Saturday, November 29, 2014

December Opry Highlights

As the Grand Ole Opry prepares to close out another year, here are the important dates and historical events that have taken place involving the Opry, or it's members, during the month of December.

December 2, 1898: Herman Crook was born. Herman was an original charter member of the Opry and he performed on the Opry for the final time the week before he passed away in June 1988. Herman first performed on the WSM Barn Dance July 24, 1926 and when he passed away, the Crook Brothers were the only act left that represented the original tradition of the Opry. The band played for the cloggers and the square dancers. Roy Acuff said of Herman, "He loved country music, but he wanted it country. He didn't go for any of this rock' n' roll type stuff."

December 14, 1899: DeFord Bailey was born. DeFord first appeared on the WSM Barn Dance on June 19, 1926, and when George D. Hay changed the name of the show to the Grand Ole Opry, DeFord played the first song. He was fired from the Opry in 1941 in a move that left him very bitter. Despite repeated attempts by Roy Acuff, Minnie Pearl and Bill Monroe, DeFord stayed away from the Opry until February 23, 1974, when he returned for the Opry's first "Old-Timer's Night." DeFord passed away in 1982 and in 2005 he was elected to the Country Music Hall of Fame.

December 11, 1914: Former Opry member James Clell "Tex" Summey was born. You may not recognize that name, but you would know him by his stage name of Cousin Jody. He first came to the Opry with Roy Acuff in 1937 and later worked with Pee Wee King and Lonzo & Oscar. He also performed on the Opry as a solo act and was an Opry member until health issues forced him to retire. He passed away in 1975. On a historical note, he was the first person to play the dobro and the steel guitar on the Opry.

December 19, 1920: The Grand Ole Opry's oldest member, Jimmy Dickens was born on this date in Bolt, West Virginia. Jimmy will be 94 and despite some health issues, he continues to appear most Saturday nights on the Opry.

December 26, 1925: The WSM Barn Dance was formally listed on the WSM program schedule that was printed in the Nashville Tennessean, which wrote, "Because of this recent revival in the popularity of the old familiar tunes, WSM has arranged to have an hour or two every Saturday night, starting Saturday December 26. Uncle Dave Macon, the oldest banjo picker in Dixie, and who comes from Readyville, Tennessee, and Uncle Jimmy Thompson of Martha, Tennessee, will answer any requests for old-time melodies."

December 10, 1927: While there seems to be some confusion as to the exact date, it would appear that this was the date that the WSM Barn Dance became the Grand Ole Opry. The Barn Dance came on the air at 8:00. From 7-8, WSM broadcast a classical music show, via the NBC radio network called "Music Appreciation Hour." At the conclusion of the Music Hour on that particular night, George D. Hay announced, "For the past hour we have been listening to music taken largely from Grand Opera, from now on we will present The Grand Ole Opry." While this is the story as told by George D. Hay, there seems to be no independent verification of this event. Some historians actually think the date was December 8, 1928 as the "Music Appreciation Hour" did not start on WSM until that year. To back the claim of the December 1927 date, it was on December 11, 1927 that the Nashville Tennessean first used the words "Grand Ole Opry." Either way, the new name stuck.

December 13, 1930: Grand Ole Opry member Buck White was born. Along with his daughters Sharon and Cheryl, The Whites have been Opry members since 1984 and Buck is still doing a great job playing the piano at the age of 84.

December 7, 1931: Opry member Bobby Osborne was born in Leslie County, Kentucky. Along with his brother Sonny, Bobby became an Opry member in 1964. At the age of 83, Bobby still brings bluegrass and "Rocky Top" most every week to the Opry.

December 30, 1944: Bob Wills makes an appearance on the Grand Ole Opry, appearing on the Prince Albert portion of the show that was broadcast on the NBC radio network. There are a couple of stories from that night. First, Minnie Pearl remembered that a lady was so excited that she fell out of the balcony onto the stage. But also Minnie also said, "That was the first time we ever put electrified fiddles on the Opry. Roy Acuff said it would ruin the Opry forever!." While it might have been the first night for electric fiddles, both Pee Wee King and his Golden West Cowboys and Ernest Tubb had been using electric instruments on the Opry before Bob Wills made his appearance. Another story from that night is that Bob Wills brought a set of drums and was told to hide them behind a curtain. However, Harold "Sticks" McDonald, a member of the Golden West Cowboys, had actually brought drums to the Opry earlier. He used them for a couple of weeks until George D. Hay told Pee Wee to take the drums home and to leave them there. However, within a few years, many acts were using a snare drum.

December 8, 1945: Earl Scruggs made his Opry debut as part of Bill Monroe's Blue Grass Boys. He was the final member to join was is considered the greatest of Bill's many groups. That group included Lester Flatt, Chubby Wise and Howard Watts and they are credited with creating the great bluegrass sound that Bill would become famous for. They only stayed together until 1948. Earl and Lester would eventually join the Opry as a duo, and after they broke up, Earl continued for a short period of time as an Opry member. Even after giving up his membership, Earl would still appear from time to time at the Opry.

December 12, 1959: While he was performing on the Opry, Bill Monroe was served with divorce papers from his wife, Carolyn Brown. She charged that Bill was having an affair with his bass player, Bessie Lee Mauldin.

December 24, 1960: The final Prince Albert Grand Ole Opry show is broadcast on the NBC radio network. Television and the decline of radio led to the death of the show. That final show was hosted by Hank Snow.

December 3, 1961: "Doctor" Lew Childre passed away. Lew, who was born in 1901, became an Opry member in 1945 and continued as a member through most of the 1950s. He often worked with Stringbean.

December 6, 1964: The Grand Ole Opry fired 12 of its members for not making the required number of appearances on the Opry. From the Nashville Tennessean, "Twelve top country and western stars will not appear on the Grand Ole Opry in 1965, and have been prohibited from using the Opry name in their outside billings, it was learned yesterday. Another entertainer, long-time favorite Minnie Pearl, has been given a leave of absence from the show for the coming year, but will continue to use the Opry billing in her present contracts," a WSM spokeman said. Those who were dismissed from the Opry were George Morgan, Don Gibson, Billy Grammer, Johnny Wright, Kitty Wells, the Jordanaires, Faron Young, Ferlin Husky, Chet Atkins, Justin Tubb, Stonewall Jackson and Ray Price. At the time, Opry members were required to appear on 26 shows each year. It was later found out that Chet Atkins was not an actual Opry member, which led to some comments concerning if Opry management really knew what was going on at the show. Kitty Wells and Johnny Wright would later say that they quit and were not fired. Faron Young would say that it was a money issue. Many of those who were fired would later return to the show as members, including George Morgan, Don Gibson, Billy Grammer, Justin Tubb and Stonewall Jackson, along with Minnie Pearl. Most of those who did not rejoin would come back and make guest appearances. On Tuesday December 8, the Tennessean in an editorial wrote, "The Opry has been, and contines to be, the nucleus of Nashville's $40 million music industry. There is hardly a successful music enterprise in the city that does not owe its orgin and its longevity to the Opry. Thus, it seems that the Opry management has a responsibility to compel observance of reasonable restrictions for its own protection and for the protection of the rest of the music industry in Nashville. Most of the thousands of people who line up at the Opry House every Friday and Saturday night have traveled long distances to see in person the stars that they come to love by radio. It must be a disappointment for these fans to arrive at the Opry an this one big night for them and find that their favorite stars have found a more profitable audience in some other state." The Tennessean put it better than I could and they were right in their comments. Of course times have changed and the Opry does not have the importance and influence in Nashville that it once had. But could you imagine what the reaction would be today if the Opry fired a dozen or so acts for not appearing on the show? I think most of us could come up with a list of 12 pretty quickly.

December 23, 1967: Jack Greene became a member of the Grand Ole Opry. Jack remained an Opry member until his death in 2013. Jack started as a member of Ernest Tubb's band before going on to a successful solo career.

December 14, 1973: Lorrie Morgan, age 14, made her first appearance on the Opry. She was brought on stage by her father, George Morgan, and sang "Paper Roses." A decade later, Lorrie would become an Opry member.

