Before posting and commenting on this week's Grand Ole Opry schedule, I just wanted to follow up on the Carol Lee Cooper item that I had last week. Yesterday I received my electronic copy of the Bill Anderson Fan Club Newsletter. In it, he has a section where he answers letters and questions from fans and one of this months questions had to do with Carol Lee Cooper and asking why she doesn't sing with her group anymore. The response from Bill was that "Carol Lee has had some health issues and has taken a leave of absence from singing and performing. We all hope, as she does, that she will be able to return shortly. We miss her just as you do." So that is the latest and I will say that Bill seems to be the first Opry member to comment on her situation publicly.
As far as the Opry this weekend, the show continues its winter run at the Ryman Auditorium with one show on Friday Night and one show on Saturday night. Looking at the line ups for the shows, there is really nothing special to report. No blockbuster names this weekend, but a good mix of talent. The very talented guitar player Doyle Dykes is scheduled for both shows this weekend. Joining Doyle on Friday night will be Opry members Ralph Stanley and Diamond Rio and non-Opry member, but frequent Opry guest, Danny Gokey. Saturday night's Grand Ole Opry will feature non-members Eden Edge along with newcomer Andy Gibson. He is another in the string of newcomers that Pete Fisher seems to be inviting to perform on the Opry. He is from the west coast and has been featured on GAC.
Friday January 6
7:00: John Conlee (host); Connie Smith; Danny Gokey
7:30: Jimmy Dickens (host); Jimmy C Newman; Doyle Dykes
8:15: Mike Snider (host); Jim Ed Brown; Ralph Stanley
8:45: Riders In The Sky (host); Jesse McReynolds; Diamond Rio
Saturday January 7
7:00: Jimmy Dickens (host); Jeannie Seely; Andy Gibson
7:30: Mike Snider (host); George Hamilton IV; Connie Smith; Bo Bice
8:15: John Conlee (host); Jean Shepard; Edens Edge; Opry Square Dancers
8:45: Riders In The Sky (host); Bobby Osborne & Rocky Top X-Press; Doyle Dykes
That comes out to 12 artists on Friday night, with 10 Opry members and 13 artists on Saturday night with 9 Opry members. Also interesting is that the segment hosts are the same 4 that hosted segments last week.
No live Ernest Tubb Midnight Jamboree this weekend as now through the middle of February they will be running archived shows. This week's show is hosted by Ernest Tubb. I don't know from what year and who the guest artists are, but it will be interesting and fun to listen back and her old Ernest again.