Jan's World


Billy Mandolin enters from the right as the curtains close behind him and immediately launches into his brilliant solo of the William Tell Overture. A third of the way through the overture, Billy Mandolin pauses for a break, grins shyly and motions for applause. Following the applause, he again launches into the next movement of the overture when suddenly the curtain opens to reveal the other three hillbillies waiting patiently for the song to be finished. While Billy Bass is playing the bass and Billy Elvis, the guitar, Billy Fiddle stands alone looking bored. As the music continues, Billy Fiddle begins to shrug his shoulders to the music and then breaks into a mamba. He produces a duck call and Billy Mandolin finishes the overture.

Billy Elvis:
 Ladies and gentlemen, Billy Hill. (the audience applauds. Billy Mandolin takes a bow.) Now we'd like to bring out my big brother, Billy. He's going to play a famous bluegrass song about a train  that carried oranges from Florida to New York. My brother, Billy plays this song fast. He's known as the fastest speed fiddler in the whole of..... Frontierland..... excluding the mariachis. We haven't raced them yet. (he meant the Mariachi Divas, an all female band in Frontierland).

Billy Fiddle plays the introduction to Orange Blossom Special and makes a sound of a train building up steam. Part way through the intro, he pauses and says "Wooo, Wooo" like a train whistle.

Billy Elvis: That was some mighty fancy fiddling. (Billy Fiddle taps him on the shoulder and indicates that he would like to speak privately to him). Just a minute, my brother wants to speak to me. What?

Both Billies talk quietly to each other, while Billy Bass and Billy Mandolin come forward and try to listen in, while playing the Times Up theme from Jeopardy. Before Billy Fiddle has finished talking , the music ends with the final two notes from the Jeopardy theme.

Billy Elvis: 
Times up! Billy just said that he feels a love bound with this entire audience and he feels that on the wings of your love he can break his speed fiddlin' record that hasn't been broken in three years. (Billy Fiddle holds up two fingers). This will be officially clocked on our official..... CLOCK? Billy is now assuming the speed fiddling crouch. (Billy gets into a crouched positive facing to stage left). We now await his okay before we actually commence.

Billy Fiddle: Okay!

Billy Elvis: 
Clocking... one... two... three... GO! Oh, nice start... building speed... and now accelerating.

All four Billys turn sideways toward the booth on the right hand side of the stage, as Billy Fiddle speeds up. When he has reached what he feels is full speed, the band turns to the opposite side of the stage, as if a train has just sped by. They turn back to Billy Elvis and await the verdict.

Billy Elvis: 
35 miles per hour. What a disappointing time for Billy. Let's give him a hand for trying. (Billy resumes the Orange Blossom Special).

Billy Fiddle:
 Thank you, folks We have some good news and some bad news. The bad news of course is that I wasn't able to braek my speed fiddling record. Not too worry though. The good news is the old record still stands! (He waits for audience applause, nothing happens). Thank you for that wonderful applause. For those of you who didn't join in, we know you're disappointed. We'll make it up to you now by adding another fiddle. Please welcome my brother, Billy.

Billy Mandolin comes out playing a fiddle and breaks into the Theme from Zorba the Greek. Billy Fiddle starts the crowd clapping in time to the song, as Billy Elvis produces a bandana from his back pocket and holds it out as if challenging Billy Fiddle to a greek style dance. They dance in a circle each holding an end of the bandana while the other two play and as the music gets faster they let go and run off stage. Billy Mandolin continues to play and than calls Billy Fiddle back on stage to finish the Orange Blossom Special duet with him.

Billy Fiddle:
 Let Billy know you love him (applauses) ...and now... fiddle number three. (Billy Elvis enters with a fiddle and receives wolf whistles from the crowd).

Billy Elvis: 
Thank you. That makes me feel so attractive.... but cheap! I'll never forget this one cold morning, late in the afternoon, when my brothers told me I wasn't a very good fiddler. They said I played like a classic violinist. They bought me this set of teeth to help compensate. I believe this is what you call a pros-teeth-sis. I would like to show you how I played before they bought me these teeth.

Billy Elvis plays Concerto for Two Violins and the crowd applauds. Billy Elvis: 
Alrighty! That may have sounded nice, but it don't put possum on the table. (He smiles showing his new "hillbilly" teeth) This is going to sound a little different.

Billy Elvis plays a country riff, as he flirts with the audience wearing his hillbilly teeth. All three fiddles (Billy Elvis, Billy Mandolin and Billy Fiddle) play Hoilday for Strings, as Billy Elvis walks about the stage like a fashion model in a Spring fashion show. As he comes to the center of the stage, all three fiddlers play the Theme from Indiana Jones and slide right back into the Orange Blossom Special. Billy Elvis stops to itch his nose part way through and produces a scratching sound on the fiddle. As they hit the final notes, Billy Elvis leaps up and lands as the last note plays. 