December 15, 1973: Skeeter Davis was suspended by the Grand Ole Opry for comments that she had made the previous Saturday night while performing on the Opry. As Skeeter said, "Hank Williams got kicked off the Opry for drinkin' too much old wine. Me? I got kicked off for singing about the new wine." What actually happened was that Skeeter was on her way to the Ryman for an Opry appearance when she witnessed the arrest of what were known as "Jesus Freaks," which was another name for the young people who were protesting not only in Nashville, but around the country. The arrests enraged Skeeter and on the Opry she expressed her rage by talking about it, singing about it, and weeping about it. When she came off the stage, she faced an angry Opry manager. She was told that she was no longer considered an Opry member, Happily for all, and for Skeeter, she was invited back to the Opry, 18 months later.

December 29, 1973: Tex Ritter made his final Grand Ole Opry appearance. This member of the Opry, who joined in 1965, and of the Country Music Hall of Fame would pass away several days later, on January 2, 1974.

December 25, 1976: Larry Gatlin, along with his brothers Steve and Rudy, became members of the Opry. This will be their 38th year as Opry members. While making few Opry appearances during their hit making careers, the Gatlin's, and Larry in particular, have really increased their Opry appearances over the past several years.

December 27, 1978: Grand Ole Opry member Bob Luman passed away at the age of 41. He joined the Opry in 1965 and was known for his rockabilly sound. When he joined the Opry, several of the Opry's members, which included Roy Acuff, felt that Bob's music had a little too much rock in it for the Opry, but Bob proved to be a very popular member of the cast. His last Grand Ole Opry appearance was on December 2, 1978, while his last Friday Night Opry appearance was December 15.

December 8, 1982: Marty Robbins died in a Nashville hospital at the age of 57. Probably the Opry's most popular member in it's history, he was famous for hosting the 11:30 segment and making it his own. The previous October, Marty had been elected to the Country Music Hall of Fame.

December 20, 1986: Randy Travis joined the cast of the Grand Ole Opry. This will be his 28th year as an Opry member. Randy is a fine country music singer with many hits and I am sure it will be just a matter of time until he is elected to the Hall of Fame. Sadly, Randy suffered a heart attack and stroke last year and has been unable to perform since. He continues his recover in Texas.

December 17, 1993: Herman Harper, the famous and very popular bass singer for the Carol Lee Singers, passed away. Herman had been a member of the Oak Ridge Boys, back in the days when they were considered a gospel quartet.

December 24, 1994: Grand Ole Opry member Vic Willis performed on the Opry for the final time. The Willis Brothers originally came to the Opry in 1946 and were known as the Oklahoma Wranglers. They left in 1949 to tour with Eddy Arnold. After they finished working with Eddy, they returned to the Opry in 1957 under the name Willis Brothers. In addition to Vic, the group included his brothers Guy and Skeeter. Skeeter passed away in 1976 and Guy stayed until 1979 when ill health forced his retirement. Guy continued on, under the name Vic Willis Trio until his death from an automobile accident in 1995.

December 30, 1994: Grand Ole Gospel Time, which followed the Friday Night Opry and was hosted by Hank Snow's son, Jimmie Snow, was broadcast for the final time. The show, which was taped and broadcast on WSM Sunday mornings, was on the air for 23 years.

December 19, 1999: Former Grand Ole Opry member Marion Worth passed away at the age of 69. Marion had joined the Opry in 1963 and while not a superstar, she was a very entertaining and crowd favorite on the Opry. Her final Opry show was in March 1980, when she left the cast and went into semi-retirement.

December 20, 1999: The legendary Hank Snow passed away at his Rainbow Ranch in Madison, Tennessee. He was just 2 weeks shy of celebrating 50 years as an Opry member. Hank had last appeared at the Opry in September 1996 and had been in declining health since. In the history of the Opry and country music, Hank is one of the all time greats.

December 16, 2000: Brad Paisley was surprised while performing at the Opry by Jimmy Dickens and Jeannie Seely, dressed as Santa and Mrs. Claus, with an invitation to became a member of the Opry. Brad accepted the invitation and would be inducted as a member in February 2001.

December 14, 2002: Toby Keith makes his first appearance at the Opry. Also appearing at the Opry that night were Keith Urban and Trace Adkins.

December 31, 2002: Jim McReynolds, who performed with his brother Jesse as Jim & Jesse, passed away in Gallatin, Tennessee after a long illness. Jim & Jesse had joined the Opry in March 1964 and along with their Virginia Boys, were very popular in bluegrass circles. After Jim passed away, Jesse continued as an Opry member and this year he celebrated 50 years as an Opry member.

December 13, 2013: Joe Diffie is honored for 20 years as a member of the Opry. Joining Joe that evening was Opry member Carrie Underwood, along with Brad Paisley.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

November 28, 1925 & Happy Birthday Glen Thompson

As we prepare to celebrate the Thanksgiving holiday, and blessings to all, there are 2 very important dates that I want to mention.

While the Grand Ole Opry has it's annual birthday bash in October of each year, it was actually on Saturday November 28, 1925 that the Grand Ole Opry started. In the words of George D. Hay, the founder of the Grand Ole Opry:

"The Grand Ole Opry is a very simple program and it started in a very simple way. WSM discovered something very fundamental when it tapped the vein of American folk music, which lay smoldering in small flames for about three hundred years. Realizing the wealth of folk music material and performers in the Tennessee Hills, I welcomed the appearance of Uncle Jimmy Thompson, who went on the air at eight o'clock Saturday night, November 28, 1925. Uncle Jimmy told us that he had a thousand tunes. He was given a comfortable chair in front of an old caron microphone, while his niece, Miss Eva Thompson, played piano accompaniment. Uncle Jimmy was about eighty years of age. He told us that he had recently come out with a blue ribbon in a big fiddler's contest and shindig in Dallas, which had lasted about a week. WSM's studio was rather small and beautifully decorated in a quiet way with red drapes, suggesting a very dignified type of music. Uncle Jimmy was somewhat amazed but by no means rattled or thrown for a loss. He was the extrovert type and nothing about the radio seemed to bother him, not even the fact that it was a new proposition. After he had played for about an hour, we suggested very softly on account of the microphone that perhaps he had played enough. His reply came back not so softly: 'Why shucks, a man don't get warmed up in an hour.'"

From there the Opry took off as Uncle Jimmy was followed in the early days of the WSM Barn Dance by DeFord Bailey, Henry Bandy, The Binkley Brothers and Their Dixie Clodhoppers, The Crook Brothers, Kitty Cora Cline, The Fruit Jar Drinkers, The Gully Jumpers, Theron Hale and his Daughters, Fiddlin' Sid Harkreader, Uncle Dave Macon, Uncle Joe Mangrum and Fred Shriver, The Pickard Family, W. Ed Poplin and his Barn Dance Orchestra, Dr. Humphrey Bate and his Possum Hunters, Arthur Smith and Mazy Todd, all of whom were part of the WSM Barn Dance/Grand Ole Opry in the 1920s. A very impressive group.

It is also fitting that November 28 is also the birthday of the Founder and President of the Grand Ole Opry Fan Club, and my good friend, Glen Thompson. While not as old as the Opry, Glen has done much over the years to promote the Opry and to help remember it's history. While I can't say for sure what year the Opry Fan Club started, I believe that it started in the mid 1980s. I know I still have my original membership card, and for those of us who were members, we all looked forward to "The Opry Observer" that came out several times each year, along with the annual button and other items that would come each year of your renewal, items such as scarfs and key chains.

Over the past decade, the Fan Club has somewhat disappeared, but Glen is still at work promoting good, classic country music. Each month, he hosts "Country 101" at his home and each program offers a look back at classic and true country music with the legends. Among the artists that Glen has featured, the list includes Bill Anderson, Jim Ed Brown, George Hamilton IV, The Whites, Riders In The Sky, Kayton Roberts, Tennessee Mafia Jug Band, Rhonda Vincent and Jesse McReynolds. There are so many more I can't name them all.
I can honestly say that Roy Acufff is Glen's all-time favorite country music artist and Grand Ole Opry star. And don't get into any type of argument with Glen over this as he will defend Roy to his death.

Each time I visit Nashville, I look forward to my visit with Glen. I just wish I could spend more time with him as it is always a great visit as we talk not only about days gone by at the Opry, but also our mutual enjoyment of baseball.

