Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Grand Ole Opry 3/21/& 3/22

After all the excitement last weekend with the 40th anniversary of the Opry House, it is back to normal for the Opry this weekend with two shows, the Friday Night Opry and Saturday's Grand Ole Opry.

The Friday Night Opry will feature Opry members Oak Ridge Boys, who will be hosting a segment. If my records are right, this will be their first time as hosts, as the Opry continues to add some new faces as hosts. Also appearing on Friday night will be Opry member Charlie Daniels. Guest artists will include one of my favorites, Kathy Mattea, along with The Grascals.

The Grand Ole Opry on Saturday night will feature guest artists The Black Lillies, The Steeldrivers, Wild Blue Country, who is making their annual appearance, and the ever present Chris Janson.

Friday March 21
7:00: Jim Ed Brown (host); Kim Richey; The Whites
7:30: Jeannie Seely (host); Caitlin Rose; The Grascals
8:15: Oak Ridge Boys (host); Greg Bates; Kathy Mattea
8:45: Connie Smith (host); Charlie Daniels Band

Saturday March 22
7:00: Jim Ed Brown (host); Striking Matches; Jimmy C Newman
7:30: Jeannie Seely (host); Wild Blue Country; The Steeldrivers
8:15: The Whites (host); Jean Shepard; Chris Janson; Opry Square Dancers
8:45: Connie Smith (host); The Black Lillies

When all is said and done, just 6 Opry members each night.

This week at the Ernest Tubb Midnight Jamboree, the host will be Jesse McReynolds, who will be saluted on his 50th year as an Opry member. I am sure there will be some guest artists with him and some surprises.

Looking back at past Grand Ole Opry line-ups, I have 2 for this week. First is from Saturday March 23, 1974. This would be the 2nd show to have taken place at the new Grand Ole Opry House. Of course, the opening night featured most of the Opry's members. The 2nd week it was back to business as usual with the Opry line-up. Not a bad line-up, but one that was close to normal for the times. A couple of guest artists including Merle Kilgore and Jimmy Dickens, who was not an Opry member at that time.

1st show
6:30: Mrs. Grissoms
Willis Brothers (host): Truck Stop
Merle Kilgore: Wolverton Mountain
Willis Brothers: Cool Water

6:45: Rudy's
Wilma Lee & Stoney Cooper (host): Poor Ellen Smith
Justin Tubb: Rambling Man
Del Wood: Keep On The Firing Line
Wilma Lee & Stoney Cooper: Coming Down From God

7:00: Rudy's
Roy Acuff (host): When I Lay My Burdens Down
Jean Shepard: At The Time
Jimmy Dickens: Take An Old Cold Tater
Minnie Pearl: Maple On The Hill
Jean Shepard: Second Fiddle
Jimmy Dickens: We Could

7:30: Standard Candy
Stu Phillips (host): Pride
Dottie West: Country Sunshine
Johnny Carver: Tie A Yellow Ribbon
Crook Brothers/Stoney Mountain Cloggers: Soldier's Joy
Stu Phillips: I'd Rather Be Sorry
Dottie West: Last Time I Saw Him
Stu Phillips: There Must Be Another Way To Say Goodbye

8:00: Martha White
Roy Drusky (host): Second Hand Rose
Connie Smith: Dallas
Ernie Ashworth: Honky-Tonk Hardwood Floor
Louie Roberts: Don't Worry/Tonight Carmen
Roy Drusky: One Day At A Time
Connie Smith: He Touched Me
Ernie Ashworth: Talk Back Trembling Lips
Roy Drusky: Alone With You

8:30: Stephens
Jim Ed Brown (host): Stay A Little Longer
4 Guys: Hello Walls/Big Bad John/Wings Of A Dove
Stan Hitchcock: The Same Old Way
Fruit Jar Drinkers: Katy Hill
Jim Ed Brown: Sometimes Sunshine
4 Guys: Down By The Lazy River
Stan Hitchcock: You Gave Me A Mountain
Cates Sisters: Uncle Pen

