Monday, August 30, 2010

Opry Country Classics--8/31

After taking most of the summer off, Opry Country Classics returns to the Ryman Auditorium for its fall run of shows. The format looks the same, with a spotlight artist being featured. This week the Spotlight Artist is Connie Smith. It is nice to see one of the Opry's top female vocalists being honored and I hope this starts a trend of having Opry members as the featured artist on the shows. I know that in coming weeks, Loretta Lynn is being featured.

This week's show has Bill Cody from WSM radio as the host and will feature:
Jim Ed Brown
Jimmy Fortune
Jeannie Seely
Emily West
Billy Yates

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Kitty Wells

Monday August 30 marks the 91st birthday for the Queen of Country Music, Kitty Wells. She was born Ellen Muriel Deason on August 30, 1919. Now retired, Kitty had her greatest success in the 1950s and 1960s. It was in 1952 that her recording of, "It Wasn't God Who Made Honky Tonk Angels", elevated her to superstar status and marked her emergence as the first female star in country music history.

According to Billboard magazine, Kitty is ranked as the 6th most successful female artist in country music history, behind Dolly Parton, Loretta Lynn, Reba McEntire, Tammy Wynette, and Tanya Tucker.

Her rewards are many. In 1976 she was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame (the 2nd female to be elected to the Hall, following Patsy Cline), and is its oldest living member. In 1991, she received the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award, becoming only the 3rd country music entertainer to be so honored. In 2008, the Hall of Fame honored her with a special exhibit, that was very well done. She was also voted the number-one female country artist for eleven straight years by Billboard magazine, for ten straight years by Cash Box, and the top female artist of the decade by Record World, and she was also the first female country singer to win an award from Downbeat magazine.

On October 30, 1937, at the age of 18, she married Johnnie Wright. (Yes, that will be 73 years of marriage this fall). They had 3 children. Ruby, who died last year, Carol Sue and Bobby. She spent the majority of her career touring with her husband and they retired full time from the road, with a show on December 31, 2000 in Nashville.

After the success of, "It Wasn't God Who Made Honky Tonk Angels", she was invited to become a member of the Grand Ole Opry. What was remarkable about this was that her song was banned for a period of time from being performed on the Opry. According to Kitty's husband"

"We were trying to get her on the Opry, but Vito Pellettieri, the guy who cleared all the songs on the show, says, 'You can't sing that song on the Opry because of the lyrics.' You know, that part about the trusting wife going wrong. Anyway, Roy Acuff went up and talked to Jim Denny and Jack Stapp and he told them, 'Kitty Wells is a female Roy Acuff. She sells songs with her sincerity.' And Honky-Tonk Angels' got to be such a hit, you know, that they had to let her sing it."

Her membership on the Opry ended on December 6, 1964, when she, along with 11 other Opry members were dismissed from the Opry for not meeting the Opry rule on appearances, which at the time was 26 shows per year. But, according to others, money is what really caused the issue. Not only were artists losing the highly paid Saturday night date if they paid the Opry, there were also issues with the percentages paid by the artists to the WSM Artists' Service Bureau.

Again, according to Johnny Wright, Kitty's husband, "They booked some of our dates, and then some of the dates were booked by our personal managers and booking agents. They were charging us fifteen percent on the dates they booked, and then if they didn't book a date you still had to pay them five percent of the dates that you booked yourself. Some of the artists stopped paying the five percent, a lot of them. But Kitty and I paid it right up to the very last, and I told Ott Devine, "Ott, I don't think it's fair for us to pay that and some of them not paying it. Unless you get everybody to pay it, then I'm not gonna pay it.' They didn't fire anyone. We just quit because we didn't want to pay the five percent."

Kitty rarely played the Opry after that and I think that was a great lost to the Opry. Even today, she could have been the female version of Jimmy Dickens, and would be considered one of the legends of the Opry.

