. The lack of volunteers for this year’s wine/beer/food/music extravaganza probably can be attributed to the event’s new date – June 1. For the past seven years, the TOP has been held in mid-September next to the Blennerhassett Hotel at Market and Third streets. Dave Argabrite, Betty Dotson and Susan Schuchts are working on a committee to try to corral volunteers for the Taste of Parkersburg. Volunteers get free admission, a volunteer T-shirt and a wine or beer glass, the committee told me. Volunteers should fill out the registration using the following link: www.surveymonkey.com/s/TOP2013Volunteer. Or go to the Downtown PKB website and click on volunteer. Tickets for the Taste of Parkersburg go on sale Monday at locations listed on Downtown PKB. For the first time, reserved seating will allow express check-in and a table for four or eight people. Reserved table tickets are available at the Blennerhassett Hotel.

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Mango Latin Bistro at 701 Market St. has created a popular event in downtown Parkersburg featuring art, music, Latin food and wine. Mango’s second “creative experience” drew another packed house last Saturday night following a successful inaugural event in November. Owners Ross and Tere Clegg intend to keep the good times rolling with another social event for downtown sometime this summer. Artwork by Michelle Waters, rustic, introspective photo art; Nicole Harris, energetic vibrant paintings, and Geoff Schenkel, repurposed and powerful paintings and sculpture, is being displayed at Mango. Schenkel helped to paint the mural at the Oil and Gas Museum in Parkersburg.

Contact Paul LaPann at plapann@newsandsentinel.com