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Dean Armstrong and the Arizona Dance Hands formed in 1948 as the house band for the Open Door Night Club in Tucson, Arizona.
From Left to Right, that's Toni Clark, Dean Armstrong, Don Johnson, and Earl Mock.
Three-a-week radio programs from the bandstand brought them to the attention of Gene Autry, and when he opened KOLD-TV in 1953, the Dance Hands became the staff musicians. In fact, they performed the first ever live TV show in Tucson. The Dance Hands continued to perform live TV until 1976. Today, you can see the band perform at Lil Abner's Steakhouse and on Tucson Community Cable 73.
Dean Armstrong was born and raised in a farming community in Illinois. From a very early age, he dreamed of playing the guitar. When Dean was eight years old, his father traded a calf to a neighbor for an old guitar. He practiced guitar constantly, and during high school, he attended Joliet Conservatory of Music. He later taught guitar at the Conservatory. After graduating from High School, he married his schoolday sweetheart, Ardith. This year, he celebrated his 57th wedding anniversary with her.