Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Grand Ole Opry 6/28 & 6/29

The Grand Ole Opry closes out the month of June with the usual Friday Night Opry and Saturday's Grand Ole Opry. 1 show each night. The Friday Night Opry will feature former Opry member BJ Thomas. BJ gave up his Opry membership shortly after becoming an Opry member, but he still will make an occasional appearance on the show. Also on Friday night will be bluegrass favorite Sam Bush along with Ashley Monroe. This week's Opry newcomer will be the American folk-rock group, Delta Rae, out of North Carolina. And finally, Friday's show will feature the ACM Lifting Lives Music Campers. This group makes an annual Opry appearance, usually with Trace Adkins. However this year, they will be featured on the segment hosted by Jeannie Seely.

Saturday's Grand Ole Opry will feature a return appearance by Carolina Chocolate Drops, who will also be signing in the Opry Shop after the show. Non-Opry favorite Crystal Gayle and frequent guest Kristen Kelly are also scheduled, along with a return appearance by Tate Sevens.

Friday June 28:
7:00: Riders In The Sky (host); Craig Campbell; Mike Snider
7:30: Jim Ed Brown (host); Delta Rae; BJ Thomas
8:15: Bill Anderson (host); Sam Bush; Ashley Monroe
8:45: Jeannie Seely (host); Jerrod Niemann; ACM Lifting Lives Music Campers

(for those counting at home, that is only 5 Opry members scheduled on this show)

Saturday June 29:
7:00: Riders In The Sky (host); Kristen Kelly; Jimmy C Newman; Bobby Osborne & The Rocky Top X-Press
7:30: Mike Snider (host); The Whites
8:15: Larry Gatlin (host); Jean Shepard; Carolina Chocolate Drops; Opry Square Dancers
8:45: Bill Anderson (host); Tate Stevens; Crystal Gayle

The internet and facebook have all been full of the news regarding Jimmy Dickens. As mentioned previously, I hope things go well and he will be back at the Opry soon. He is missed and certainly the last link to an era.

Enjoy the weekend and the Opry and I will be back to more posting later in the weekend.


  1. I'm beginning to think we should send Larry Gatlin to the homes of Marty Stuart and Lorrie Morgan to say, yo, where are you?

  2. I'm just so sad that the Opry features so few members any more. Or for that matter, so few acts in general. When I started going regularly in the late 80s we'd go to the Friday Night Opry that ran for something like three hours, then go to both Saturday Night Shows. We might also go to the Opry Matinee that always had seven or eight Opry stars (only time I ever saw Minnie Pearl) or we'd go to the Bill Monroe Bluegrass Show during the Opry Birthday celebration and it wasn't uncommon to meet 10 or 12 Opry stars at the autograph party and FREE backstage tour of the Opry House. There was SO much excitement because looking back at some of my programs there were between 20 and 22 Opry members on each show. We didn't see a lot of "superstars" but we always saw legends like Roy Acuff, Hank Snow, Bill Monroe, Grandpa Jones, Porter Wagoner. You could almost feel the anticipation in the air when you lined up outside the Opry House to get in while Grant Turner did the warm-up show live from center stage and then when you came out, the 9:30 crowd was lined up waiting to get in. When I was in Nashville in June, I walked around the Opry House as the Tuesday Night Opry was underway but didn't go to the show because quite honestly even though Keith Urban and Rascal Flatts are members, they don't interest me along with Kellie Pickler and a finalist from the Voice. It was a much different feeling outside (and even inside in the gift shop.) The door was open to the Opry Museum and I could see it was just a storage building. It wasn't uncommon especially during holidays to go through the Museum and they'd have an Opry Star standing on the Ryman stage display signing autographs and taking pictures. Met Jim Ed Brown there one night before the Opry. Walked by Roy Acuff's house and remembered the night we saw him walk down the sidewalk and through the front door of his house between Opry shows. The piece of grass that was once the Roy Acuff and Minnie Pearl Museums and the empty spot that was the Gaslight Theater where we went to see Nashville Now taped. Nashville (and country music in general) were much different places. More "down home", more fan centered. I guess that was before the marketers figured out they could make a lot more money off country music if they took it more uptown. I know times change but still makes me sad. I'm in my 40s and the reason I love the Opry today is because people like Jimmy Newman, Wilma Lee Cooper, Skeeter Davis, Jean Shepard, Billy Walker, Charlie Louvin, George Hamilton IV, Jim Ed Brown, Charlie Walker were so real and down-to-earth when I met them. (oldtimeopry)

  3. Have you looked at Marty's tour schedule lately? His concerts are mostly Thursday-Sunday.


  4. A.B., I know that he's touring, but it also seems to me that even those who love the Opry as much as he does have been a little scarcer than they should have been.

  5. Even Connie was missing for over 6 weeks and its very unusual for her not to make at least 4 shows a month.

  6. I'm with you all the way Anonymous #1; you echo what I have said many times before; those Fri and Sat night shows that went all evening FULL of performers were wonderful; it just is not the same anymore; we used to make several trips a year to Nashville and the GRAND OLE OPRY but now only go for the anniversary weekend and it definitely is NOT the same either; last year was a huge disappointment; we will probably stick it out until the 90th and then start going on other trips that will be more entertaining.

  7. Fred, Bismarck:

    Hooray for the Carolina Chocolate Drops! After hearing them on "Milwaukee Blues" tonight, I have to believe they're the real thing, and I'll be looking into their CDs. Thanks, Pete Fisher. The Opry Square Dance Band was also rousing, and I was happy the drum was toned down this time.

  8. I was able to listen to most of the first hour before our cable and internet went down, and then I had to be out. A friend gave me a Carolina Chocolate Drops CD for Christmas, and they are very good, indeed. Sorry I missed the Square Dance Band, which consists of Earl White and ... his fiddle, yes, with the staff band. Eddie Stubbs used to haul out his fiddle and perform with them. I wonder if there's a union issue! I suspect it's just that Eddie only does Fridays now, but I think he had stopped working with them when the Opry was still the Opry and did more shows on Saturday night.

  9. Oldtimeopry-I hear what you are saying loud and clear. I understand change and some is for the better even if I don't like it. I'm 47 and have listened to the Opry since a small child, really began listen every week about 1980 and started going regular in the late 80's. I too am sad at how much has changed. I don't bend as easy as some might say I should and eventually it may break me but I'll take my chances. Listening to the Opry this weekend I heard a couple performers that I won't name who should be ashamed to walk out there and sing flat as a pancake after someone who is 70 or 80 just performed and sounded every bit as good or better. It just seems that so much of the integrity is gone as with so many other things these days. It's not that I only like those from years gone by, I just want to hear good music from humble people who stand for something more than a hit song and a dollar. As I have said before, there are some new and/or young folks who get it and that is great. Bad thing is, there are a lot more of them than the big cigar puffing guys will let us hear.

    I've been blessed to also meet all those folks you named and completely agree. They and others made me proud to tell those who do not understand just why the Opry and country music is so special. They were/are gracious ambassadors for the Opry and not appreciated enough.

    Regardless of what we think or feel it looks like they are filling seats and the crowds seem to respond. I have always held that some of the public can't think for themselves and if they are told it is good, you should like this, they will fall right in line. In this PC day I think that may be where those like us just don't fit in.

    Be thankful we have our wonderful experiences and memories to fall back on.

    One last slightly off subject comment. Did anyone else think that Jean Shepard sounded good and strong last night?

    Knightsville, IN