He takes out his Hillbilly teeth and tries to hand them to someone in the audience. Billy Elvis: 
Do you want these back? Thank you so much, we're going the extra fiddle here. What's better than three fiddles? The other Hillbillies yell: FOUR! Billy Elvis: That's right and here's Billy on fiddle number four.

Billy Bass comes out on the fourth fiddle to the sound of the Olympic Theme.

Billy Elvis: 
We are so proud of this. Over there... on that shelf, sits our CD and over at the Bonanza Outfitters, they have agreed to sell our CD. So as soon as the show is over, we're going to run it right over there. If someone buys it.... show 'em Billy... ( Billy Bass shows that a second CD is hiding behind the first CD on the shelf)... we have a back-up. We think the back-up actually sounds better because we were more rehearsed. The last song of the show is so important. It has to be as entertaining to watch as it is to look at. We've decided to add choreography, after we saw River Dance. Of course, we have a smaller stage and less people, so we've scaled our version down. We call it Puddle Prance.

As the other Billies stand back to back facing outward in the center of the stage, Billy Fiddle begins to play a fiddler's hornpipe. Billy Elvis strikes his best Lord of the Dance pose and joins the others in the center. As they begin to move counter clock-wise in a circle, Billy Bass moves his bow in front of Billy Elvis' face says
"Oh, Billy, Billl-lll-yyy". Billy Elvis watches the bow closely, gives Billy Bass a weird look and proceeds around the circle, where he ends up back where he started.

Billy Elvis: 
I'm back. I just went around in a little circle.

The Billys proceed to dance in a circle as Billy Elvis spins across the stage. They all come together in the center and bow to each other. Billy Fiddle steps on Billy Elvis' foot, but blames Billy Mandolin. He is yelled at as Billy Elvis leaps into the center of the stage, as the others play The Nutcracker Theme and than begins his Michael Flatly impression from Lord of the Dance. He ends his dance with a flourish and then links up arms with Billy Bass. Billy Fiddle sees what they are doing and also joins the link. He is then joined by Billy Mandolin  and they proceed to the side of the stage and the right hand steps. While going down the stairs, Billy Elvis accidently gets his bow caught up his nose. They stop and Billy Bass turns to see the accident.

Billy Elvis: 
Oh, no. It's happened again. We need to work on this section of the show. This happens EVERY show. I feel badly for the children. This isn't what Walt would have wanted. you wouldn't see this on a brochure. COME TO DISNEYLAND! (All the Billys strike a pose as if posing for a brochure, including Billy Elvis, who still had a bow inserted into his right nostril.) This isn't good. (As Billy pulls the bow from his nostril, a pinging sound can be heard throughout the saloon.) It's alright everybody. I'm OKAY!!!

The Hillbillies finish walking across the floor arm in arm in front of the audience, talking to guests as they pass. They continue up the left side stairs and onto the stage where they finish playing. As they step forward, they play the final riff, where each Billy is spotlighted and end by singing B-I-LL-LL-Y in harmony.

As the curtains close, Billy Elvis yells; 
IM OKAY!!!



This script is based on a typical Billy Hill and the Hillbillies Show. Not all songs, jokes or material have been included. 
This is merely presented to be an example of a typical show. The actual show was suggest to change.​​​​


NO

PHOTO

AVAILABLE

AT

THIS

TIME



​Bobby Davis
1994 – 2005
Sound/Lighting Technician.​

​Matt Laroux 

"Billy Matt"

2006 - 2014
Sub - plays the guitar and does lead. Also played with Laughing Stock Company in Frontierland.​

​Gary Cherno
1994 – 2014
Sound/Lighting Technician​

​Keith Rosier

"Billy Keith" 

2006 - 2014

Sub - plays the bass. Also, played with The Miner 49ers in Disney's California Adventure.​

​Gary Francisco 

"Billy Farley" 

1994 - 2014


plays fiddle, also performs as Farley the Fiddler​ at Disneyland



Rick Dunham 

"Billy Utility" 

2001 – 2014

plays banjo, guitar, bass. Also, starred in The Barncats at Disney's California Adventure.​



​Kevin Gregg 

"Billy Red" 

2001 – 2005

Sub for front man; plays guitar, some fiddle. Also performs with The Laughing Stock Company in Frontierland.​​​

​Jonny Ray Bartel 

"Billy Jonny Ray" 

2003 - 2004

Plays the bass.

