The father and son duo of Chuck and Ben Suchy says more about North Dakota than just a couple of music makers getting together on a Sunday afternoon. As you may know if you’ve been reading North Dakota 365, the Suchys farm south of Mandan. They’re quiet, unassuming people who diligently go about their work. Chuck has been at it long enough he is easing out of the farm, passing it on to the next generation, Ben’s siblings.
Chuck is also known as the North Dakota troubadour. He writes his own music, lyrics and melody. His lyrics tell stories, perhaps of a 1928 Indian Chief Motorcycle, or of a family matriarch whom everyone can relate to. If you listen to Garrison Keilor’s Prairie Home Companion, you’ve heard Chuck sing his stories.
On this Sunday afternoon, the father and son duo were on the patio of a local watering hole on the banks of the Missouri River in Mandan. They played solo and they played as a duet. They played as a team as equals who share a common gift, the gift of song.
These are the kind of summer days that make memories in North Dakota. They’re the kind of days that get you through the long cold winters because you know in a few months, you’ll be back out on the patio, listening to Chuck and Ben sing the stories of life on the Northern Plains. They carry their music all across the Midwest. Have you had a chance to hear them?