522 SOS Fireballs return

USAF: Airman Ericka Engblom U.S. Air Force Lt. Col. Paul Pendleton, 522nd Special Operations Squadron commander, prepares to accept the guidon from acting commander of the 27 Special Operations Group, Col. Charles Myers. The 522nd Special Operations Squadron, the Fireballs, were welcomed back to the U.S. Air Force at Cannon in a reactivation ceremony April […]

‘Clovis Sound’ traveling to Carlsbad

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File photo Tommy Allsup will perform in a Jan. 8 concert in Carlsbad to bring the “Clovis Sound” to the area. CNJ staff The Clovis sound is going to Carlsbad. The Carlsbad Museum and Arts Center is hosting a look back at the Norman Petty recording studios in Clovis, and the era of music made […]

Fireballs’ rise to fame helped put Clovis on map

By Don McAlavy: County historian Editor’s note: This is second of a two-part series on the history of the Fireballs rock n’ roll group, a frequent guest of the annual Clovis Music Festival. Tomsco reunited the group and set up a recording session at the Petty studio. “We were really excited, we had no idea […]

The Fireballs got start in high school talent show

By Don McAlavy: County historian Editor’s note: This is the first of a two-part series on The Fireballs, one of the top rock ‘n’ roll acts of the early 1960s with strong roots in Clovis. It’s been 37 years since five young men from Raton made their first record at Norman Petty Studios in Clovis. […]

Fireballs celebrate history during final dining out

By Airman Elliott Sprehe: 27th Special Operations Wing Public Affairs By Airman Elliott Sprehe 27th Special Operations Wing Public Affairs CANNON AIR FORCE BASE — The era of the 27th Fighter Wing, Cannon’s former host unit, got one step closer to its end Saturday night at the Landing during the 522nd Fighter Squadron’s dining out. […]

Fighter squadron prepares for inactivation

By Airman Elliott Sprehe: 27th Fighter Wing Public Affairs CANNON AIR FORCE BASE —History was made for the former 27th Fighter Wing as the 522nd Fighter Squadron, or Fireballs, and their Aircraft Maintenance Unit returned from their deployment to Andersen Air Force Baese, Guam. The four-month deployment was the last for the Fireballs as they […]

Deployment, squadron reach final days

By Tech. Sgt. Steven Wilson: 36th Operations Group Public Affairs Andersen Air Force Base, Guam —The 522 Expeditionary Fighter Squadron deployed from Cannon Air Force Base has wrapped up the final deployment for their squadron here and, ultimately, the 27th Fighter Wing. The 522 Fighter Squadron, known as the Fireballs, are being inactivated upon their […]

Reporter’s Notebook: Musicians get nod for induction

Small, black vinyl records cover the walls of the Norman Petty Studios, a testament to the musicians who recorded at the Seventh Street studio under the tutelage of Petty. The Clovis music producer and several of the musicians he worked with in the 1950s will be inducted into the New Mexico Music Hall of Fame. […]

Tharp, Charly “Chuck”

Charly “Chuck” Lee Tharp, 65, of Clovis died Friday, March 17, 2006, at Plains Regional Medical Center. He was born Feb. 3, 1941, in Ysleta, Texas, to James W. and Willie Blanch Tharp. He was a founding member and the original vocalist of the Fireballs, an internationally known band. He penned numerous rock ‘n’ roll […]

Vocalist, founding member of Fireballs dies at 65

By Marlena Hartz: CNJ staff writer Rail thin, with a black cowboy hat perpetually atop his head, Chuck Tharp entertained for generations. He died Friday at the age of 65 from heart failure, following a battle with cancer. He was a founding member and the original vocalist of the Fireballs, an internationally known band. He […]