Also, played with The Barncats at Disney's California Adventure.​

​Denny Hardwick 

"Billy Denny" 

1994 - 2004

Sub for front man – plays guitar and violin​





​Dave Eastly 

"Billy Banjo" 

1995 – 2014
plays bass, guitar, banjo. Also stars in The Barncats at Disney's California Adventure, The River Rascals in New Orleans Square, and Swingtown at the Carnation Garden stage on Main Street.​

​Cory Rouse 

"Billy Barney" 

2003 - 2011


Sub for front man, plays guitar. Also starred in Laughing Stock Company in Frontierland.​


​​

Barry Cogert 

"Billy Dimples"  

1995 - 2014


Played bass, played with Evan in Bridges of Orange County​





Arshag Chookorian 

"Doo-hickey Billy"

1994 - 2003

Played guitar, washboard.

He was one of the original subs.


​​

​​Billy Hill and the Hillbillies Substitutes:
Below is a list of people who have appeared as substitutes in the Billy Hill and the Hillbillies Show between 1994 and 2014.
























































​Sound Technicians & Stage Managers:
















Kirk Wall                                            Dennis Fetchet  

John Marshall                                                   Evan Marshall  

The Billy Hill Original Team Members:

"Billy Elvis" ~ The original Billy Hill lead, Kirk Wall has been with the show from the show's humble beginning in 1988. Kirk played with the Gold and Blue Teams. 
He worked in the show from December 22, 1994 to January 6, 2014 as a lead. Billy Elvis, plays guitar, fiddle, vocals. An original member. Also performs with Swingtown and as Tony Fabulous in The Big Shots. Currently plays with and heads Krazy Kirk and the Hillbillies at Knott's Berry Farm.



"Billy Fiddle" ~ The original Billy Fiddle, Dennis Fetchet has been with the show since it's inception in 1988. Dennis played with the Gold and Blue Teams. He worked in the show from December 22, 1994 to January 6, 2014. Billy Fiddle, plays fiddle, mandolin, guitar, violin, harmonica, vocals. Also plays with The Grateful Dudes Bluegrass Band. Currently plays with Krazy Kirk and the Hillbillies at Knott's Berry Farm.



"Billy Bass"~ The original bass player and manager of the group, John Marshall founded Billy and the Hillbillies in 1988. John played with the Gold and Green teams. John Marshall worked in the show from December 22, 1994 to January 3, 2014. He plays bass and fiddle and was an original member. Played with the Gold and Green Billy Teams. He currently plays with the Miskey Mountain Boys and as Billy and the Hillbillies at different venues.



"Billy Mandolin" ~ Mandolin virtuoso, Evan Marshall has been with Billy Hill and the Hillbillies, since they were placed in the Golden Horseshoe in December,1994. Evan Marshall performed from December 22, 1994 to November, 2003. Billy Mandolin plays mandolin, fiddle and sings vocals. He has played with The Bridges of Orange County and Smokewood. Left the Green Billy Team in November of 2003 to pursue a solo career. 



Billy Hill Team Members (added when the show went to 7 days a week):



"Billy Little John" ~ A long time Billy sub and member of the Laughing Stock Company,

John Eaden was the lead in the Green Team show from Thursday, October 23, 2003 to January 6, 2014. John Eaden sometimes called Billy Little John or sometimes, Billy Elvis II, plays guitar, washboard and vocals. He currently works with Disneyland's Laughing Stock Comedy Troupe.



"Billy Bow" ~ A Billy Lead, Miner 49er sub and River Rascal sub,
Anders Swanson is a lead in the Blue Team show from September 11, 2003 to January 6, 2014. Anders Swanson as Billy Bass plays bass, mandolin, fiddle and vocals. He also subbed with the River Rascals, the Royal Street Bachelors and The Bootstrappers. He currently plays in Krazy Kirk and the Hillbillies and with Five and Dime at Disney's California Adventure.​



"Billy John" ~ A Barncat/Miner 49ers sub, John David was a member in the Green Team Show from October 23, 2003. John David until 2014. Sometimes known as Billy Banjo, he plays banjo, guitar and vocals. He also subbed with DCA's The Barncats. Currently he occasionally subs with The Ghost Town Miners (previously the Miner 49ers).​



"Billy Banjo" ~ A Billy blue team member and Miner 49er sub, Rick Storey was a

lead in the Blue Team Show from September 11, 2003 to January 6, 2014. Rick Storey, also known as Billy Banjo plays banjo, guitar and vocals. He currently plays with Krazy Kirk and the Hillbillies and subs for the the Singing cowboy at Big Thunder BBQ. 



"Billy Bald" ~ A Billy sub, Duane Michaels was in the Gold and Green Team Shows from November 22, 2003 until January of 2014. Duane Michaels , as known as Billy Mandolin or sometimes called Billy Bald. He plays the mandolin and fiddle. He also subbed with The Barncats/Miner 49ers. He also played with the Miskey Mountain Boys until 2015. He currently plays as a sub for the Bootstrappers..