Johnny Wright is in poor health now and Kitty spends most of her time at home watching over her husband. She did make an appearance on Marty Stuart's television show earlier this year and looked pretty good. And, she was honored with a show at the Ernest Tubb Record Shop last year.

Her awards, records and influence on country music are to numerous to mention. But, Kitty was the first female superstar in country music and set the path that has been followed by every female artist since then.

Happy Birthday Kitty Wells!!!!

Friday, August 27, 2010

Jimmy C. Newman

One of the Opry's longest members, Jimmy C. Newman is celebrating his 83rd birthday today. He was born on August 27, 1927 near Big Momou, Louisiana. "A Fallen Star" and "Cry Cry Darling" are his two biggest country hits. While he always did a bit of Cajun music, as his recording career declined in the late 1960's and into the 1970's, he formed an almost exclusive Cajun band and became more identified as a singing "Cajun country."

Jimmy has been honored with numerous awards including election into the North American Country Music Association's International Hall of Fame and has been elected into the Cajun Hall of Fame.

He joined the Grand Ole Opry in August 1956 and on August 12, 2006, he was honored for being a Grand Ole Opry member for 50 years.

In honor of Jimmy C. Newman's birthday, here is the Opry line-up from Saturday August 12, 2006.

6:30: Jimmy Dickens(host); Mel McDaniel; Billy Joe Shaver
7:00: Larry Gatlin & The Gatlin Brothers(host); Martina McBride; Julie Roberts; Lee Roy Parnell
8:00: Jim Ed Brown(host); Helen Cornelius; Jan Howard; The Whites; Jean Shepard; Opry Square Dancers
8:30: Jeannie Seely; Jimmy C. Newman

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Grand Ole Opry Line-Up 8/27 & 8/28

The Grand Ole Opry has posted the line-ups for this weekend, and if you have a ticket for the Friday Night Opry, you are in for a great night. The line-up is really loaded with Carrie Underwood, Martina McBride and Dailey & Vincent among the performers. The Friday show will take place at the Ryman Auditorium.

The Saturday night Grand Ole Opry moves over to the War Memorial Auditorium for it's show and the line-up is highlighted by Ronnie Milsap. This will be his 2nd Opry appearance for the year, and he will be joined by Suzy Bogguss, Blaine Larsen and Johnny Counterfit. And after being absent for the past several weekends, Jimmy Dickens is scheduled for both nights.

Now for the line-ups:

Friday August 27
7:00: Diamond Rio(host); Jimmy C. Newman; Jean Shepard; Riders In The Sky
7:30: Jimmy Dickens(host); Connie Smith; Dailey & Vincent
8:15: Bill Anderson(host); Jesse McReynolds & The Virginia Boys; Martina McBride
8:45: Mike Snider(host); Jim Ed Brown; Carrie Underwood

Saturday August 28
7:00: Jimmy Dickens(host); Mike Snider; Blaine Larsen
7:30: Jeannie Seely(host); Johnny Counterfit; Jack Greene
8:15: Riders In The Sky(host); George Hamilton IV; Suzy Bogguss; Opry Square Dancers
8:45: Ronnie Milsap(host); Jan Howard; Jim Ed Brown; Bobby Osborne & The Rocky Top X-Press

The line-up has also been announced for the Tuesday Night Opry on August 31. This show will be at the Ryman Auditorium.

7:00: Jim Ed Brown; Carolina Chocolate Drops
7:30: Jimmy C. Newman; Chris Young
8:15: Bill Anderson; Little Big Town
8:45: Jimmy Dickens; Montgomery Gentry

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Some Thoughts On The Opry House Reopening

I early posted the information regarding the reopening of the Grand Ole Opry House and the return of the Opry on Tuesday September 28. Now for some opinions and thoughts:

I really had hoped that the Opry would have reopened the Opry House on a Saturday night, which is the traditional night for the Opry. Tuesday just doesn't seem right. But, I also know that the Opry wanted to, and needed to get back to the Opry House as soon as they could. And, with the Opry only at the Opry House through October, I know they wanted to get as many dates in as they could.

