Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Grand Ole Opry 7/15 & 7/16

I think everyone knows by now that Bill Anderson will be celebrating his 50th anniversary as an Opry member on Saturday night. He will be hosting the final segment on both shows that evening and will be joined by Connie Smith, who's career is connected many ways to Bill's and who has had great success recording Bill Anderson's songs through the years, and Jon Randall, who has co-written many songs with Bill.

In addtion to honoring Bill on Saturday night, Ronnie Milsap returns to the Opry stage and will be hosting segments on both shows. Saturday night will also feature Darrell McCall, who will be co-hosting the Ernest Tubb Midnight Jamboree later that evening, James Wesley and Jimmy Wayne.

The Friday Night Opry will feature non-Opry members The Cleverlys, a bluegrass act who will be making their first Opry appearance, Randy Montana, Michael Grimm, who was featured on "America's Got Talent", and Restless Heart, along with a return appearance by Stonewall Jackson, who has made only a couple of Opry appearances so far this year.

Friday July 15:
7:00: Jeannie Seely(host); Jimmy C Newman; The Cleverlys
7:30: Jimmy Dickens(host); Mike Snider; Randy Montana
8:15: George Hamilton IV(host); Stonewall Jackson; Jean Shepard; Michael Grimm
8:45: Riders In The Sky(host); Jack Greene; Restless Heart

Saturday July 16:
First Show
7:00: Jimmy Dickens(host); Jeannie Seely; James Wesley
7:30: Mike Snider(host); Jean Shepard; Jimmy Wayne
8:00: Ronnie Milsap(host); Riders In The Sky; Darrell McCall; Opry Square Dancers
8:30: Bill Anderson(host); Connie Smith; Jon Randall

Second Show
9:30: Jimmy Dickens(host); Jean Shepard; James Wesley
10:00: Riders In The Sky(host); George Hamilton IV; Jimmy Wayne
10:30: Ronnie Milsap(host); Jan Howard; Darrell McCall; Opry Square Dancers
11:00: Bill Anderson(host); Connie Smith; Jon Randall

Here is the line up for the Tuesday Night Opry, July 19:

7:00: John Conlee; Brett Eldredge
7:30: Sunny Sweeney; Steel Magnolia
8:15: Mandy Barnett; Ricky Skaggs
8:45: Jimmy Dickens; Dierks Bentley


  1. I wouldn't be surprised if Ol' Whisper gets a surprise or two during his segment.

  2. I would hope so. For his 50th and the build up to it, it is not really a special line up for the night. If you remember the night Porter Wagoner had is 50th, Dolly Parton, Marty Stuart, Buck Trent and Patty Loveless were all on his segment of the show.

  3. Of course, for George Hamilton IV, Jimmy C Newman, Charlie Louvin, Jean Shepard and Billy Grammer nothing special was done except for Pete Fisher coming out and giving them the watch. At least Bill gets to host his segment.

  4. I hate to say it this way, but I wonder how much of how Fisher treats these anniversaries has to do with who has power backstage, so to speak. If Dickens and Anderson, and some others we could name, took a page from Mr. Acuff, Ernest Tubb, and Minnie Pearl, and went after the manager's head, Fisher just might be in trouble.

    That said, I'd note that for Porter Wagoner's 50th, they were still televising and it was a one-hour show. But if you think about it, why aren't all of those artists for whom Bill Anderson wrote #1 hits showing up for this?

  5. I know it is a tough time of year right now as many of the artists that Bill has influenced are on the road doing some heavy touring, Brad Paisley for example.

    As far as going over Pete Fisher's head, I wonder who they would go to. I know Steve Buchanan is the President of the Opry, so it could be him, or the head of Gaylord Entertainment, which is Colin Reed, who I know is at the Opry on occasion. But as we know, it is not like the old days when a Roy Acuff or Ernest Tubb could just stroll into the WSM office and tell them how the Opry should be run, and that's the way it would be run. I had read somewhere that back in the day, Roy was basically in charge of the male Opry members and Minnie Pearl was in charge of the female Opry members, and they basically kept everyone in line.


  7. If you are asking if any station is going to have on Bill's 50th Opry anniversary, there is no television station that is going to show it. I would assume that GAC or one of the other country cable stations will have highlights.

    Of course WSM and will have it and I am sure that at, or on their facebook page, they will have a video of it posted in a few days.