​​



Attention Former Cast Members and Performers of the Billy Hill and the Hillbillies Show

or castmembers from any show that ran at the Golden Horseshoe Saloon from 1955 until present.


If you were a former Golden Horseshoe Saloon performer or technician between the years 1955 to the present,

and would like to be included in this [still incomplete] list of Golden Horseshoe Cast Members,

OR

if you have additional information or corrections to make to this history,

I would love to hear from you.
Please contact Jan Vincent @
janvincent_1313@yahoo.com

Thanks go to Evan Marshall, Gary Cherno, and Dennis Fetchet for information used on this page.
Also, thanks to Dennis Fetchet for early pictures provided to this page.


 

Billy Hill and the Hillbillies CDs


Billy and the Hillbillies (the 1st CD)

This CD includes: 1812 Overture/ Battle of New Orleans, Pop's Hoedown [Devil's Dream], Rockabilly Medley, Hamilton County, Mama Don't Allow, Stoney Creek, Blackberry Blossom, Tallahassee, Cotton Patch, Saturday Night, Ragtime Annie, Shuckin' the Corn, and Tumwater Breakdown.

This CD featured Kirk Wall, Dennis Fetchet, John Marshall and Evan Marshall.
This CD is NO LONGER available.


Billy and the Hillbillies Billy Roll & Billy Rage (the 2nd CD)

This CD includes: "Billy Roll/Roll Over Beethoven",and "Billy Rage/Rage for a Penny". This CD featured only the Marshall Brothers.
This CD is NO Longer available.

"I Want U 2 Want Me" (The Billys 1st CD)
This CD includes: Ticket 2 Ride, No Matter What, Country Boy Medley, The Letter, Bluegrass Medley, Barefoot Nellie, Downtown, Mountain Girls,  I Want U 2 Want Me, Slewfoot The Bear, Chicken With My Head Cut Off, Whistlin' Tell, Mystery Train Medley, Stayin' Alive, Devil Went Down To Georgia and Lonesome Moonlight Waltz. This CD featured the blue team only with Kirk Wall, Dennis Fetchet, Rick Storey and Anders Swanson.
This CD is NO Longer available.


The Billys Live (the Billys 2nd CD)

This CD includes: Foggy Mountain Breakdown, Country Boy, Barefoot Nellie, The Letter, How Mountain Girls Can Love, Downtown, Flowers on the Wall, No Matter What, Rocky Top, Ticket to Ride, Orange Blossom Special and The Devil Went Down to Georgia. This CD features the blue team only with Kirk Wall, Dennis Fetchet, Rick Storey and Anders Swanson.

​This CD is available through www.KirkWallandtheHillbillies.com

Original Billy Hill Team                               Billy Hill Green Team


Billy Hill Gold Team                                   Billy Hill Blue Team

The 2003 Great Divide...


In October of 2003, the Billy Hill Show officially went from a five day a week show to a seven day a week show. In order to keep track of the new show combinations, they are now known by color teams;

THE
GOLD TEAM, THE GREEN TEAM and THE BLUE TEAM:

  • THE BLUE TEAM consists of Rick Storey, Kirk Wall, Anders Swanson and Dennis Fetchet. This team performed on Sundays and Mondays.

  • THE GOLD TEAM consists of Duane Michaels, Kirk Wall, Dennis Fetchet and John Marshall. This team currently performs on Saturdays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays.​

  • THE GREEN TEAM consists of John David, John Marshall, Duane Michael and John Eaden. This team currently performs on Thursdays and Fridays.

In November of 2003, Evan Marshall left the Billy Hill and the Hillbillies Show after over 11 years playing with the Hillbillies to pursue his solo mandolin career. He has replaced by Gold Team member, Duane Michaels.


In November of 2013, Disneyland made the decision to retire the Billy Hill and the Hillbillies Show and on Monday, January 6, 2014, they performed their last show with a crowd of over 1,000 people in the Jamboree Arena in Frontierland.


Typical Billy Hill and the Hillbillies Golden Horseshoe Script ~ Circa 2000 to 2005

(speaking parts appear in blue; singing parts appear in red)


Announcement (voice over):

Ladies and Gentlemen, put your hands together for Billy Hill and the Hillbillies.


As the curtain opens, the four hillbillies enter to the tune "Under the Double Eagle".

From left to right, they are Billy Bass (John Marshall), Billy Mandolin (Evan Marshall),

Billy Elvis (Kirk Wall) and Billy Fiddle (Dennis Fetchet). Gradually the song transforms

into "It's A Small World After All" as Billy Mandolin and Billy Fiddle step forward and

pretend to be animated robots from the attraction. Next, Billy Bass steps forward and

does a slap style bass version of It's a Small World. Finally, Billy Elvis steps up to the mic

and plays the final guitar lick to end the song.


