Update: Several changes to the original line-ups that were announced. For the 2nd week in a row, Pam Tillis has cancelled out. Mallary Hope replaces her. Jamie O'Neal has been added to the empty slot for Friday night. On Saturday night, Andy Griggs as been added, as has Chuck Meal & His Grassy Knoll Boys. The line-up listed below includes the updates.
The Grand Ole Opry is moving into one of its better months as June traditionally offers up some strong shows, especially those that take place during the period of the annual CMA Music Fest that takes place in Nashville. The city is loaded with tourists and there are many shows to choose from, including Opry performances.
As far as this week, I have to tell you in this era of the Opry announcing their line-ups ahead of time (versus the era for many of us when you didn't know who was going to be there until you got to the show), it still bugs me when you cannot get a complete line-up the day before the show. This week for example, the announced schedule has an opening on the Friday Night Opry and two on the Saturday Grand Ole Opry. If past behavior and booking policies follow, the slots will be filled by some lesser known talent instead of an Opry member.
As far as the Friday Night Opry, Vince Gill will be making a return to the Opry stage. He has been gone way too long for him. Also, the great Ralph Stanley will be joining Vince. Ralph will also be doing the Grand Ole Opry on Saturday night. I have enjoyed Ralph over the years and I will have to say I have been disappointed that he has not done more Opry appearances since joining. He is not that far away and he is still doing some limited touring. Pam Tillis, who failed to make it last weekend as advertised, is scheduled for Friday night, along with non-member, but frequent Opry guest Jim Lauderdale.
The Grand Ole Opry on Saturday night will have, along with Ralph Stanley, frequent Opry guests Steel Magnolia, and Mallary Hope, who have late has been on the Opry quite a bit.
Friday June 1
7:00: Jim Ed Brown (host); Jean Shepard; Jamie O'Neal
7:30: Jimmy Dickens (host); Jimmy C Newman; Jim Lauderdale
8:15: Bill Anderson (host); Bobby Osborne & The Rocky Top X-Press; Mallary Hope
8:45: Vince Gill (host); Ralph Stanley; Connie Smith
Saturday June 2
7:00: Jimmy Dickens (host); Jesse McReynolds; Mallary Hope
7:30: Mike Snider (host); Jim Ed Brown; Andy Griggs
8:15: Jeannie Seely (host); George Hamilton IV; Steel Magnolia; Opry Square Dancers
8:45: Bill Anderson (host); Ralph Stanley; Chuck Mead & His Grassy Knoll Boys
As currently constructed, the Friday show has 11 artists, of whom 10 are Opry members, which is good to see, while on Saturday night, 10 artists are listed, of which 8 are Opry members. Still shameful to have only 8 of 65 Opry members on a show.