Thursday, June 12, 2014

Grand Ole Opry 6/13 & 6/14

The Grand Ole Opry has posted the line-ups for the shows this weekend. There will be the usual Friday Night Opry and Saturday's Grand Ole Opry. I have to admit that after looking at the line-ups, they are certainly not the best that the Opry has had lately.

The Friday Night Opry will feature another artist from "Nashville", Chaley Rose, along with frequent Opry guests The Willis Clan and TG Sheppard. As far as Opry members, it is limited pretty much to several of the veteran artists.

Saturday's Grand Ole Opry will feature a few guests that have seen the Opry stage before, including Keith Anderson, Aubrey Peoples and Annie Moses Band. Nothing against Annie Moses Band, as they are talented, but unless they fill another act into that last segment, they are the only guest and I don't think they are good enough for that.

So far, Jeannie Seely is the only artist listed for the 1st segment on Saturday night. You have to think Jimmy Dickens is on stand-by for one of those slots, and I am sure the other slot will be filled by someone that has seen the Opry stage many times, as Pete seems to have his "go-to" list to use.

Friday June 13
7:00: John Conlee (host); Kalisa Ewing; Jean Shepard
7:30: Jeannie Seely (host); Jesse McReynolds
8:15: Riders In The Sky (host); Jan Howard; Jimmy C Newman; Chaley Rose
8:45: Connie Smith (host); TG Sheppard; The Willis Clan

Saturday June 14
7:00: Jeannie Seely (host);
7:30: Jim Ed Brown (host); Bobby Osborne & The Rocky Top X-Press; Keith Anderson
8:15: The Whites (host); George Hamilton IV; Aubrey Peoples; Opry Square Dancers
8:45: Riders In The Sky (host); Annie Moses Band

8 and 6 Opry members each night. Terrible!! The Ernest Tubb Midnight Jamboree is hosted this week by one of my favorites and former Opry guest, Suzy Bogguss. Personally, I would call her to see if she had an interest in the Opry on Saturday night. Based on what is scheduled, they could use her.

For comparison, here is the posted Grand Ole Opry line-up from this weekend 5 years ago, June 12 & 13, 2009:

Friday June 12
7:00: Pam Tillis (host); Jimmy C Newman; Riders In The Sky; Del McCoury Band
7:30: Jimmy Dickens (host); Jean Shepard
8:00: Bill Anderson (host); Mike Snider; Emerson Drive
8:30: Charley Pride (host); Stu Phillips; Bobby Osborne & The Rocky Top X-Press; Collin Raye

Saturday June 13
1st show
7:00: Jimmy Dickens (host); The Whites; Mandy Barnett
7:30: Charley Pride (host); Connie Smith; Jim Ed Brown; Mike Snider
8:00: Mel Tillis (host); Charlie Louvin; Pam Tillis; Opry Square Dancers
8:30: Bill Anderson (host); Jean Shepard; Tracy Byrd

2nd show
9:30: Jimmy Dickens (host); Connie Smith; Mandy Barnett
10:00: Charley Pride (host); Jeannie Seely; George Hamilton IV; Mike Snider
10:30: Mel Tillis (host); Jesse McReynolds & The Virginia Boys; Pam Tillis; Opry Square Dancers
11:00: Bill Anderson (host); Ray Pillow; Jean Shepard; Tracy Byrd

And, here is the posted line-up from 10 years ago, the weekend of June 11 & 12, 2004. It should be noted that on Saturday's 1st show, Terri Clark was inducted as the newest member of the Grand Ole Opry. She became the 3rd Canadian to become an Opry member, following in the footsteps of Hank Snow and Stu Phillips

Friday June 11
7:30: Mike Snider (host); Connie Smith; Dale Watson
8:00: Jim Ed Brown (host); Charlie Walker; Little General Cloggers; T. Graham Brown
8:30: Jimmy Dickens (host); Mel McDaniel; Pam Tillis
9:00: Bill Anderson (host); Jan Howard; Jack Greene; Mark Wills
9:30: Brad Paisley (host); Jean Shepard; Osborne Brothers