Billy Elvis: Thank you and welcome to the Golden Horseshoe. We played Small World because... (Billy Mandolin shows child-like glee in the background)... well frankly, we just wanted to get it over with. (In the background, Billy Mandolin looks sad). We're Billy Hill and the Hillbillies. We'd like to thank the California Prison Work Release Program. It's great to be entertaining again. It's just great to be out. Now we'd like to play our Mountain Music Medley. Come on, boys! (music starts)


Billy Elvis sings: Mama, don't allow no mandolin playing here, Mama, don't allow no mandolin playing here, we don't care what Mama don't allow, play that mandolin anyhow, Mama, don't allow no mandolin playing here.... Go Mando!


Billy Mandolin plays a brief mandolin solo that leads into the Macarena. Billy Elvis immediately starts doing the Macarena dance finishing with everyone shouting, Hey, Macarena.(crowd cheers)


Billy Elvis: That's Billy on the mandolin and me on the Macarena. Oh yeah, Billy!


Billy Elvis sings:Mama, don't allow no blues harp playing here, Mama, don't allow no blues harp playing here, we don't care what Mama don't allow, play that blues harp anyhow, Mama, don't allow no blues harp playing here.


Billy Fiddle holds a single note on the harmonica for a minute and then breaks into a heavy blues riff.


Billy Elvis:My brother, Billy Hill on Blue's Harp.


Billy Elvis sings: Mama, don't allow no bass slapping here, Mama, don't allow no bass slapping here, we don't care what Mama don't allow, play that bass anyhow, Mama, don't allow no bass slapping here.... Slap it, Billy!


Bill Bass does a bass solo. He lays the bass on the floor, but continues to play it, as if in a wrestling match. at the end of the solo, Billy Elvis holds up Billy Bass's hand over his head and shouts... THE WINNER.... BILLY!


Billy Elvis:Through music we can travel great distances, and we'd love to have y'all join us, as we take you on a trip to our homeland. We'd like to take you to the land that we were born  and raised in... we're taking about... the mountains... (bass solo) ..... of Santa Monica.


Billy Elvis sings: Mama, don't allow no surf music here,

Mama, don't allow no surf music here,

we don't care what Mama don't allow,

play that surf music anyhow,

Mama, don't allow no surf music here.... Surf's Up!!


Billy Mandolin comes out from the left of the stage playing a washboard and doing The Venture's Wipe Out. Billy Fiddle comes out from the right of the stage dressed in a Hawaiian shirt and ball cap and playing an electric guitar and plays Wipe Out. Billy Bass also does a slap bass solo of Wipe Out.


Billy Mandolin: (turning to the audience) Hey, it's time for an electric gee-tar solo. Does anyone want to hear an electric gee-tar solo from Billy?


Billy Fiddle: (looking surprised) That WAS my solo!


Billy Mandolin: Let's give Billy some encouragment. (crowd cheers)


Billy Fiddle: Oh, Okay!  Billy Fiddle plays electric guitar surf medley and ends with The Star Spangled Banner while the other Billys stand at attention. Billy Elvis steps forward as the other hillbillies leave the stage.


Billy Elvis: We use the electric guitar to get that hard driving rock groove that we are so known for. We rock like madmen. Before we were men, we were rocking like mad men. We can't help it. It's in our DNA. Rock and Roll... I hate to get analytical, but it's so impressive how rock and roll has affected... (pause)..... y'all!


Billy Elvis: .....There she was just a walkin' down the street, singing.....


Crowd: .................do wa ditty, diddy dum, diddy, do.


Billy Elvis: ....Woah....It's one for the money, two for the show....


Crowd: ................three to get ready now, go cat go.


Billy Elvis: ....Na na, na,na, na, na....


Crowd: ................Hey, hey, hey good-bye.


Billy Elvis: ... She wore an itsy, bitsy, teeny, weeny.....


Crowd: ...............Yellow polka dot bikini.


Billy Elvis: ...Oooo, eeee, oooo, ah , ah.....


Crowd: ...............Ting, tang, walla, walla, bing bang.


Billy Elvis: Isn't that weird? Let's not do that anymore!

Billy Elvis: Now let's bring to the stage, one of the greatest legends of Rock and Roll.


The stage becomes bathed in blue spot light and the music builds as Billy Elvis turns his back to the audience, takes on an "Elvis" stance, pulls off his hat, tosses it to the ground and turns back toward the audience to reveal his Elvis haircut. He licks his fingers, pulls a small section of hair to the front of his forehead and forms a spit curl and than curls his upper lip.