Knowing Glen, he probably is embarrassed as I am writing all of this. But I just wanted everyone to know what a great man Glen is and how much the Opry means to him and how much we have to thank him for. Hopefully, the Grand Ole Opry Fan Club, or Circle Club as it was called more recently will get going again and I hope when it does, Glen continues as the President.

Happy Anniversary to the Grand Ole Opry and Happy Birthday to Glen Thompson!!

Grand Ole Opry 11/28 & 11/29

With the Thanksgiving holiday upon us, the Grand Ole Opry has gotten a quick start on a short week and has already posted the line-ups for the shows this weekend. There is the Friday Night Opry and the 2 Grand Ole Opry shows on Saturday night.

The Friday Night Opry will include guest artists Guy Penrod, who will also be signing after the show, The Black Lillies, Aaron Tippin,along with Jimmy Wayne and Elizabeth Cook, both of whom will also be performing on Saturday night. Joining Jimmy and Elizabeth on Saturday night will be very frequent Opry guests The Willis Clan, along with the Rhett Walker Band.

As far as Opry members this weekend, Lorrie Morgan will be hosting a segment on each show Saturday night. John Conlee is set for both weekend nights, as is Jeannie Seely, if she can make it back from her tour in Ireland.

The interesting name on this week's Opry schedule is the "80's Lady" K.T. Oslin. I am sure all of you remember the string of hits that she had in the late 1980s and early 1990s. Her "80's Ladies" album won several Grammy Awards for best female country performance and for song of the year. She followed that up with "Hold Me" which also won the same two Grammy Awards. In 1988 she was the CMA Female Vocalist of the Year.

In 1995 she had heart bypass surgery and within a year after that she basically left the business. In November 2013, she returned to do a show at the Franklin Theater to mark the 25th anniversary of her "80's Ladies" album. Her career was short, but impactful.

Friday November 28
7:00: John Conlee (host); Love and Theft; Elizabeth Cook
7:30: Mike Snider (host); Jackie Lee; Aaron Tippin
8:15: Riders In The Sky (host); Jesse McReynolds; Jimmy Wayne
8:45: Jeannie Seely (host); Guy Penrod; The Black Lillies

Saturday November 29
1st show
7:00: Jeannie Seely (host); Elizabeth Cook; (Jimmy Dickens?)
7:30: The Whites (host); Mike Snider; Jimmy Wayne
8:00: John Conlee (host); Jean Shepard; Rhett Walker Band; Opry Square Dancers
8:30: Lorrie Morgan (host); K.T. Oslin; The Willis Clan

2nd show
9:30: Jeannie Seely (host); Elizabeth Cook; Mike Snider
10:00: Lorrie Morgan (host); Bobby Osborne & The Rocky Top X-Press; Jimmy Wayne
10:30: The Whites (host); Jan Howard; Rhett Walker Band; Opry Square Dancers
11:00: John Conlee (host); K.T. Oslin; The Willis Clan

Nice to see a little variety between the 2 shows.

And now, here is the posted Grand Ole Opry line-up from 5 years ago this weekend, November 27 & 28, 2009:

Friday November 27
7:00: Jeannie Seely (host); Jim Ed Brown; Rhonda Vincent
7:30: Lorrie Morgan (host); Bobby Osborne & The Rocky Top X-Press; Jack Greene
8:00: Riders In The Sky (host); Jan Howard; Jimmy C Newman; Matt Kennon
8:30: Mike Snider (host); Connie Smith; Doyle Dykes

Saturday November 28
1st show
7:00: Jimmy C Newman (host); Jimmy Wayne
7:30: Mike Snider (host); Jim Ed Brown; The Whites; Charlie Louvin
8:00: Lorrie Morgan (host); Riders In The Sky; Cherryholmes; Opry Square Dancers
8:30: Bill Anderson (host); Connie Smith; Brad Paisley

2nd show
9:30: Lorrie Morgan (host); Brad Paisley; Jim Ed Brown
10:00: Mike Snider (host); Charlie Louvin; Jimmy Wayne
10:30: Jeannie Seely (host); Jesse McReynolds; The Whites; Opry Square Dancers
11:00: Bill Anderson (host); Riders In The Sky; Cherryholmes

Now from 10 years ago this weekend, November 26 & 27, 2004:

Friday November 26
7:30: Porter Wagoner (host); Jim Ed Brown; Catherine Britt
8:00: Jeannie Seely (host); Charlie Walker; Billy Walker; Kenny & Amanda Smith Band
8:30: Jimmy Dickens (host); Jack Greene; Sherrie Austin
9:00: Riders In The Sky (host); Jean Shepard; BR549
9:30: John Conlee (host); Jesse McReynolds & The Virginia Boys; T. Graham Brown

Saturday November 27
1st show
6:30: Jimmy Dickens (host); The Whites; Hilljack
7:00: Jeannie Seely (host); Jimmy C Newman; Jack Greene; Mindy Smith
7:30: Jean Shepard (host); Osborne Brothers; Jamie O'Neal
8:00: Porter Wagoner (host); Connie Smith; Mountain Heart; Opry Square Dancers
8:30: Jim Ed Brown (host); Mel McDaniel; Marty Stuart

2nd show
9:30: Jimmy Dickens (host); The Whites; Hilljack
10:00: Porter Wagoner (host); Jan Howard; Billy Walker; Mindy Smith
10:30: Jimmy C Newman (host); Charlie Louvin; Marty Stuart; Opry Square Dancers
11:00: Jean Shepard (host); Osborne Brothers; Connie Smith; Jamie O'Neal
11:30: Jim Ed Brown (host); Mel McDaniel; Mountain Heart

For this week's look back into Grand Ole Opry history, it was 50 years ago this Saturday night, November 28, 1964 that Willie Nelson made his Grand Ole Opry debut.

Willie came to Nashville in 1960 and while he had made plenty of records, it was the songwriting of Willie that people were talking about. Already at the point in his career, "Hello Walls", "Crazy", "Night Life," and "Funny How Time Slips Away" had been hits by others.

As far as the Opry, Willie said, "November 28, 1964 was when I made my first appearance on the Grand Ole Opry for which I was paid thirty-five dollars. And I cohosted a televisioin show with my old hero, Ernest Tubb. The whole enterprise was supported by my songwriting royalties. But I love the Opry. The family tradition is very similar to the family tradition I grew up with. It's very important to keep family units together, and that's the kind of life that the Opry was trying to set an example for. The show represents the people to themselves."

Willie's time as an Opry member was short. He realized that the Opry and Nashville were just not for him and within a few years of joining the Opry, he left. There were no hard feelings. The pay was low and the audience was not quite sure what to make of him. Even after Willie left, he would still come back to the Opry. Not often, but he did remember where the Opry House was.

Here is the line-up and running order of the show from November 28, 1964, the night Willie Nelson came to the Opry.

7:30: Luzianne
Roy Drusky (host): (?)
Wilma Lee & Stoney Cooper: (?)
Curly Fox: (?)
The Browns: Little Drummer Boy
Roy Drusky: (?)
Stringbean: Run, Little Rabbit, Run
Ernest Ashworth: Pushed in A Corner
Wilma Lee & Stoney Cooper: (?)
Roy Drusky: (?)

8:00: Martha White
Flatt & Scruggs (host): (?)
Bobby Lord: When I've Learned
Billy Walker: Cross the Brazos at Waco
Crook Brothers: (?)
Flatt & Scruggs: (?)
Bobby Lord: Take the Bucket to the Well
Del Wood: (?)
Billy Walker: Circumstances
Flatt & Scruggs: (?)

8:30: Stephens
Porter Wagoner (host): I'll Go Down Swinging
Glaser Brothers: A Girl Like You
Willie Nelson: I Never Cared for You
Archie Campbell: Comedy
Porter Wagoner: Life of the Party
Lonzo & Oscar: (?)
Norma Jean: (?)
Glaser Brothers: Where No One Stands Alone

Porter Wagoner: Sorrow on the Rocks

9:00: Pet Milk
Roy Acuff (host): Pins and Needles
Wilburn Brothers: (?)
Fruit Jar Drinkers: Katy Hill
Oswald: The Girl I Love Don't Pay Me No Mind
Roy Acuff: Just Friends
June Stearns: (?)
Wilburn Brothers: (?)
Howdy Forrester & Jimmy Riddle: (?)
Roy Acuff: Life's Railway to Heaven

9:30: Kellogg's
Jimmy Newman (host): (?)
Bill Monroe: Gotta Travel On

George Hamilton IV: (?)
Willis Brothers: Give Me 40 Acres
Jimmy Newman: (?)
Cousin Jody: The Peanut Song
Bill Monroe: Memories of You
George Hamilton IV: (?)
Jimmy Newman: (?)

