Originally Published: October 23, 2013 8:40 a.m.
Cordes Lakes musician Mel Reynolds on Oct. 6 was inducted into the Western Swing Hall of Fame.
Reynolds' musical career started at age 14, when he was given a guitar for Christmas. While in California, he played with big dance and jazz bands before progressing to Western Swing.
Western Swing is a conversion of Country Western music with the incorporation of big band instruments such as saxophones and other horns. It combines both genres to create great dance music. Much of today's music doesn't keep the proper beat for dancing and the big dance bands have disappeared, Reynolds said. So Country Swing is now the best thing going for those who enjoy formal dancing.
A recent illness forced Reynolds to take a leave of absence from his band, during which he was honored with the Swing Hall of Fame award, a nice "get well" boost.
Reynolds has won several other awards for his music. In 2002, he also was inducted into the Arizona Country Swing Hall of Fame.
He said he hopes soon to be back on his feet and back playing with his band.