While I am impressed with the names of those mentioned to appear for the first show, I was somewhat disappointed that some of the Opry's biggest names were not on the list. With the excitement and historical importance of returning to the Opry's home, I really thought there would have been a more impressive list. It's great that Charlie Daniels, Montgomery Gentry, Trace Adkins, Dierks Bentley, Josh Turner, Mel Tillis, Brad Paisley and Diamond Rio are all going to be there, but where are some of the others? Artists such as Carrie Underwood, Dolly Parton, Loretta Lynn, Garth Brooks and Reba? Also, I noticed that Vince Gill, Marty Stuart and Ricky Skaggs are among the missing. I know some of them are on tour and with short notice, perhaps schedules could not be changed. But, as true Opry members, I just thought everyone would, and should, be there. Maybe some more will be added.

I did notice that very few of the Opry's long time, veteran members were listed for opening night. No Jim Ed Brown, Jan Howard, Jean Shepard, Jeannie Seely, Stonewall and others. Like I mentioned, more artists will be added and let's hope that they do not leave out the legends.

It was nice to see Jimmy Dickens at the announcement today. And, he looked pretty good. But then again, he always has. It has been his voice that has been the issue. I do hope he is the first one out on September 28.

I know GAC is televising that night. I don't know if it will be the whole show or just a portion of it. And, I am sure the televised portion will feature the "big" artists such as Brad Paisley, Trace Adkins and Blake Shelton.

And speaking of Blake Shelton, I would not be suprised if on that show he is asked to become the Opry's newest member. To me it just figures that the Opry would use the occasion of it's return to make even more news, and adding a new member is pretty big. And, there have been plenty of hints going around lately that Blake would like to join the Opry and the Opry would like to have him.

When the Opry returns in October, the area around the Opry House is still going to look like a ghost town. The Opryland Hotel is still closed and will not reopen until the middle of November, the mall is still shut down, the Acuff Theater is gone and who knows what is going to happen to the Opry Museum. They will really have to work to create some excitment in the Opry Plaza area. At least parking will not be a problem.

Finally, I hope that management really ramps up the rest of October. The first weekend in October is still looking pretty slim on artists announced so far and the Opry's birthday weekend is looking like it might not be one of the stronger ones in recent memory. Hopefully now that they know the Opry House will be open for sure, they can attract some stronger line-ups. For the weekend following the birthday bash, The Judds will be there for the Friday Night Opry and with the Opry going "Pink" that night for breast cancer awareness, that should draw a good crowd.

Just my thoughts!!!

Grand Ole Opry Returning to Opry House on September 28

The Grand Ole Opry today announced that the Opry will be returning to the Grand Ole Opry House on Tuesday September 28. The artists that have been announced as scheduled to appear that night are Trace Adkins, Jason Aldean, Dierks Bentley, Charlie Daniels Band, Diamond Rio, Jimmy Dickens, Del McCoury Band, Montgomery Gentry, Brad Paisley, Blake Shelton, Mel Tillis and Josh Turner. The show will air on GAC-Great American Country.

Also today, the historical circle was restored to the Opry stage in a ceremony that included Jimmy Dickens and Brad Paisley. ( I will say that Jimmy looked pretty good).

The Opry also announced their plans for the month of October, which will be the only month that the Opry will be at the Opry House before returning to the Ryman Auditorium for it's winter run.

They are having something called the "Spirit of Nashville Day" on October 2. That day will include free tours of the Opry House and music in the Opry Plaza area. The Band Perry will be performing.

The 85th Birthday Bash will take place October 8 and 9 and so far will feature Mike Snider and T. Bubba Bechtol. Other artists will be announced.