10:00: Schick
Wilma Lee & Stoney Cooper (host): (?)
Curly Fox: (?)

Ernest Ashworth: Heartbreak Avenue
Wilma Lee & Stoney Cooper: (?)

10:15: SSS Tonic
Porter Wagoner (host): Howdy Neighbor Howdy
The Browns: Everybody's Darling But Mine
Stringbean: Battle of New Orleans
Del Wood: (?)
Porter Wagoner: Misery Loves Company

10:30: Harvey's
Flatt & Scruggs (host): (?)
Roy Drusky: (?)

Billy Walker: Down to My Last Cigarette
Flatt & Scruggs: (?)
Earl Scruggs: (?)

10:45: Newport
Jimmy Newman (host): (?)
Carter Family: (?)
George Hamilton IV: If You Don't Know, I Ain't Gonna Tell You
Crook Brothers: (?)
Jimmy Newman: (?)

11:00: Coca Cola
Roy Acuff (host): Wabash Cannonball
Wilburn Brothers: (?)
Willie Nelson: Touch Me
Glaser Brothers: Satisfied
Roy Acuff: One More
Lonzo & Oscar: (?)
Fruit Jar Drinkers: Bile Them Cabbage Down
Sam & Kirk McGee: (?)
Roy Acuff: I'll Fly Away

11:30: Lava
Marty Robbins (host): (?)
Bill Monroe: Come Go With Me
Bobby Lord: Life Can Have Meaning
Willis Brothers: Gonna Buy Me A Jukebox
Marty Robbins: (?)
Cousin Jody: Talk A Little Louder
Bill Monore: Shenendoah Breakdown
Marty Robbins: (?)

The 2nd featured line-up for this week is from Saturday November 28, 1992, which was the night 22 years ago that Marty Stuart joined the Grand Ole Opry. Marty joined the Opry the week after the death of Opry legend Roy Acuff. And yes, we all remember the famous comments that Marty made on the night of his induction.

1st show
6:30: GHS Strings
Boxcar Willie (host): There's Nothing Like A Good Old Country Song
Mike Snider: (?)/The Fur Coat
Boxcar Willie: The Great Speckled Bird

6:45: Hall of Fame
Grandpa Jones (host): Nashville on My Mind
Jim Ed Brown: The Doll Maker
Bill Carlisle: Elvira
Grandpa Jones: My Little Old Home in New Orleans

7:00: Shoney's
Del Reeves (host): Two Dollars in the Jukebox/A Dime at A Time/Looking at the World Through The Windshield
Charlie Louvin: The Family Who Prays
Jeanne Pruett: Satin Sheets
The Whites: Pins and Needles
Skeeter Davis: The End of the World

7:30: Standard Candy
Jimmy Dickens (host): Wabash Cannonball
Jeannie Seely: As Long As I Live/My Tears Don't Show
Ray Pillow: I Wonder Where You Are Tonight
Marty Stuart: Tempted/The Long Black Veil
Jimmy Dickens: I Saw the Light

8:00: Martha White
Bill Anderson (host): Wild Weekend
Connie Smith: How Great Thou Art
Oswald: I'll Be All Smiles Tonight
Jimmy C Newman: La Cajun Band
Opry Square Dance Band/Melvin Sloan Dancers: Liberty
Bill Anderson: I Love You Drops

8:30: Kraft
Hank Snow (host): Forever and One; Forever and Two
Jean Shepard: Let's All Go Down to the River/I Saw the Light/Will the Circle Be Unbroken/I'll Fly Away/Somebody Touched Me
Roy Drusky: Too Old to Die Young
4 Guys: I'm Bound for Higher Ground
Stonewall Jackson: Ol' Chuck of Coal
Hank Snow: I've Cried A Mile

2nd show
9:30: Jimmy Dickens (host): Sleepin' at the Foot of the Bed
Wilma Lee Cooper: He Will Set Your Fields on Fire
Jan Howard: Lord, I Hope This Day is Good
Marty Stuart: This One's Gonna Hurt You A Long, Long Time/I'll Take the Blame/Hillbilly Rock
Jimmy Dickens: My Eyes Are Jealous

10:00: Little Debbie
Grandpa Jones (host): What'll I Do With the Baby
Del Reeves: Don't You Ever Get Tired of Hurting Me
Grandpa Jones: Gone Home

10:15: Tennessee Pride/Sunbeam
Boxcar Willie (host): There's Nothing Like A Good Old Country Song
Billy Walker: Peace in the Valley
Boxcar Willie: Wabash Cannonball

10:30: Randy Travis Enterprises
Bill Anderson (host): Southern Fried
The Whites: San Antonio Rose
Bill Anderson: City Lights

10:45: B.C. Powder
4 Guys (host): How Married Are You Mary Ann
Charlie Louvin & Monroe Fields: I Love You Best of All
Opry Square Dance Band/Melvin Sloan Dancers: Snow Flake Reel
4 Guys: Farther Along

11:00: Coca-Cola
Hank Snow (host): There's A Fool Such As I
Jean Shepard: Bouquet of Roses
Charlie Walker: A Way to Free Myself
Justin Tubb: Waltz Across Texas
Mike Snider: Soldier's Joy/Angeline the Baker/Old Molly Hare
Hank Snow: These Things Shall Pass

11:30: Creamettes
Jimmy C Newman (host): Cajun's Dream
Connie Smith: The Deepening Snow
Roy Drusky: As Long As I Live
Johnny Russell: In A Mansion Stands My Love/He'll Have to Go
Jimmy C Newman: Colinda

Happy Thansgiving to everyone and I hope each of you gets the chance to spend some time with your family or friends.

And I hope everyone enjoys the Opry this weekend!!

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Grand Ole Opry 11/21 & 11/22

The Grand Ole Opry has posted the line-ups for the 3 shows this weekend as the Opry continues the winter run at the Ryman Auditorium.

The Friday Night Opry will feature Opry members Ricky Skaggs and Marty Stuart. For Ricky, who is also scheduled for Saturday night, this will be 2 weekends in a row at the Opry. For Marty, November 28 will mark his 22nd year as an Opry member, as he joined the cast on that date in 1992. 2 other Opry veterans, and Hall of Fame members, Bill Anderson and Charley Pride are also scheduled for both nights.

Joining Ricky, Marty, Bill and Charley on the schedule for Friday night is Jean Shepard, who missed last weekend. Friday night will mark Jean's 59th year as an Opry member, and I should add that it is 59 consecutive years as Jean has never left the Opry cast. It is also Jean's 81st birthday and her wedding anniversary.

Guest artists this weekend include The Quebe Sisters, who are set for both nights, while on Friday they will be joined by Lori McKenna and Easton Corbin. Joing those already mentioned on Saturday's Grand Ole Opry will be guest artists Mandy Barnett, JT Hodges and Nashville star Charles Esten

Friday November 21
7:00: Riders In The Sky (host); Mike Snider; Lori McKenna
7:30: Ricky Skaggs (host); The Whites; The Quebe Sisters
8:15: Bill Anderson (host); Jean Shepard; Easton Corbin
8:45: Marty Stuart (host); Bobby Osborne & The Rocky Top X-Press; Charley Pride

Saturday November 22
1st show
7:00: Riders In The Sky (host); JT Hodges
7:30: Mike Snider (host); John King; Charley Pride
8:00: Ricky Skaggs (host); The Whites; Opry Square Dancers
8:30: Bill Anderson (host); Mandy Barnett; Charles Esten

2nd show
9:30: Riders In The Sky (host); JT Hodges
10:00: Mike Snider (host); John King; Charley Pride
10:30: Ricky Skaggs (host); The Whites; Opry Square Dancers
11:00: Bill Anderson (host); Mandy Barnett; Charles Esten

And no, that is not a typo. The line-up is the same for both shows on Saturday night. Looks like they are saving the usual spot for Jimmy Dickens, and there might be a spot to fill in the Ricky Skaggs hosted segments.