Saturday June 12
1st show
6:30: Jimmy Dickens (host); Jeannie Seely; Osborne Brothers
7:00: Marty Stuart (host); Terri Clark; Mel Tillis; Billy Dean
8:00: Mike Snider (host); Jean Shepard; Billy Walker; Connie Smith; Opry Square Dancers
8:30: Bill Anderson (host); George Hamilton IV; Jimmy C Newman; Pam Tillis

2nd show
9:30: Jimmy Dickens (host); Jim Ed Brown; Billy Dean
10:00: Pam Tillis (host); Jean Shepard; Mel Tillis
10:30: Marty Stuart (host); Hank Locklin; Connie Smith; Opry Square Dancers
11:00: Bill Anderson (host); George Hamilton IV; Jimmy C Newman; Terri Clark
11:30: Mike Snider (host); Billy Walker; Jack Greene; Julie Roberts

I think it is safe to say that these past line-up are a significant upgrade from what is scheduled for this weekend!!

Finally, it was on Saturday June 17, 1967 that Stu Phillips became a member of the Grand Ole Opry. This will mark Stu's 47th year as an Opry member and although he rarely appears on the show, he has been over the years, a very solid member of the Opry.

Stu was born on January 19, 1933 in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. He grew up in Calgary, Alberta, which is an area of country music and as a youngster he was able to listen to the Grand Ole Opry. At an early age, he formed his own band and was featured on various Canadian radio and television programs. In 1965, he moved to Nashville and signed with RCA Records. His recording career was not very successful as he had only 13 singles that made it on the charts, the best of which was "Juanita Jones", which went to #13 in 1967. He was much more successful in Canada, Asia, the Middle East and Africa, where he had several gold records.

In 1993, Stu was inducted into the Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame and during the July 4th weekend in 1998, he and his wife, Aldona, became American citizens, taking the oath on the stage of the Opry.

The are 2 interesting facts about Stu. The first is that he is a minister in the Episcopal Church, receiving his divinity degree from the University of the South, and secondly, he owns the Long Hollow Winery in Goodlettsville.

From the night of June 17, 1967, here is the running order from what would be the 2nd half of the show, on the night that Stu Phillips became a member of the Grand Ole Opry.

9:30: Kellogg's
Charlie Louvin (host): See the Big Man Cry
Willis Brothers: Somebody Knows My Dog
Bob Luman: Why Don't You Leave Me Alone
Fruit Jar Drinkers: Katy Hill
Charlie Louvin: How Great Thou Art
Bobby Lord: Life Can Have Meaning
Charlie Louvin: Off and On

10:00: Schick
Billy Grammer (host): Wabash Cannonball
Del Wood: Under the Double Eagle
Stringbean: The Big 'Un Got Away
Billy Grammer: Detroit City

10:15: Pure
Justin Tubb (host): You Nearly Lose Your Mind
Osborne Brothers: Roll, Muddy River
Cousin Jody: On Top of Old Smokey
Justin Tubb: As Long As There's A Sunday

10:30: Buckley's
The Browns (host): Where Does the Good Times Go
Stu Phillips: (?)
The Browns: All of Me Belongs to You

10:45: Newport
Roy Acuff (host): Wabash Cannonball
Wilma Lee & Stoney Cooper: The Birds Are Back to Sing
Crook Brothers: Black Mountain Rag
Roy Acuff: The Great Speckled Bird

11:00: Coca-Cola
Bob Luman (host): Let's Think About Living
Marion Worth: Your Good Girls Gonna Go Bad
Fruit Jar Drinkers: Fire on the Mountain
Duke of Paducah: Four Leaf Clover
Bob Luman: Memphis
Sam McGee: Amos Johnson Rag
Marion Worth: He Thinks I Still Care
Bob Luman: You Can Take the Boy From the Country

11:30: Lava
Marty Robbins (host): No Tears Milady
Ernie Ashworth: At Ease, Heart
Wilma Burgess: There Goes My Everything
Don Winters: Chime Bells
Marty Robbins: Tonight Carmen
Ernie Ashworth: Talk Back Trembling Lips
Marty Robbins: Don't Worry/Begging to You/Bouquet of Roses/I Could Never Be Ashamed of You/You Know How Talk Gets Around/Lovesick Blues/El Paso

Congratulations to Terri Clark for 10 years of Opry membership and Stu Phillips for 47 years.