The Opry Goes Pink event will take place on October 15 and will feature The Judds. As like last year, the Opry backdrop will be in pink to support breast cancer awareness.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Midnight Jamboree with Charlie Louvin

Last night, Charlie Louvin was the host of the Ernest Tubb Midnight Jamboree. As many of you know, Charlie had surgery just several weeks ago for pancreatic cancer, and as Charlie himself said last night, the surgery was not successful. So for him to be hosting this show last night was just amazing and what an event it was.

For those who did not see it, Charlie spent the entire show sitting in a chair at the center of the stage. He did sing several songs and sounded pretty good. With the camera a bit far away, it was hard to tell how he looked, but he did take off his hat and mentioned about his lack of hair. Charlie was also very engaging with the guest stars that came out for the show. And, what a group of stars it was. Among those singing were Grand Ole Opry members Jean Shepard, Bill Anderson, Jan Howard and Carol Lee Cooper. Bill Anderson did an absolutely awesome, "I Think I'll Go Somewhere And Cry Myself To Sleep." Also performing were Glen Davis, Jennifer O'Brien and many more of his friends. Many of the songs performed were gospel numbers and they seemed to be sung at the request of Charlie, or with the mention on how much they knew Charlie loved this particular song. He did mention that Sonny Osborne was backstage and looking great and he said a special hello to his wife Betty, who was sitting in the first row, although the camera did not show her.

Normally the Midnight Jamboree lasts a little more than an hour. Last night, after 90 minutes, the show was still going strong with more artists to appear. The show really turned into a Charlie Louvin tribute and I think many of those who came to perform, did so to honor Charlie as their friend.

Charlie gave the impression that he really wants to keep going and remain active, even with the upcoming cancer treatments. But, with pancreatic cancer and the fact that the surgery was not successful, the options are limited and I am sure that at his age, it will be tough. Hopefully, he will be strong enough to do the Opry soon. And, speaking of the Opry, and I hate to do it in a bad way, they should also be planning a special show featuring Charlie. He has been a member for over 50 years, and in fact, I do believe he has been a part of the Opry longer than any current member. (Remember that Jimmy Dickens was gone from the Opry for a number of years).

If you missed it, the show will be on WSM next Saturday night at midnight and also the show will be posted on the Ernest Tubb Record Shop website, both in audio form and I think the video of the show will be there also. Usually they get it posted pretty quickly.

Finally, a special thanks to the folks at the Ernest Tubb Record Shop, and to owner David McCormick for asking Charlie to host the midnight jamboree and for letting Charlie invite to be on the show whoever he wanted and allowing them to sing and perform. It is shows like this that makes the midnight jamboree special.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Grand Ole Opry Line-Up 8/20 & 8/21--Updated

The Opry has finished this week's line-up by adding a couple of their standbys, Rebecca Lynn Howard and Daryle Singletary.

It has been a very quiet week around the Grand Ole Opry and I would call it a week when some news was expected, but no news came.

First, the Opry keeps saying that very soon they will announce the plans on returning to the Grand Ole Opry House, but nothing has come as of yet. When I talk to the folks at the Opry ticket office, which I do every couple of days, they keep telling me that they are selling tickets for the Opry House, starting with the Friday October 1st show. The last I was told was that the lower level is almost all sold out, with tickets still available in the balcony. I think that the Opry management just continues to wait to make sure everything will be done and ready. I know it was reported this past week, that outside of Bass Pro Shops, the rest of Opry Mills Mall will probably not reopen until next year and that many of the stores have relocated to other locations and probably will not return to the mall when it reopens. Bass Pro Shops expects to be open for the Christmas season.

The other news that some of us had speculated would come, did not. Several of us thought that the Opry was getting ready to invite Blake Shelton as its newest member and I actually thought it would take place on last night's Tuesday Night Opry. Recent articles have linked Blake more and more with the Opry and recent interviews that he has given, along with Opry President Steve Buchanan seemed to indicate that an invite to join might be coming at some point. Blake just released his new CD, which is number 1 in country music right now. I still think this is a real possibility and if it does happen, I will offer more comments and opinions at that time.