2nd show
9:30: Kellogg's
Wilma Lee & Stoney Cooper (host): Big Midnight Special
Willis Brothers: Bob
Ernie Ashworth: Honky-Tonk Hardwood Floor
Merle Kilgore: Ring Of Fire
Wilma Lee & Stoney Cooper: I Dreamed About Mama Last Night
Willis Brothers: Truck Stop
Stoney Cooper: Golden Slippers

10:00: Fender
Roy Drusky (host): Strangers
Dottie West: Country Sunshine/Last Time I Saw Him
Roy Drusky: Don't It Make You Want To Go Home

10:15: Union 76
Roy Acuff (host): Wabash Cannonball
Del Wood: There's A Big Wheel
Roy Acuff: The Great Speckled Bird

10:30: Trailblazer
Justin Tubb (host): Bad, Bad Leroy Brown
Jean Shepard: At The Time
Johnny Carver: Country Lullaby
Justin Tubb: Traveling Singing Man

10:45: Beech Nut
Stu Phillips (host): Crystal Chandeliers
Connie Smith: Dallas
Crook Brothers/Stoney Mountain Cloggers: Cotton-Eyed Joe
Stu Phillips: A Castle; A Cabin

11:00: Coca-Cola
Jim Ed Brown (host): Southern Loving
Jimmy Dickens: Out Behind The Barn
Cates Sisters: Uncle Pen
Fruit Jar Drinkers: Cacklin Hen
Jim Ed Brown: Why Me Lord?
Jimmy Dickens: John Henry
Sam McGee: Farewell Blues/Alabama Jubilee/Just Because
Jim Ed Brown: Pop A Top

11:30: Elm Hill
4 Guys (host): Cottonfields/Maria
Stan Hitchcock: I'm Back In Baby's Arms
Louie Roberts: Just A Little Lovin/Anytime/Bouquet Of Roses/Cattle Call
4 Guys: Fall Away
Stan Hitchcock: Just Call Me Lonesome
4 Guys: Let Me Be There

Quite a difference from the weekend before!!

The 2nd line-up that I want to feature this week is from 46 years ago, Saturday March 23, 1968. On this particular night, Johnny Cash performed on the Opry. At the time, he was about the biggest name in country music and performed 2 spots on the show. As with the previous show listed, quite a few guest artists on this show.

7:30: Standard Candy
Billy Walker (host): Let's Think About Living
Willis Brothers: Bob
Rita Faye: Hide Away Honey
Cousin Jody: Mr. Fernsworth's Rooster
Billy Walker: Sundown Mary
Harold Weakley: Since Never
Willis Brothers: Drivings In My Blood
Billy Walker: Funny How Time Slips Away

8:00: Martha White
Flatt & Scruggs (host): Rollin' In My Sweet Baby's Arms
Hank Locklin: Country Hall Of Fame
Cheryl Poole: I'm So Lonesome I Could Cry
Pete Sayers: I Washed My Face In The Morning Dew
Flatt & Scruggs: Foggy Mountain Breakdown
Crook Brothers: Cotton-Eyed Joe

8:30: Stephens
Bobby Lord (host): Live Your Life Out Loud
Ernie Ashworth: Talk Back Trembling Lips
Bobby Lewis: Love Me And Make It All Better
Archie Campbell: The Cock Fight
Bobby Lord: When The Snow Falls
Dick Miles: The Last Goodbye
Archie Campbell & Lorene Mann: The Dark End Of The Street
Bobby Lord: Hawkeye

9:00: Luzianne
Roy Drusky (host): Strangers
Dottie West: Here Come My Baby
Johnny Cash: Folsom Prison Blues/Guess Things Happen That Way/I Still Miss Someone/Orange Blossom Special/I Walk The Line
Johnny Cash & June Carter: Jackson
Fruit Jar Drinkers: Alabama Gal
Dottie West: Paper Mansions
Roy Drusky: Anymore

