Pat Cupp, Long Gone Rockabilly Daddy

Pat Cupp promo 1956

Pat with Mac Bouvrie 1995


Pat Cupp was born into a musical family on January 21, 1938 in Nashville Arkansas USA. His Mother, Ruth, was a piano player. His Daddy was a drummer. Brothers, Skippy and Mickey, and, sister Bea, were musicians also. The Cupp Family was very well known though out Arkansas for their talent and music abilities. At the age of 13, Pat won a talent contest and was awarded a Radio Show on KVMA Radio in Magnolia Arkansas. His family was all part of the show, which was broadcast every Sunday afternoon. The music of the time was considered "Hit Parade" consisting of popular tunes by Bing Crosby, Vic DeMone, Kay Starr, Franky Lane, Frank Sinnatra and The Ink Spots. The Cupp family was not into Country Music, which was referred to as Hillbilly Music. The Musical Cupp's spent most of their time entertaining all over the State of Arkansas. At this tender age, Pat had dreams of being a big entertainer when he became an adult.

In the summer of 1954, Pat and family moved from Magnolia Arkansas to Texarkana Arkansas. Pat began his junior year in Arkansas High School. It was during this time that he met a friend, Cheesie Nelson, who introduced him to the world of Country Music. Cheesie had become an Elvis Presley fan and introduced Elvis's early music to Pat. Cheesie could mimic Elvis and wanted Pat to play the guitar for him. Pat and Cheesie became very popular in Texarkana and performed at the local High Schools. It was in the late fall that Pat and Cheesie met Elvis, Scotty and Bill. Elvis and band had some car trouble south of Texarkana and was late in getting to their stage show on time. The promoter of the show knew of Pat and Cheesie and sent someone to get them to come to the stage show and keep the audience happy until Elvis and band could get there. Pat and Cheesie made it to the show and performed Elvis's songs until Elvis got to the show. When Elvis came in, he was amused at what he saw and heard. Elvis then thanked Pat and Cheesie for helping out and took over the show. At intermission, Elvis call Pat and Cheesie back stage to his dressing room and spent the intermission time visiting. At this time in Elvis's career, he made many trips to Texarkana and did have contact with Pat and Cheesie again.

After meeting Elvis and seeing his performance, Pat decided to change his style of music and get involved in the new Country Rock sound that Elvis was doing. Pat started out without a band. He did several stage shows with Johnny Cash and Carl Perkins. At one of the stage shows, Pat started out on stage by himself, with just his guitar, and Carl thought it was a shame that Pat didn't have a band. Carl picked up his guitar and walked on stage with Pat along with Johnny Cash's bass man. Pat did his songs and Carl played lead guitar for him. This was quite a trill for Pat and he never forgot the kindness Carl Perkins showed by helping. A few weeks later, Pat formed his band and continued stage show performances with Johnny and Carl.

In April of 1956, Pat did a stage show with Tommy Sands, and after this show, was invited to be on the Louisiana Hayride in Shreveport Louisiana. It was at this stage show that Pat met Joe Behari of Modern Records who signed Pat to record on his RPM Record Label. Pat recorded his music in the month of May, 1956 at KWKH in Shreveport Louisiana. After recording "Long Gone Daddy", "Do Me No Wrong", "Baby Come Back", "I Guess It's Meant That Way" "I Won't Remember To Cry" and "That Gal Of Mine", Pat was asked what he would call his band. Pat laughed and said that he wanted to call them "The Flying Saucers". At first the guys in the band thought it was a joke, but then realized that Pat was serious. So, "The Flying Saucers" were born.

Pat Cupp 1956

Pat Cupp at Hembsy 1995

Pat Cupp and the Flying Saucers then began promoting their first record release called "Do Me No Wrong" and "Baby Come Back" on RPM Record Label. Bookings were going well and Pat was gaining recognition while doing stage show with Carl Perkins, Johnny Cash, Roy Orbison and a host of others. Then, suddenly things began to change for Pat. Modern Records called Pat to New Orleans to record with an R&B Band. They re-recorded "Long Gone Daddy" and put another type song on the flip side named "To Be The One". This record changed Pat's style from the Rockabilly Sound to the mainstream R&B Sound that was getting popular. This changed took Pat away from the style of music he wanted to do and the people he wanted to travel with. It was such a disappointment that Pat quit music and joined the U.S Air Force to get away from music and his recording contract as well as his manager's contract. Music, for Pat, became a hobby rather than a business.

Pat Married his High School sweetheart, Loretta Gaye Mitchell and began raising a family. Pat has one daughter, Renee, and two boys, Darin and Scott. Pat worked as a Technical Engineer and Project Engineer for a Government Contractor for 35 years before retiring. Pat continued music as a hobby but also had to retire due to a profound hearing loss. Before retiring, Pat was an honored guest at Hemsby England in 1995. It was at this stage show that Pat realized that his music days were over. His hearing loss made it impossible to do public appearances. Pat and family are still living in Texarkana Arkansas and are doing well. Pat has been inducted into the Internet Rockabilly Hall of Fame in the USA. Pat is always glad to hear from Rockabilly Fans and replies to his email as time will allow.

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Pat Cupp at the Rockabilly Hall of Fame:

Information provided by Pat Cupp, 2002
Used with permission