Enjoy the Opry this weekend!!


  1. Looks like the Opry has added Chuck Wicks and Dean Miller on to Saturday night. I think Dean will be in the 7:00 segment, not sure where Chuck will end up. Either way, it still doesn't add up to a $65 show.

  2. Bryon,

    Do you know if they are filling the house on nights like these? To me it is misleading almost to the point of advertising fraud to promote what you see at the Opry then present this kind of show. They rightfully use the disclaimer that the performers and schedule are subject to change and we expect that and that is what makes the Opry, unknown but not unexpected variety each week.

    I have posted here long enough that my love for the Opry and the members should be well known. However, at this point I can’t justify time and expense to make a trip to Nashville with the primary purpose being to attend the Opry. That is sad and not fair to the faithful including the veterans who keep it going each week.

    There was a time when I could call a year in advance, get front row seats and know that I was going to see a good show with household names singing good and providing a wholesome family performance. Uninformed friends used to say “who are you going to the Opry to see” and I would say “No one in particular, it will be a variety of folks and we won’t know till we get there but it will be good”. There didn’t have to be a mega star on the show to ensure I was going to see a good show with good supporting cast more than worth my money

    It looks to me like they are trying to provide instant gratification. Instead of people saying “I hear that Grand Ole Opry show is a must see if you are a country music fan, maybe we should plan our next vacation around it”, now are they just looking for those who say “hey I see Carrie(insert your choice) is doing the Opry next Saturday, lets go”.

    I know I say this often and in no way do I mean to preach but this is in part due to our drastic change in society. Today’s world of social media, instant messaging and reality TV has changed what many think of as entertainment. Just look at the audience participation to the sponsors at the Opry. I’ve covered that one too. Management seems to be trying to cash in on this new lack of attention span and make what money they can before getting out of Dodge. As I have said before, I hope that is not true but sometimes you have to wonder.

    I’ll listen again this weekend like always to hear the faithful and the veterans who keep the show going and be thankful we can still tune into the Opry and remember that we are on borrowed time at this pace.

    I enjoy everyone’s comments here and thanks for letting me participate. This is starting to feel like a support group!

    Knightsville, IN

  3. Here is what we have now: Friday Night Opry, Jean Shepard is off, replaced by Larry Gatlin. Dean Miller added to the 2nd segment, final slot. Saturday's Grand Ole Opry, Jaida Dreyer added to the 1st segment with a spot still left empty for Jimmy Dickens. Chuck Wicks has been added to the 4th segment.

    Jim, to answer your question, the Opry is drawing very well even with the bad line-ups. They have really stepped up their marketing and working with the various conventions coming to town and continuing to work with the tour groups and school groups. And many of these groups are getting better seats then they did in the past.

  4. From Anonymous in PA: spot-on Jim; agree 100% with your comments; as I have said before, we are down to going 1x a year for the anniversary weekend, and really believe we will stop after 2015 (the 90th)

  5. Fred, Bismarck:

    I second Jim, also. Used to be, as he says, you could plan a vacation around the Opry with every confidence you were going to see a good show. When we attended in May 1969, I scarcely missed E.T., Hank Snow and Marty Robbins for all the fire power that was left ... and Johnny Cash and George Jones dropped in unannounced!

    If, as Byron says, the Opry continues to draw with these pathetic lineups -- which are barely worth tuning in on the Internet or radio -- I guess Fisher has successfully replaced us fans of the older show.