Finally, the Opry has released their line-ups for this weekend. The shows on Friday and Saturday night will take place at the Ryman Auditorium. The highlights for this week include the return of Hal Ketchum to the Opry stage. Hal had posted on his website that he intended to take the year off and this will be his first Opry appearance this year. He is on Saturday night and the one thing that does suprise me is that, considering the quality of the segment hosts on that night, that Hal is not hosting a segment. Also on Saturday night, Lee Greenwood makes an appearance, as does Kathy Mattea, who will also appear Friday night. Now for the line-ups:

Friday August 20
7:00: John Conlee(host); Riders In The Sky; Emily West
7:30: Jeannie Seely(host); Jesse McReynolds & The Virginia Boys; Daryle Singletary
8:15: Bill Anderson(host); Bobby Osborne & The Rocky Top X-Press; Kathy Mattea
8:45: Mike Snider(host); The Whites; Blake Shelton

Saturday August 21
7:00: Riders In The Sky(host); Jimmy C. Newman; Rebecca Lynn Howard
7:30: The Whites(host); Jan Howard; Hal Ketchum
8:15: Jean Shepard(host); Bobby Osborne & The Rocky Top X-Press; Kathy Mattea; Opry Square Dancers
8:45: Bill Anderson(host); Connie Smith; Lee Greenwood

There is a slot to fill both Friday night and Saturday night, and it is in the segment that is traditionally hosted by Jimmy Dickens. It makes me think that maybe Jimmy was on the original schedule for both nights and decided he could not make it and they just bumped up Jeannie Seely and Riders In The Sky to host the segments.

To close out, Charlie Louvin is scheduled to host this week's Ernest Tubb Midnight Jamboree and of last report, is still set to go. This would be amazing for him to return this soon after his cancer surgery, but I am looking forward to this and will be watching the webcast on Saturday night, at 10pm to see how he looks and how he sounds. It should be a great night and I am sure some guest stars will show up to show their support for Charlie.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Grand Ole Opry Line-Up 8/13 & 8/14

The Grand Ole Opry has announced the line-ups for this weekend's shows. Both Friday and Saturday night Opry shows will be at the Ryman Auditorium and the line-ups look pretty good on both nights. On Friday night, the highlights are Vince Gill, Ricky Skaggs and Marty Stuart, along with an appearance by Chuck Wicks. On Saturday night, Crystal Gayle makes an Opry appearance, along with Vince Gill, Amber Digby and Dailey & Vincent. Here are the complete line-ups:

Friday August 13:
7:00: Mike Snider(host); Jeannie Seely; Jimmy C. Newman; Chuck Wicks
7:30: Ricky Skaggs(host); Jim Ed Brown; The Whites
8:15: Bill Anderson(host); The Grascals; Vince Gill
8:45: Marty Stuart(host); Riders In The Sky; Connie Smith

Saturday August 14:
7:00: Bill Anderson(host); Jimmy C. Newman; Amber Digby
7:30: The Whites(host); Bobby Osborne & The Rocky Top X-Press; Mark Wills
8:15: Mike Snider(host); Stonewall Jackson; Crystal Gayle; Opry Square Dancers
8:45: Vince Gill(host); Ray Pillow; Jim Ed Brown; Dailey & Vincent

The Opry has also announced the line-up for the Tuesday Night Opry, August 17, which will take place at the War Memorial Auditorium.