And now, here is the posted Grand Ole Opry line-up from 5 years ago this weekend, November 20 & 21, 2009:

Friday November 20
7:00: George Hamilton IV (host); Jesse McReynolds; Jason Michael Carroll
7:30: Jimmy Dickens (host); Bobby Osborne & The Rocky Top X-Press; Shane Yellowbird
8:00: Mike Snider (host); Stonewall Jackson; The Whites; Connie Smith
8:30: Vince Gill (host); Ralph Stanley; Little Big Town

Saturday November 21
1st show
7:00: Jimmy Dickens (host); Jimmy C Newman; Holly Williams
7:30: The Whites (host); Jack Greene; Ralph Stanley
8:00: George Hamilton IV (host); Jan Howard; The Lovell Sisters; Opry Square Dancers
8:30: Mike Snider (host); Connie Smith; Charlie Daniels Band

2nd show
9:30: Jimmy Dickens (host); Jimmy C Newman; Holly Williams
10:00: The Whites (host); Jack Greene; Ralph Stanley
10:30: Mike Snider (host); Ray Pillow; Charlie Daniels Band; Opry Square Dancers
11:00: Vince Gill (host); Connie Smith; The Lovell Sisters

Now from 10 years ago this weekend, November 19 & 20, 2004:

Friday November 19
7:30: Jeannie Seely (host); Mel McDaniel; Christy Sutherland
8:00: Steve Wariner (host); Stonewall Jackson; Jesse McReynolds & The Virginia Boys; Janie Fricke
8:30: Jim Ed Brown (host); Jimmy C Newman; Catherine Britt
9:00: Bill Anderson (host); Brad Cotter; Jerry & Tammy Sullivan
9:30: John Conlee (host); Osborne Brothers; Mandy Barnett

Saturday November 20
1st show
6:30: Steve Wariner (host); Jimmy C Newman; Lane Turner
7:00: Brad Paisley (host); Restless Heart; Catherine Britt; Buddy Miller w/Emmylou Harris; Alison Krauss
8:00: Jeannie Seely (host); Jack Greene; Rodney Atkins; Opry Square Dancers
8:30: Jim Ed Brown (host); Jesse McReynolds & The Virginia Boys; Janie Fricke

2nd show
9:30: Steve Wariner (host); Jesse McReynolds & The Virginia Boys; Lane Turner
10:00: Brad Paisley (host); Catherine Britt; Buddy Miller w/Emmylou Harris
10:30: Jimmy C Newman (host); Stu Phillips; Rodney Atkins; Opry Square Dancers
11:00: Jeannie Seely (host); Jack Greene; Restless Heart
11:30: Jim Ed Brown (host); Ray Pillow; Janie Fricke

While November 21, 1955 is the date that Jean Shepard joined the Opry, that date was actually on a Monday. In those days, artists signed their contracts to become Opry members in the WSM offices, and whatever day of the week it happened, that was considered the date that they joined. In Jean's case, her first appearance as an Opry member took place the next Saturday night, November 26, 1955. Here is the Opry line-up and song listing from that night.

7:30: Federal Fertilizer Co.
Marty Robbins (host): Maybelline
Fiddle Tune: Old Joe Clark
Minnie Pearl: Comedy
Don and Rita: Lonely Heart
Fiddle Tune: Grey Eagle

7:45: American Ace
George Morgan (host): Every So Often
Goldie Hill: Ain't Gonna Wash My Face
Eddie Hill: Smack Dab In The Middle
George Morgan: Jesus, Saviour Pilot Me
Fiddle Tune: Devil's Dream

8:00: Martha White
Flatt and Scruggs: Theme Song
Jim Reeves: (host): Looking For A Sucker
Hawkshaw Hawkins: Standing at the End of the World
Flatt and Scruggs: Flint Hill Special
Jean Shepard: Satisfied Mind
Moon Mullican: Mean Mama
Possum Hunters: Bile Them Cabbage Down
Jim Reeves: I've Lived A Lot in my Lifetime
Maybelle Carter: Wildwood Flower
Flatt and Scruggs: Bubbling In My Soul
Hawkshaw Hawkins: Car-Hoppin' Mama
Fiddle Tune: Blackeyed Susan

8:30: Prince Albert
Ferlin Huskey (host): I'll Baby Sit With You
Rod Brasfield: Comedy
Louvin Brothers: I Don't Believe You've Met My Baby
Fiddle Tune: Soldier's Joy
Ferlin Huskey: Sayeth The Lord
Del Wood: Smoky Mountain Polka
Minnie Pearl: Comedy
Louvin Brothers: In The Middle of Nowhere
Chet Atkins: Avalon
Ferlin Huskey: Walking and Humming
Fiddle Tune: Katy Hill

9:00: Royal Crown Cola
Hank Snow (host): Music Making Mama
Fruit Jar Drinkers: Tennessee Wagoner
Lonzo and Oscar: The Cow Jumped the Moon
Bill Monroe: I Used To Be
Carlisles: Knot-Hole
Marty Robbins: Pretty Mama
Hank Snow: I Can See The Love in Your Heart
Lonzo and Oscar: Snow Deer
Carlisles: Lil Liza Jane
Fiddle Tune: Back Up and Push

9:30: Jefferson Island Salt
Jordanaires: Theme Song
Ray Price (host): I Don't Want You On My Conscience
Slim Whitman: Tell Me
Anita Carter: Mask On My Heart
Cousin Jody: Dear John
Crook Brothers: Girl I Left Behind
Louvin Brothers: Just Rehearsing
Grandpa Jones: Night Train to Memphis
Chet Atkins: Five Foot Two
Jordanaires: Shaking Bridges
Ray Price: Sweet Little Miss Blue Eyes

10:00: Wall-Rite
George Morgan (host): Almost
Bill Monroe: Close By
Moon Mullican: Cherokee Boogie
George Morgan: The Best Mistake I Ever Made
Fiddle Tune: Buffalo Gal

10:15: Dr. Le Gear
Marty Robbins (host): That's Alright
Carlisles: I Was On My Way to The Show
Goldie Hill: Why Don't You Leave Me Alone
Marty Robbins: Don't Let Me Hang Around
Fiddle Tune: Devil's Dream

10:30: Hester Battery
Jim Reeves (host): Looking For A Sucker
R.D. Heardon: To Be Announced
Jean Shepard: Beautiful Lies
Jim Reeves: I'm Hurting Inside
Fiddle Tune: Mississippi Sawyer

10:45: D Con
Hank Snow (host): Just Keep on Moving
Jimmy Snow: Go Back You Fool
Gully Jumpers: Bully of the Town
Hank Snow: Within This Broken Heart
Fiddle Tune: Bill Cheatham

11:00: W.E. Stephens
Lonzo and Oscar: Theme
Ferlin Huskey (host): I Feel Better All Over
Hawkshaw Hawkins: The Love You Steal
Rod Brasfield: Comedy
Lonzo and Oscar: Who Put That Brick Wall In My Way
Slim Whitman: Indian Love Call
Grandpa Jones: Call Old Rattler
Maybelle Carter: Gold Watch and Chain
Crook Brothers: Arkansas Traveler
Ferlin Huskey: Cuz You're So Sweet
Fiddle Tune: Old Joe Clark

11:30: Delited
Ray Price (host): Sweet Little Miss Blue Eyes
Louvin Brothers: When I Stop Dreaming
Eddie Hill: Someday You'll Call My Name
Sam and Kirk: While I'm Away
Cousin Jody: Oh, Wonderful World
Ray Price: Release Me
Dot and Smokey: Contact
Fruit Jar Drinkers: Walking In My Sleep
Louvin Brothers: Just Rehearsing
Ray Price: I'll Be There
Fiddle Tune: Sleepy Lou

(Note, I printed it as it was printed in the program that night, spelling errors and all). Some interesting names on the Opry that night including Hank Snow's son, Jimmy, along with Slim Whitman, who was an Opry member for a short amount of time.

The final line-up to be featured is from Saturday November 21, 1992, 22 years ago and 37 years after the first line-up posted.