Billy Elvis sings: Well, it's one for the money, two for the show, three to get ready, now go, cat, go. Now don't you step on my blue suede shoes, eh, uh, uh, you can do anything but stay off of my blue suede shoes. (turns to Billy Bass and speaks) Come on, man, let's rock. Now that's alright mama, that's alright for you, That's alright mama, anything you want to do, well it's alright (echo... it's alright).... yeah, it's alright (echo... it's alright).... Yeah, it's alright mama, anything you want to do. (bass solo fills in gap to next song) You ain't nothing but a hound dog, crying all the time, you ain't nothing but a hound dog, crying all the time. You ain't never caught a rabbit and you ain't no friend of mine..... It's now or never, come hold me tight, kiss me my darlin', be mine tonight, tomorrow may be too late, it's now or never (electric guitar plays the famous Elvis intro... da-da, da-da, da-daa, pom-pom, pom-pom, pom-pom. Elvis strikes his famous karate pose as the music swells) My love won't wait!!!!!  (Billy Elvis holds the note out while audience applauds.)


Billy Elvis: (as he turns from Elvis "looks" into a hillbilly and raises his hand) Back to me.... and now we're going to bring out my little brother, Billy, who is going to blow you away with a classical piece entitled the William Tell Overture, but we like to call it the Billy Tell Overture. Ladies and gentlemen, Billy Hill.


The 10,000 Billy Hill Show.....


On Thursday, February 6, 2003, Billy Hill and the Hillbillies featuring original Billies; Kirk Wall, John Marshall, Evan Marshall and Dennis Fetchet  performed for the 10,000th time at the 1:15 show.

The show was attended by 40+ members of their fan club, Da Billy Club, fellow cast members and 25+ Disney Entertainment staff including their boss, Stan Freese.

Following the 1:15 show, the Billies were presented backstage with a huge commemorative plaque and 4 small individual plaques, a cake and a luncheon. Also, working that day was longtime sound technician, Gary Cherno, who has acted as Stage manager/ soundtech with the Billy Hill Show since 1994.


Early 1990's ~ Billy Hill and the Hillbillies playing in Frontierland before they started playing in the Golden Horseshoe.


With crowds like this, no wonder they were moved inside.

To the Golden Horseshoe.....


They had been performing as a bluegrass street band in both, Frontierland and Critter Country, when on Sunday, December 18, 1994, Disneyland officially closed the Golden Horseshoe Jamboree Show, due to declining attendance.

Shortly after, The Hillbillies were approached to perform a scripted version of their street show and their shows began in the Golden Horseshoe in late December of 1994. They performed Thursdays through Mondays for the next 5 years.

To Big Thunder Ranch.....


On Sunday, November 21, 1999, Billy Hill and the Hillbillies moved their show to an impromptu stage at Big Thunder Ranch BBQ to make way for the New Woody’s Round-up Show at the Golden Horseshoe Stage.

The final performance of the Woody's Round-up Show was Monday, July 17, 2000, Disneyland's 47th anniversary. Billy Hill and the Hillbillies made a triumphant return to the Golden Horseshoe on Thursday, July 20, 2000.

Billy Hill had been relegated to an outdoor stage at the Big Thunder Barbecue during Woody’s 8-month gig. In comparison to Woody’s short stay at the Golden Horseshoe Saloon, the original Golden Horseshoe Revue ran for over 31 years — 1955 until 1986.


Critter Country Billy Hill Show

Puddle Prance Ending!

Critter Country Billy Hill Show

Dennis and Kirk on Kazoo!

Critter Country Billy Hill Show

(John Marshall, Kirk Wall, Dennis Fetchet & Tom Sauber)

The Original Billy Hill and the Hillbillies Critter Country Show Script

Circa 1989


Featuring Kirk Wall as Billy Guitar, Mario Hildalgo as Billy Banjo, Dennis Fetchet as Billy Fiddle, and John Marshall as Billy Bass.

This Critter Country version of the show marked the very first appearances of Billy Hill and the Hillbillies. Following the closure of State Fair’s Pigmania Show, John joined with Kirk and Dennis, as well as Mario to form a street show for guests waiting in line for various attractions.

In most “Disneyland Today” Guides at the time, the boys were simply listed as Billy and the Hillbillies. The show was performed for the opening of Critter Country on November 23, 1988 and continued to be performed for the opening of Splash Mountain on July 17, 1989. The attraction had originally been scheduled to open in February of 1989, but construction and design problems plagued the attraction and delayed the opening. This show was later removed and following a brief lay-off, the boys were returned to the streets of Frontierland, where in December of 1994, they officially took over the stage of the Golden Horseshoe.

The show begins with Billy Bass and Billy Banjo calling out to find their long lost brothers, Billy Guitar and Billy Fiddle on the streets of Critter Country. Once guests have gathered around, the two brothers launch into their first song with the bass and banjo squaring off on “Dueling Banjos. The song breaks into a “Spanish Flamenco” where they are joined by their long lost brothers as they dance about flamenco style and play the jug [Dennis] and washboard [Kirk].