7:00: Riders In The Sky; Troy Olsen
7:30: Jean Shepard
8:15: Bobby Osborne & The Rocky Top X-Press; Eric Church
8:45: Jimmy Dickens; Blake Shelton

On a final interesting note. Bill Anderson is hosting the first segment on Saturday night's show, with Jimmy Dickens gone for the weekend. Bill very rarely has hosted the opening segment on Saturday night, and in fact, the last time he kicked off the Opry was on Saturday October 28, 2006. Just an interesting piece of trivia I wanted to pass on.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Porter Wagoner

I just wanted to take a moment and remember Porter Wagoner, who was born on August 12, 1927. Porter passed away on October 28, 2007, at the age of 80 from lung cancer. Porter joined the Grand Ole Opry on February 23, 1957 and was an Opry member until his death. His last Opry appearance was on Tuesday October 9, 2007, less than a month before he passed away. On Saturday May 19, 2007, Porter was honored for his 50th anniversary as an Opry member during that night's show.

Porter had a truly amazing career in country music. During the course of his career he had 81 singles that were on the charts Among his most famous songs were number one hits, "A Satisfied Mind", "Misery Loves Company", along with "The Cold Hard Facts of Life", "The Carroll County Accident", and "I've Enjoyed As Much of This As I Can Stand". Another one of his big hits that he sang reguarly on the Opry was, "Green, Green Grass of Home".

His Porter Wagoner television show was on the air from 1960 to 1981, and can still be seen on the RFD network today. The performers that toured with Porter, and whom he help started their careers included Norma Jean, Mel Tillis, Speck Rhodes, Buck Trent, Patty Loveless, Jeannie Seely and of course, Dolly Parton, who had numerous duets with.

Porter was famous for inviting James Brown to appear on the Opry. After his break up with Dolly Parton, he formed an all-female group, "The Right Combination". He was also one of the innovators in country music, and at one time owned his own recording studio, Fireside.

Porter and Dolly had a very public break up in the late 1970's, and their final duet, which was recorded prior to their break up, "Making Plans", was a number two hit in 1980. After a number of years of lawsuits and public comments made about each other, Porter and Dolly reconciled in the late 1980's, and appeared several times together after that, including on the Opry. When Porter was elected to the Country Music Hall of Fame in 2002, Dolly was the one who inducted him during the annual CMA awards show.

His final album, "Wagonmaster", was released in June 2007. It was produced by Marty Stuart and the album is considered on of Porter's best albums of his career.

In honor of Porter Wagoner's birthday, I wanted to post the Grand Ole Opry line-up from Saturday May 19, 2007, the night Porter was honored for 50 years of Opry membership.

6:30: Jimmy Dickens(host); The Whites; Jeannie Seely
7:00: Marty Stuart(host); Patty Loveless; Opry Square Dancers; Dolly Parton; Porter Wagoner
8:00: John Conlee(host); Jimmy C. Newman; Connie Smith
8:30: Mike Snider(host); Jean Shepard; Mel Tillis

9:30: Jimmy Dickens(host); The Whites; John Conlee; Mike Snider
10:00: Marty Stuart(host); Patty Loveless; Opry Square Dancers; Dolly Parton; Porter Wagoner
11:00: Jean Shepard(host); Connie Smith; Mel Tillis

Porter was honored on both shows, and Buck Trent was part of Marty's band that night.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Loretta Lynn

It was announced today that The Recording Academy's second annual Grammy Salute to Country Music will honor Grand Ole Opry member and Country Music Hall of Famer, Loretta Lynn. A tribute show will take place on Tuesday October 12 at the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville. At that show, Loretta will receive The Recording Academy President's Merit Award in recognition of her 50 year career in country music. Last year, the first for the award, Vince Gill received the honor

Congratulations to Loretta on this great honor. With the award being given that close to the Opry's birthday weekend, maybe we will get lucky and some of those who are honoring Loretta will be at the Opry that weekend.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Mel Tillis

On Sunday August 8, Lonnie Melvin Tillis, better known to all of us as Mel Tillis, will be celebrating his 78th birthday. Not only is he a great performer with a number of hit records, he is also a prolific songwriter and a movie star. He also invested in music publishing companies and was a radio station owner. He was one of the first country artists to build and perform at a theater in Branson, Missouri.