1st show
6:30: GHS Strings
Porter Wagoner (host): On A Highway Headed South
Jim Ed Brown: I Don't Want to Have to Marry You
Porter Wagoner: Green, Green Grass of Home

6:45: Country Music Hall of Fame
Grandpa Jones (host): Old Blue
Skeeter Davis: The End of the World
Riders In The Sky: How Does He Yodel
Grandpa Jones: Come and Dine

7:00: Shoney's
John Conlee (host): I'm Only in it for the Love
Roy Drusky: Second Hand Rose
Stonewall Jackson: Don't Be Angry
Jeannie Seely: Don't Touch Me
Ray Pillow: Please Don't Leave Me Anymore
John Conlee: Friday Night Blues

7:30: Standard Candy
Billy Walker (host): Coffee Brown Eyes
David Houston: Secret Love
Jean Shepard: I'm Just an Old Bridge that You Keep Burning
Stacy Dean Campbell: Singing the Blues/Poor Man's Rose
Billy Walker: Let My Faith Begin to Move

8:00: Martha White
Jimmy C Newman (host): Colinda
Osborne Brothers: Rocky Top
Oswald: Hawaiian March
Jeanne Pruett: Satin Sheets
Opry Square Dance Band/Stoney Mountain Cloggers: Forked Deer
Jimmy C Newman: Cajun's Dream/Happy Cajun

8:30: Kraft
Hank Snow (host): The Wreck of the Old 97/One More Ride
4 Guys: Cottonfields/Mariah
Charlie Louvin & Monroe Fields: Must You Throw Dirt in My Face
Mike Snider: Foggy Mountain Breakdown/Eating Chicken Necks and Wings
The Whites: Keep on the Sunny Side
Hank Snow: My First Night Alone

2nd show
9:30: Dollar General
Porter Wagoner (host): Ol' Slewfoot
Skeeter Davis: I Ain't Never
Bill Carlisle: No Help Wanted
Roy Drusky: Somewhere My Love
Jeannie Seely: Go Down Swinging
Porter Wagoner: An Old Log Cabin for Sale/Dooley

10:00: Little Debbie
Grandpa Jones (host): Kitty Klide
Riders In The Sky: Boots and Saddle
Grandpa Jones: It's Raining Here This Morning

10:15: Tennessee Pride/Sunbeam
John Conlee (host): Backside of 30
Stacy Dean Campbell: Poor Man's Rose
John Conlee: Rose Colored Glasses

10:30: Randy Travis Enterprises
Osborne Brothers (host): A Pain in My Heart and Blues on My Mind
Jean Shepard: I Don't See How I Can Make It With You Gone
Terry Eldridge: Your Own Set of Rules
David Crowe: Sally Goodin

10:45: B.C. Powder
4 Guys (host): Operator, Get My Jesus on the Line
Mike Snider: Soldiers Joy/Angeline The Baker/Old Molly Hare
Opry Square Dance Band/Stoney Mountain Cloggers: Blackberry Blossom
4 Guys: Head On Over to the Twist and Shout

11:00: Coca-Cola
Hank Snow (host): That Heart Belongs to Me
The Whites: Doing it By the Book
Charlie Walker: Who Will Buy the Wine
Justin Tubb: Thanks, Troubadour, Thanks
Jim Ed Brown: The Old Lamplighter
Hank Snow: Brand on my Heart

11:30: Creamette
Jimmy C Newman (host): Big Mamou
Charlie Louvin & Monroe Fields: My Baby's Gone
Jeanne Pruett: Temporarily Yours
Johnny Russell: Me and Bobby McGee
Jimmy C Newman: Jambalaya

You look back at some of these great Opry line-ups from the past and sometimes you just wonder where it all went.

Congratulations to both Jean Shepard and Marty Stuart and enjoy the Opry this weekend!!

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Grand Ole Opry 11/14 & 11/15

Before getting into the line-ups for the Opry shows this weekend, just a few words as I have been reading the comments posted regarding the sound at the Ryman Auditorium and the Opry at the Ryman.

As far as the sound, at least to me, you can tell the difference when listening when the show is at the Grand Ole Opry House or the Ryman Auditorium. The sound just seems a little tighter when at the Opry House. Now when you are there in person, the sound is fine at both places, although I think they tend to turn up the volume a bit at the Opry House. But I don't think it is the building as much as how they are working the sound board.

As far as the comforts of the Opry House versus the Ryman, I guess as we get older we realize the comforts of the Opry House. The seats are padded, the aisles are wider and it is easier to go get a concession or a restroom break. And of course, the parking is free although you might have to walk a bit across the mall parking lot. My biggest complaint is that if you are sitting way up in the balcony, you are pretty high up. Thank goodness that they added the video screens.

My biggest gripe about the Ryman is the parking. On a hockey night, you are paying up to $35 to park in a prime spot, although if you feel like walking there are much cheaper lots further away. If there is an event at the Arena, traffic can be an issue as well as the parking. I do find it interesting the complaints about sitting on the hard benches for a 2 hour show. I guess some forget, or have never experienced the Opry when the show was much longer. Of course the Ryman did a huge business selling seat cushions. Finally, on the plus side, is you are much closer to the stage at the Ryman. The balcony gives everyone a great view of all the performers and it is certainly better to sit up there then under the balcony.

It is a little tough at the Ryman right now with the remodeling project going on. Getting people out and back in on Saturday night with 2 shows is a challenge. But when finished, I think everyone will be pleased with the Ryman improvements.

Now as far as the Opry this week, the show continues its winter run at the Ryman Auditorium with 3 shows this weeekend; the Friday Night Opry and 2 shows on Saturday night. The line-ups have been posted and both nights have full line-ups.

The Friday Night Opry will feature guest artists The Swon Brothers, Kalisa Ewing and Restless Heart. Also scheduled is frequent and popular guest Chris Janson, along with the Annie Moses Band, who also will be appearing on Saturday night. And also appearing on Friday and making their Opry debut will be The Stellas, a husband and wife team originally from Toronto, Canada.

Saturday's Grand Ole Opry will feature Opry members Ricky Skaggs, who is set for both shows, and Vince Gill, who is scheduled for just the 2nd show, as he will probably make his way down to the Ryman after the Predators hockey game. As far as guest artists on Saturday, Greg Bates. Lauren Alaina and Fiddlin' Carson Peters Band are on the schedule. Also scheduled and making his Opry debut will be Stoney LaRue.

Friday November 14
7:00: Jeannie Seely (host); The Swon Brothers; Mike Snider
7:30: The Whites (host); Kalisa Ewing; Annie Moses Band
8:15: John Conlee (host); Jesse McReynolds; The Stellas
8:45: Riders In The Sky (host); Chris Janson; Restless Heart

Saturday November 15
1st show
7:00: Jeannie Seely (host); Greg Bates; (Jimmy Dickens?)
7:30: John Conlee (host); Mike Snider; Stoney LaRue
8:00: Ricky Skaggs (host); Jean Shepard; Fiddlin' Carson Peters Band; Opry Square Dancers
8:30: Riders In The Sky (host); Lauren Alaina; Annie Moses Band

2nd show
9:30: John Conlee (host); Greg Bates; Mike Snider
10:00: Riders In The Sky (host); Jan Howard; Bobby Osborne & The Rocky Top X-Press; Stoney LaRue
10:30: Ricky Skaggs (host); The Whites; Fiddlin' Carson Peters Band; Opry Square Dancers
11:00: Vince Gill (host); Lauren Alaina; Annie Moses Band

Nice to see some variety on both the Saturday shows, but I really hate to see the veterans, such as Jean Shepard, Jan Howard and Bobby Osborne only scheduled for 1 show each. 6 Opry members on Friday night and the first show on Saturday, and 8 on the 2nd Saturday show.

And now, here is the posted Grand Ole Opry line-up from 5 years ago this weekend, November 13 & 14, 2009:

Friday November 13
7:00: Ricky Skaggs (host); Jean Shepard; The Whites
7:30: Jimmy Dickens (host); Connie Smith; Joe Diffie
8:00: Mike Snider (host); Jeannie Seely; Jim Ed Brown; Steve Wariner
8:30: Bill Anderson (host); The Band Perry; Josh Turner

Saturday November 14
1st show
7:00: Jimmy Dickens (host); Connie Smith; Jim Ed Brown
7:30: Bill Anderson (host); Jean Shepard; Mike Snider; Opry Square Dancers
8:00: Carrie Underwood; Jake Owen; Martina McBride; Rodney Atkins

2nd show
9:30: Jimmy Dickens (host); The Whites; Jack Greene; Martina McBride
10:00: Mike Snider (host); Jan Howard; Jimmy C Newman; Carrie Underwood
10:30: Jeannie Seely (host); Jean Shepard; Rodney Atkins; Opry Square Dancers
11:00: Bill Anderson (host); Jesse McReynolds & The Virginia Boys; Jake Owen

Actually, 3 pretty solid shows. Friday night, there was only non-Opry member, while on Saturday night, just 2. The 2nd show on Saturday was much better than the 1st show, as that last hour at 8:00 was televised which reduced the number of acts.