As all the brothers gather, Billy Fiddle [Dennis] begins to sing a song called “Billy Hill Music”. He is accompanied with John on bass, himself on mandolin, Kirk on washboard [an early doo-hickey version with all the extra doodads] and Mario on guitar.


Way down south in Critter Country,

Billy Hill music sounds so sweet to me,
Because it sounds so sweet, ah, huh, It’s hard to beat,
[sung deeply by John alone] YEAH,
Billy Hill music certainly was a treat to me.

Went out with my girl, she was talking to me,

Didn’t pass me the jug, cause it wasn’t for me,
Because it sounds so sweet, ah, huh, It’s hard to beat
 [sung deeply by John alone] YEAH,
Billy Hill music certainly was a treat to me.


Went back home, turned on my radio,

It was Billy Hill music, but it’s not Bill Monroe,
Because it sounds so sweet, ah, huh, It’s hard to beat,
[sung deeply by John alone] YEAH,
Billy Hill music certainly was a treat to me.


I took off my socks, I took off my shoes,

Danced all night to those Billy Hill blues,
Because it sounds so sweet, ah, huh, It’s hard to beat,
[sung deeply by John alone] YEAH,
Billy Hill music certainly was a treat to me.
Yes, Billy Hill music certainly was a treat to me.


This song now becomes the “Chicken Reel” where the brothers challenge each other to play their instruments, while also playing various whistles, noise makers and kazoos at the same time and still managing to do a series of complicated choreography moves.

Brother Billy Guitar now announces that his big brother, Billy will now “pick his nose”. Following the objections of his other siblings, he announces that his big brother will now “pick his toes.” More objections arise until Billy Guitar finally announces that his brother will “attempt to play two instruments at once, as he picks the bass with his toes.”

Billy Bass removes his shoe, lays the bass on it’s side, grabs a fiddle and proceeds to accompany himself on the song “Cripple Creek”while he is joined by his family on washboard, guitar and mandolin.

Next, the brothers announce that they are hungry and pull out their “brown bag” lunches from their wood crate. Each has a sandwich except Billy Fiddle, who is eating a hot dog. They discover that the sandwiches can play harmonica music and they launch into “Oh Susannah” with Billy Fiddle in the lead. Sometimes in place of the above song, the brothers would do their version of “She’ll Be Coming Round Splash Mountain When She Comes.”

Following lunch, the brothers return to their prior instruments and proceed to play “Old Joe Clark”.  This song leads into “Will the Circle Be Unbroken” with the following changes:

Will the circle be unbroken, bye and bye, boys, bye and bye,
I’d a rather be a playin’ what’s been played by that other guy.

At this point, Dennis hands his mandolin to Kirk. Kirk hands his guitar to Mario. Mario hands his banjo behind Kirk’s back to Dennis. As John keeps a steady beat, they continue to sing…

Will the circle be unbroken, bye and bye boys, bye and bye,
I’d a rather be a playin’ what’s been played by that other guy.


Dennis now hands Mario’s banjo to Kirk, Kirk hands Dennis’ mandolin to Mario, Mario hands Kirk’s Guitar behind Kirk’s back to Dennis. Still, John keeps a steady beat, as they sing…

Will the circle be unbroken, bye and bye, boys, bye and bye,
I’d a rather be a playin’ what’s been played by that other guy.


Finally Dennis hands Kirk’s guitar back to Kirk. Kirk hands Mario’s banjo to back to Mario. Mario hands Dennis’ mandolin back to Dennis behind Kirk’s back. John now announces that “…he’s getting’ tired.”

This leads them into “Mama, Don’t Allow” . With the following introduction by Billy Guitar [Kirk]: “This song is all about Mama and there’s nothing we love better than … aggravating Mom. We’re gonna do all the things that Mama don’t allow.”

Mama, don’t allow no BLUE’S HARP playing here.
Mama, don’t allow no BLUE’S HARP playing here.
We don’t care what Mama don’t allow, play this BLUE’S HARP anyhow.
Mama, don’t allow no BLUE’S HARP playing here.


Billy Fiddle [Dennis Fetchet] begins to play the Blue’s Harp.

Mama, don’t allow no SPOON playing here.
Mama, don’t allow no SPOON playing here.
We don’t care what Mama don’t allow, play these SPOONS anyhow.
Mama, don’t allow no SPOON playing here.


Billy Banjo [Mario Hildalgo] begins playing the spoons while dancing wildly about on one foot.


Mama, don’t allow no BASS SLAPPING here.
Mama, don’t allow no BASS SLAPPING here.
We don’t care what Mama don’t allow, SLAP this BASS anyhow.
Mama, don’t allow no BASS SLAPPING playing here.


Billy Bass [John Marshall] begins to “slap his bass”.