While his career started in the 1950's, he enjoyed his greatest success in the 1970's, including being named the CMA Entertainer of the Year, the most coveted award in country music.

He became a member of the Grand Ole Opry on June 9, 2007. His daughter Pam handled the formal induction during a televised portion of the Opry. Later that year, he was elected to the Country Music Hall of Fame, entering the hall the same year as Ralph Emery and Vince Gill.

The interesting thing about Mel Tillis is that he was part of the Opry in the 1960's. In fact, he is pictured and his biography is listed in the Grand Ole Opry History Picture Book, volume 4, edition 2, from 1969. He is not pictured in volume 3 or volume 5, however in volume 3, edition 1 from 1966, he is listed in the section of "past and present members and guests of Grand Ole Opry." But nowhere in my files and information can I find the fact that he was actually an official member and if he was, when he became a member. And, in the present Grand Ole Opry history book, his biography lists nothing about him being a previous member. And, to add a final piece to this puzzle, in the Grand Ole Opry History Book from 1969, his biography lists no information relating to him even being an Opry member at that time. It just could be that he was on the Opry so often during that time period that he was almost considered a member, or they thought he was going to be a member and it just didn't work out. This was also the period of time that Mel was part of Porter Wagoner's television show, and Mel was coming to the Opry many Saturday nights with Porter.

Regardless, we know that he did become an official member of the Opry on June 9, 2007, and to honor Mel on his birthday, here is the Opry line-up from that night.

6:30: Jimmy Dickens(host); Hal Ketchum; Jim Ed Brown
7:00: Pam Tillis(host); Darryl Worley; Carolina Rain; Mel Tillis
8:00: Porter Wagoner(host); Mike Snider; Connie Smith; Riders In The Sky; Opry Square Dancers
8:30: Bill Anderson(host); Jimmy C. Newman; Jeannie Seely; Charley Pride

9:30: Jimmy Dickens(host); John Conlee; Darryl Worley
10:00: Porter Wagoner(host); Jimmy C. Newman; Mike Snider; Charley Pride
10:30: Pam Tillis(host); Bobby Osborne & The Rocky Top X-Press; Mel Tillis; Opry Square Dancers
11:00: Bill Anderson(host); Riders In The Sky; Jeannie Seely; Carolina Rain

Tuesday Night Opry--8/10

Here is the line-up for the Tuesday Night Opry, August 10, which will be held at the Ryman Auditorium.

7:00: The Whites; Jason Crabb
7:30: George Hamilton IV; Restless Heart
8:15: Bill Anderson; Jerrod Niemann
8:45: Jimmy Dickens; Desert Rose Band

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Grand Ole Opry Line-up 8/6 & 8/7---Updated

The Grand Ole Opry has posted the line-ups for this weekends shows. The Friday Night Opry will be at the War Memorial Auditorium, because of a previously scheduled concert at the Ryman Auditorium. The Saturday night Grand Ole Opry show will be at the Ryman.

On both the Friday night show and the Saturday night show, there is a slot to be filled. Also, Jimmy Dickens is scheduled for both shows this weekend. We shall see if he makes it or not and if he does, how his voice sounds. Last weekend, it was pretty bad.

Friday August 6:
7:00: Riders In The Sky(host); Jeannie Seely; Elizabeth Cook
7:30: Jimmy Dickens(host); Jimmy C. Newman; Chris Scruggs
8:15: Mike Snider(host); George Hamilton IV; Andy Griggs
8:45: Ricky Skaggs(host); Connie Smith; The Whites

Saturday August 7
7:00: Jimmy Dickens(host); Jimmy C. Newman ; Teea Goans
7:30: Riders In The Sky(host); Jack Greene; Steep Canyon Rangers
8:15: Mike Snider(host); Jan Howard; Radney Foster; Opry Square Dancers
8:45: Steve Wariner(host); Stonewall Jackson; Jeannie Seely; Jim Ed Brown

Terri Clark

Happy Birthday wishes today go to Grand Ole Opry member Terri Clark, who was born on August 5, 1968. Her birth name is Terri Lynn Sauson and she was born in Montreal, Quebec. She is the only Canadian female Opry member. She had some very good success in the early and mid 2000's, however he career has been pretty quiet since about 2007. She has been recording material, but with little commercial success.