Now, from 10 years ago this weekend, November 12 & 13, 2004:

Friday November 12
7:30: Porter Wagoner (host); Connie Smith; Jesse McReynolds & The Virginia Boys; Carolyn Dawn Johnson
8:00: Ricky Skaggs (host); Charlie Walker; Jack Greene; David Lee Murphy
8:30: Jimmy Dickens (host); Osborne Brothers; Lane Turner
9:00: Bill Anderson (host); Charlie Louvin; Jean Shepard; Sugarland
9:30: John Conlee (host); Alecia Nugent; The Whites

Saturday November 13
1st show
6:30: Jimmy Dickens (host); Jimmy C Newman; Jean Shepard; Connie Smith
7:00: Lorrie Morgan (host); Emerson Drive; Darryl Worley; David Lee Murphy
8:00: Porter Wagoner (host); Billy Walker; Jack Greene; Mountain Heart; Opry Square Dancers
8:30: Vince Gill (host); Jeannie Seely; Jim Ed Brown

2nd show
9:30: Jimmy Dickens (host); Jimmy C Newman; Lorrie Morgan
10:00: Porter Wagoner (host); Jan Howard; Billy Walker; David Lee Murphy
10:30: Jean Shepard (host); Jesse McReynolds & The Virginia Boys; Darryl Worley; Opry Square Dancers
11:00: Jim Ed Brown (host); Osborne Brothers; Emerson Drive
11:30: Jeannie Seely (host); Connie Smith; Mountain Heart

Again, 2 pretty good nights. Lots's of acts and lot's of Opry members.

For this week's feature line-up, I go back 62 years ago this weekend to Saturday November 15, 1952. Some interesting names performed that night and a nice look back.

7:30: Warren Paint
Roy Acuff (host): Low and Lonely
Lew Childre: Hang Out the Front Door Key
Roy Acuff: Eye From on High
Howdy Forrester: Blackberry Blossom

7:45: American Ace
Roy Acuff (host): They Can Only Fill One Grave
Webb Pierce: That Heart Belongs to Me
Roy Acuff: I'll Fly Away
Oswald: Surely Is A Train
Riddle: Bill Bailey

8:00: Martha White
Ernest Tubb: Fortunes in Memories
Hank Snow: The Girl Who Invented Kissin'
Crook Brothers: Sally Goodin
Carter Family: Willow Will You Weep for Me
Bill Monroe: Footprints In the Snow
Moon Mullican: Mean Mama Blues
Ernest Tubb: Driftwood on the River
June Carter: Comedy-Walkin' To Missouri
Chet Atkins: Guitar Polka
Hank Snow: Such A Fool As I
Bill Monroe: Tall Timber

8:30: Prince Albert Show
Red Foley (host): Birmingham Bounce
Minnie Pearl: Comedy
Martha Carson: Crying Holy to the Lord
Square Dancers: Mississippi Sawyer
Red Foley: My God Is Real
Old Hickory Singers: Kentucky Babe
Rod Brasfield: Comedy
Martha Carson: Swing Down A Chariot
String Bean: Old Joe Clark
Red Foley: Somebody's Crying
Square Dancers: Devil's Dream

9:00: Royal Crown Cola
Roy Acuff (host): Don't Make Me Go To Bed
Fruit Jar Drinkers: McCloud's Reel
George Morgan: Yesterday's Roses
Duke of Paducah: Comedy
Jug Band: Uncle Noah's Ark
Grandpa Jones: Are You From Dixie
Roy Acuff: Thank God
Homer Harris: To Be Selected
Oswald: Roll On Buddy
Howdy Forrester: Sally Goodin'

9:30: Fortune Feed
Carl Smith (host): Our Honeymoon
Jimmy Dickens: You Don't Love Me
Ray Price: I Can't Escape From You
Anita Carter: Foggy Mountain Top
Lonzo and Oscar: Let's Live A Little No.2
Possum Hunters: Bill Cheatham
Carl Smith: Sing Her A Love Song
Jimmy Dickens: John Henry
Faron Young: Going Steady
Carl Smith: This Side of Heaven
Hal Smith: Sally Goodin'

10:00: Wall Rite
George Morgan (host): I Love Everything About You
Bill Monroe: When the Cactus Are in Bloom
Johnny and Jack: Don't Let the Stars Get in Your Eyes
Tommy Sosebee: I'd Trade All My Tomorrows
Don Slayman: Turkey in the Straw

10:15: Dr. Le Gear
George Morgan (host): Honky Tonk Street
Cowboy Copas: Some Fine Morning
Bill Monroe: Boat of Love
Webb Pierce: I'll Always Take Care of You
Charlie Cline: Arkansas Traveler

10:30: Jefferson Island Salt
Ernest Tubb (host): Somebody's Stolen My Honey
Jimmy Dickens (host): Asleepin' At the Foot of the Bed
Gully Jumpers: Soldiers Joy
Faron Young: My Open Arms
June Carter: Beautiful Morning Glory
Ernest Tubb: I'm With A Crowd But So Alone
Ray Price: Please Be Mine
Chet Atkins: Mary Lou
Jimmy Dickens: Hot Diggety Day
Ernest Tubb: Daisy May

11:00: Soltice
Roy Acuff (host): The Streamlined Cannon Ball
Lonzo and Oscar: Goodbye Little Darlin'
Roy and The Gang: Gethseme
Howdy Forrester: Cripple Creek

11:15: O-Cello
Carl Smith (host): There's Nothing As Sweet As My Baby
Johnny and Jack: The Only One I Loved I Lost
String Bean: Roll On Buddy, Roll On
Carl Smith: I Overlooked An Orchard
Fiddle: Rickett's Hornpipe

11:30: Darimix
Hank Snow (host): I Went to Your Wedding
Lew Childre: Sister Lucy
Moon Mullican: Pipeliner Blues
Crook Brothers: New Five Cents
Hank Snow: Boogie Woogie Flying Crowd

11:45: Hester Battery Co.
Cowboy Copas (host): Boomerang
Sam and Kirk: Sugar Moon
Grandpa Jones: Frog Hair
Fruit Jar Drinkers: Sweet Jenny Lee
Cowboy Copas: Copy Cat

I don't think anybody could complain about the show that night!!

Enjoy the Opry this weekend!!

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Grand Ole Opry 11/7 & 11/8

The Grand Ole Opry has posted the line-ups for the weekend shows. With November upon us, it also marks the Opry's return to the Ryman Auditorium for the next 3 months, and now until the end of the year, the Opry will be back to 2 shows on most Saturday nights.

The Friday Night Opry for this week looks very good. For openers, you have Stonewall Jackson returning to the Opry stage for just the 2nd time this year. It was on November 3, 1956 that Stonewall first joined the Grand Ole Opry, which means that this week he will be celebrating 58 years as an Opry member. (as a disclaimer, he was fired from the Opry in December 1964 for not making the required number of Opry appearances, and he rejoined the cast in May 1969). So while he has not been a member for the entire 58 years, it is still an accomplishment that I hope gets mentioned.

Joining Stonewall on Friday night will be guest artists Deana Carter and The Secret Sisters, along with O'Shea, who will be making their Opry debut. As far as Opry members, Steve Wariner is scheduled, along with Bill Anderson, Del McCoury and one of the Opry's newest members, Old Crow Medicine Show, with the latter 3 also scheduled for Saturday night.

Joining that group on Saturday night will be Holly Williams, along with Chase Bryant and Sara Haze. And on the 2nd show, a hosting assignment goes to Ray Pillow.