Mama, don’t allow no FIDDLE playing here.
Mama, don’t allow no FIDDLE playing here.
We don’t care what Mama don’t allow, play this FIDDLE anyhow.
Mama, don’t allow no FIDDLE playing here.


Billy Fiddle [Dennis Fetchet] begins the intro into the “Orange Blossom Special”. Following a comedy routine about train sounds, they add TWO FIDDLES with Mario doing a spirited fiddle dance as he plays. Next they add THREE FIDDLES with Kirk Wall, doing various comedy routines. Last but not least, they add FOUR FIDDLES with John joining the group.

At this point we see the beginning of the “infamous” Puddle Prance circle, although it is not referred to as this. Standing back to back, the four begin playing “Devil’s Dream” as they start to rotate clockwise. Next, will still playing, they break the circle up and begin to march in a clockwise direction, than they turn around and march counter-clockwise. They join in the middle and touch with their left feet, than pair off to do interlinking arm “doe-si-doe’s” in smaller circles. At this point they link arms [a very familiar position to Billy fans over the last 10 years] in a straight row and side-step to the right and than to the left. At the finish of the song, they bow and run off into the mountains of Critter Country.

Kirk Wall (close-up)

PIGMANIA Fall, 1988 during State Fair

(Kirk Wall is in red shirt, Dick Hardwick in Yellow)

The History of Billy Hill and the Hillbillies

  
   John Marshall, Dennis Fetchet and Kirk Wall began performing at Disneyland at different times in the late 1980's. Originally, Kirk, John and Dennis had worked with other groups at Disneyland including Big Thunder Mountain Boys [with Bill Knoft, Raul Reynosa and Paul Schlasky], The Barley Boys, and the Pinewood Pickers.

Kirk had originally been a sub for the comedic lead role in the Golden Horseshoe. While Dennis, John and Evan worked as subs in the band for the Golden Horseshoe Jamboree Show, often playing the part of the wandering fiddler.

One of the first shows that brought the three of them together was Disneyland's State Fair in the fall of 1988. During the State Fair run, an event called Pigmania took place at Big Thunder Ranch. It was in this show that they began to perform together.

After State Fair ended in  October, Disney Entertainment  approached some of it's entertainers about building a street show themed to the recently closed Bear Country area. Set to open in early spring of 1989, the all new Critter Country would feature Disney's latest attraction, Splash Mountain. So John Marshall, Kirk Wall, Mario Hidalgo and Dennis Fetchet began rehearsals for a street show they entitled the "Spit Band", but which eventually became "Billy and the Hillbillies".

Due to construction problems with the newest attraction's flumes, the opening of Splash Mountain was delayed until the park's 34th anniversary on July 17, 1989 and Billy and the Hillbillies finally began their first performances.

Their act consisted of 4 brothers, just down from the hills, who come to entertain guests with an odd assortment of wash boards, whistles, flutes, duck calls, spoons, harmonicas, and horns. The highlights of the act included Billy Bass playing the bass with his feet while accompanying himself on the fiddle, a harmonica quartet played on sandwiches [actually harmonicas disguised as sandwiches], and a number called "Will the  Circle be Unbroken" in which the three remaining brothers would trade instruments in between verses and continue to "play what's been played by the other guy."

At the time, the group consisted of Kirk Wall as front man, rhythm guitar and fiddle, Dennis Fetchet on fiddle, mandolin, guitar, and harmonica, John Marshall on bass and fiddle [and also acting as the band manager] and Mario Hidalgo on banjo, mandolin and fiddle. According to band history, Billy Hill and the Hillbillies officially formed on Wednesday,  August 5, 1992. To see pictures and a description of this original show, go to

They were later joined by John’s brother, Evan Marshall on mandolin and fiddle.

To learn more about the History of the Golden Horseshoe Saloon and the shows that played there,

Try these other Jan's World pages:



Direct from the  Mountains of Santa Monica...


The Original Show Overview:

The typical show begins with the opening of the curtain as Billy Hill and his three brothers [all named Billy] enter and begin playing an intro song that includes “It’s A Small World.” Following a welcome by Billy Elvis, we are treated to two numbers by the band that sometimes include “I Want You To Want Me.”, “Stayin’ Alive”, “Surrey With The Fringe On Top”, “Rocky Top”, “Slue Foot”, or “Thunder Mountain Dew”.


Brother, Billy Mandolin is introduced next, as he launches into “The Billy Tell Overture”. He is joined halfway through by the others, who attempt to distract the crowd with their shenanigans.


Next, Billy Fiddle is introduced as he plays “The Orange Blossom Special”, which concludes with his attempt to break his speed fiddlin’ record. The show concludes with the grand finale…. a comedic parody of River Dance entitled “Puddle Prance”.

The History of the Golden Horseshoe Saloon

Billy Hill and the Hillbillies

 From December 22, 1994 to January 6, 2013