On May 15, 2004, during the televised portion of the Opry, she was suprised when host Steve Wariner was joined on stage by her mother and was asked to become the Opry's newest member. She was inducted as an Opry member on June 12, 2004.

In honor of Terri Clark's birthday, here is the Opry line-up from Saturday June 12, 2004, the night Terri Clark became a member of the Grand Ole Opry.

6:30: Jimmy Dickens(host); Jeannie Seely; Osborne Brothers
7:00: Marty Stuart(host); Terri Clark; Mel Tillis; Billy Dean
8:00: Mike Snider(host); Jean Shepard; Billy Walker; Connie Smith; Opry Square Dance Band; Opry Square Dancers
8:30: Bill Anderson(host); George Hamilton IV; Jimmy C. Newman; Pam Tillis

9:30: Jimmy Dickens(host); Jim Ed Brown; Billy Dean
10:00: Pam Tillis(host); Jean Shepard; Mel Tillis
10:30: Marty Stuart(host); Hank Locklin; Connie Smith; Opry Square Dance Band; Opry Square Dancers
11:00: Bill Anderson(host); George Hamilton IV; Jimmy C. Newman; Terri Clark
11:30: Mike Snider(host); Billy Walker; Jack Greene; Julie Roberts

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

A Couple Of Notes Regarding Charlie Louvin

I just wanted to pass along a couple of items and throughts regarding Grand Ole Opry member Charlie Louvin, who recently celebrated his 83rd birthday and is recovering from cancer surgery. Regarding the surgery, from everything I have read and heard, he is home and recovering, although no details have been released.

On the positive side, Charlie just released a new CD called, "Hickory Wind: Live at the Gram Parsons Guitar Pull." I have listened to the CD and it is pretty good. It has a good mix of material ranging from Louvin Brothers songs, to a Roy Acuff number. He also covers Johnny Cash's, "I Still Miss Someone", along with gospel music. As the title says, it is a live album. The reviews have been generally pretty good and from listening to it, his voice is solid. The CD is released on Tompkins Square Records and if you get a chance to listen to it, I hightly recommend it.

And, if that isn't enough, word comes that Charlie has signed with a new record label and will be releasing yet another new album this fall. He has signed with a Canadian label, True North Records. They have already picked a title for the CD, "The Battle Rages On". The CD will feature not only Charlie, but special guests Del McCoury and Jamie Dailey, of Dailey & Vincent.

For a man battling cancer, Charlie is remaining very active. And, he is still planning on returning to live performances by the end of August.

On an editorial note, I cannot believe that someone this active and with the number of fans that he has, is only scheduled for about 1 Opry show a month!!! With the number of CDs that he has recorded over the past several years and the active touring schedule he has, he is one of the most active Opry members. Yet, he is hardly asked to do the Opry. He is a Hall of Famer and always well received at the Opry. He is a legend who is looked up to by many of today's country stars, most notably Emmylou Harris.

Nothing against Jimmy C. Newman, as I enjoy him a lot. But, Jimmy C. is on the Opry everyweek and has not had even close to the number of hits Charlie has had. And Jimmy basically does nothing else but the Opry. I like Jan Howard very much and she still has a great voice. Yet, she is on the Opry every week. And, like Jimmy C., Jan has not come close to the number of hit records that Charlie has had. And, all 3 are close to the same age. Jimmy C. Newman and Jan Howard should be on the Opry everyweek. And, so should Charlie Louvin!!!!