9:30: Kellogg's
Hank Snow (host): Caribbean
Willis Brothers: Give Me 40 Acres
Bill Carlisle: Leave That Liar Alone
Terry Green: Jambalaya.Hey Good Lookin
Hank Snow: These Hands
Bill Carlisle: No Help Wanted
Chubby Wise: Florida Blues
Hank Snow: Conscience, I'm Guilty

10:00: Fender
Billy Walker (host): Cross The Brazos At Waco
Ernie Ashworth: Mind Your Own Business
Cousin Jody: Steel Guitar Rag
Billy Walker: Drinking Champagne

10:15: Pure
Bobby Lord (host): Shadows On The Wall
Cheryl Poole: Swinging Blue
Dick Miles: The Last Goodbye
Bobby Lord: Live Your Life Out Loud

10:30: Buckley's
Flatt & Scruggs (host): Nine Pound Hammer
Archie Campbell & Lorene Mann: The Dark End Of The Street
Flatt & Scruggs: Who Will Sing For Me/Foggy Mountain Breakdown

10:45: Newport
Hank Locklin (host): Before The Next Teardrop Falls
Pete Sayers: Take This Hammer
Crook Brothers: Sally Goodin
Hank Locklin: Love Song For You

11:00: Coca-Cola
Hank Snow (host): Miller's Cave
Johnny Cash: Big River/Give My Love To Rose/Folsom Prison Blues/Ring Of Fire/Understand Your Man
Johnny Cash & June Carter: Jackson
Kenny Roberts: She Taught Me To Yodel
Fruit Jar Drinkers: Old Joe Clark
Hank Snow: Trouble In Mind
Sam McGee: Railroad Blues

11:30: Lava
Roy Drusky (host): Alone With You
Bill Carlisle: I've Waited Too Long
Dottie West: Night Train To Memphis/Wabash Cannonball
Terry Green: There Goes My Everything
Roy Drusky: Peel Me A Nanner
Bill Carlisle: What Kind Of Deal Is This
Dottie West: Funny, Familiar, Forgotten Feeling
Roy Drusky: Weakness In A Man

For those keeping track, Johnny Cash performed for 12 minutes during his 1st spot and 11 minutes on the 2nd. Also, interesting that Dottie West did 2 Roy Acuff numbers during the last segment.

Finally, here is the line-up for the Tuesday Night Opry, March 25:

7:00: Gwen Sebastian; Jesse McReynolds
7:30: Chase Rice; John Conlee
8:15: Parmalee; Connie Smith
8:45: Easton Corbin; Craig Morgan

Enjoy the Opry this weekend!!!!


  1. Fred, Bismarck:

    Just an impression, not meant to be a definitive statement:

    I loved the Crook Brothers, but it seems to me at least possible they were guilty of the same alleged offense that got DeFord Bailey fired: playing the same 9 or 10 numbers all the time. Same applies to the McGee brothers. It's easy to see at least the possibility of a double standard operating here with the Ol' Judge!

    I take a back seat to no one in my impatience with modern "victimhood" and all the political BS that goes with it. In the case of DeFord, who had to cope in the old days, I think I get the point.

  2. Fred, Bismarck:

    P.S. But would I have gotten the point in the old days? Probably not!

  3. Fred, for what it's worth, I have several CD's made by Earl White, the Opry's square dance fiddler (and the last performer on there who worked for one of the string bands--the only other one alive, so far as I know, is Larry McNeely, who worked for them while he was a Smoky Mountain Boy). Earl does about, I'd say, 30 different numbers between those CD's, but doesn't do all of them on the Opry. I don't know how much of that is the other musicians and how much of that is the dancers maybe having a say in it--if not now, then when Ben Smathers and the Sloans ran the groups. Earl did a live CD and had 12 different numbers on it, so I know that he has played at least that many different ones on the Opry, and there are a couple of others that he doesn't have there that are on other CDs.