Green Flamingos to Perform at Henderson Community Days: Friesen Family Shares a Love of Music
Orin Friesen, Henderson High School Class of 1964, turned his love of music into a 50 year career in broadcasting. In 1966, he started his first bluegrass band and has been performing music ever since. Twenty years ago, Friesen began playing cowboy music, which led to a second career as a cowboy singer at the Prairie Rose Chuckwagon Supper near Wichita, Kansas. That experience allowed him to perform his music around the country, including Nashville and Carnegie Hall. In 2006, Friesen and his band became the first cowboy band to tour China.
In 1982, Friesen married fellow radio DJ, Bekki Gardner, so it was only natural that their children would follow in their parents’ musical footsteps. Since 2009, son Jesse has been a member of his father’s band, the Prairie Rose Rangers. He also performs with several other bands. The youngest child, Annie, who will be a freshman at Concordia University in Seward, Nebraska, plays drums in the Green Flamigos.
When the three Friesens play together, they do a lot of old-time rock & roll, with a few old country and novelty songs thrown in. Orin Friesen says, “The Green Flamingos are really my kids’ band. I’m just glad they let their dad be a part of it. It’s so much fun to play those old songs.”
The Green Flamingos, sponsored Mainstay Communications, will perform at 7:00 p.m. on July 11 on the downtown stage during Henderson’s annual Community Days, right after the Chamber BBQ. So, how did the Green Flamingos get their name? “I haven’t a clue,” Orin states. “My kids came up with that. Hopefully it conveys the fact that we like to have fun with our music.”
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