Friday November 7
7:00: The Whites (host); Mark Wills; Del McCoury Band
7:30: Mike Snider (host); Deana Carter; The Secret Sisters
8:15: Bill Anderson (host); Stonewall Jackson; Sam Bush
8:45: Steve Wariner (host); O'Shea; Old Crow Medicine Show

Saturday November 8
1st show
7:00: Jeannie Seely (host); Sara Haze
7:30: Mike Snider (host); Chase Bryant; Del McCoury Band
8:00: Bill Anderson (host); Bobby Osborne & The Rocky Top X-Press; Holly Williams; Opry Square Dancers
8:30: Old Crow Medicine Show

2nd show
9:30: Jeannie Seely (host); Sara Haze
10:00: Ray Pillow (host); Chase Bryant; Del McCoury Band
10:30: Bill Anderson (host); Jesse McReynolds; Holly Williams; Opry Square Dancers
11:00: Old Crow Medicine Show

The have left the usual spot open on Saturday night for Jimmy Dickens, and I am sure that on Saturday, they have given Old Crow the entire last segment.

Overall, 2 very good nights as far as the Opry is concerned. And for those wondering, there will be a live Ernest Tubb Midnight Jamboree this weekend with Rex Allen, Jr. as the host.

And now, here is the posted Grand Ole Opry line-up from 5 years ago this weekend, November 6 & 7, 2009:

Friday November 6
7:00: Jean Shepard (host); The Whites; The Steeldrivers
7:30: Jimmy Dickens (host); Jesse McReynolds & The Virginia Boys; Bomshel
8:00: Bill Anderson (host); Jan Howard; Joey+Rory
8:30: Mike Snider (host); Connie Smith; Gene Watson
Saturday November 7
1st show
7:00: Jimmy Dickens (host); Jimmy C Newman; The Isaacs
7:30: Mike Snider (host); The Whites; Jean Shepard; Sarah Buxton
8:00: Riders In The Sky (host); Ray Pillow; Rebecca Lynn Howard; Opry Square Dancers
8:30: Bill Anderson (host); Connie Smith; Gene Watson

2nd show
9:30: Jimmy Dickens (host); Jimmy C Newman; The Isaacs
10:00: Mike Snider (host); Jean Shepard; Sarah Buxton
10:30: Riders In The Sky (host); Stu Phillips; Rebecca Lynn Howard; Opry Square Dancers
11:00: Bill Anderson (host); Connie Smith; Gene Watson

And from 10 years ago this weekend, November 5 & 6, 2004:

Friday November 5
7:30: Porter Wagoner (host); Connie Smith; Jimmy C Newman; Larry Sparks
8:00: Jeannie Seely (host); Jack Greene; Jim Ed Brown; King Wilkie
8:30: Jimmy Dickens (host); The Whites; Jessica Andrews
9:00: John Conlee (host); Osborne Brothers; George Canyon
9:30: George Hamilton IV (host); Jan Howard; Jesse McReynolds & The Virginia Boys; Marty Stuart

Saturday November 6
1st show
6:30: Jimmy Dickens (host); Connie Smith; Larry Sparks
7:00: Jeannie Seely (host); The Whites; T. Graham Brown
7:30: Jimmy C Newman (host); Osborne Brothers; Jessica Andrews
8:00: Porter Wagoner (host); Billy Walker; George Canyon; Opry Square Dancers
8:30: Bill Anderson (host); John Conlee; Buddy Jewell

2nd show
9:30: Jimmy Dickens (host); The Whites; Larry Sparks
10:00: Porter Wagoner (host); Connie Smith; Billy Walker; T. Graham Brown
10:30: George Hamilton IV (host); Stonewall Jackson; Jessica Andrews; Opry Square Dancers
11:00: Bill Anderson (host); Jack Greene; George Canyon
11:30: John Conlee (host); Ray Pillow; Buddy Jewell

For this week's feature line-ups, I have 2 to offer. The first is from November 10, 1962 which was the Grand Ole Opry's 37th birthday celebration. There was one show from the Ryman Auditorium that night and it went from 6:30 until midnight. Here is the running order of the show, 52 years ago this weekend, November 10, 1962:

6:30: J.L. Perry
Willis Brothers (host): Big Daddy
Sonny James: Young Love
Carl Butler: Honky Tonkitis
Cousin Jody: Television Set
Merle Kilgore: Something Going On
Skeeter Willis: Sally Goodin
Melba Montgomery: Happy You; Lonely Me
Billy Deaton: (?)
Willis Brothers: Everylovin' Dixieland

7:00: Delited
Ray Price (host): Pride
Bill Carlisle: It Takes All Kinds
Billy Walker: Charlie's Shoes
Curly Fox: The Old Gray Mule
Ferlin Husky: It Was You
Stringbean: Barnyard Banjo Picking
Texas Ruby: California Blues
Ray Price: Walking Slow

7:30: Pet Milk
Jim Reeves (host): I'm Gonna Change Everything
Glaser Brothers: I'm Losing Again
Hawshaw Hawkins: Silver Threads and Golden Needles
Jimmy Dean: (?)
Jim Reeves: Pride Goes For A Fall
Jean Shepard: One Less Heartache
George Hamilton IV: If You Don't Know
Blue Boys: Wheels
Jim Reeves: Stand At Your Window

8:00: Martha White
Flatt & Scruggs (host): The Ballad of Jed Clampett
Cowboy Copas: Alabam'
Jimmy Newman: Bayou Talk
Del Wood: China Town
Flatt & Scruggs: Coal Loading Johnny
Skeeter Davis: The End of the World
Justin Tubb: (?)
Crook Brothers: Lafayette
Flatt & Scruggs: Shuckling the Corn

8:30: Bass Homes
Porter Wagoner (host): (?)
Hank Locklin: Send Me the Pillow You Dream On
Roy Drusky: Second Hand Rose
Archie Campbell: Comedy
Jordanaires: (?)
Patsy Cline: She's Got You
Leroy Van Dyke: Auctioneer
Porter Wagoner: (?)

9:00: Jefferson Island Salt
Ernest Tubb (host): I'm Looking High and Low for My Baby
Wilburn Brothers: Trouble's Back in Town
Bill Monroe: Uncle Pen
Carters: The Sun's Gonna Shine In My Backdoor Someday
Ernest Tubb: Rainbow at Midnight
Cousin Jody: Don't Make Love in A Buggy 'Cause Horses Carry Tales
Margie Bowes: I Really Don't Want to Know
Fruit Jar Drinkers: Katy Hill
Ernest Tubb: (?)

9:30: Stephens
Faron Young (host): Back Track
George Morgan: Macht Nichts
Carl Butler: Don't Let Me Cross Over
Louvin Brothers: Must You Throw Dirt In My Face
Bill Anderson: Mama Sang A Song
Loretta Lynn: Success
George Jones: (?)
Faron Young: Going Steady

10:00: Gates Rubber
Jim Reeves (host): Billy Bayou
Willis Brothers: Goodnight Cincinnati; Good Morning Tennessee
Skeeter Davis: Something Precious
Jim Reeves: Adios Amigo
Blue Boys: Red River Rock

10:15: Corn Products
Ray Price (host): Crazy Arms
Stringbean: Pretty Polly
Bill Carlisle: Hand Me Down My Walking Cane
Del Wood: Sheik of Araby
Ray Price: You Done Me Wrong

10:30: Harvey's
Marty Robbins (host): (?)
Flatt & Scruggs: The Ballad of Jed Clampett
Billy Walker: Willic the Weeper
Marty Robbins: (?)

10:45: De Con
Ferlin Husky (host): Wings of A Dove
Hank Locklin: Please Help Me I'm Falling
Glaser Brothers: Let Me Down Easy
Crook Brothers: Soldiers Joy
Simon Crum: (?)

11:00: Coca-Cola
Hawkshaw Hawkins (host): Darkness on the Face of the Earth
Porter Wagoner (?)
Louvin Brothers: (?)
Patsy Cline: Heartaches
Jordanaires: (?)
Jean Shepard: Two Shadows; Two Voices; Two Faces
George Hamilton IV: China Doll
Sam & Kirk McGee: Columbus Stockade Blues
Fruit Jar Drinkers: Cacklin' Hen
Hawkshaw Hawkins: Twenty Miles From the Shore

11:30: SSS Tonic
George Morgan (host): Candy Kisses
Bill Monroe: Blue Moon of Kentucky
Jimmy Newman: I May Fall Again
Wilburn Brothers: (?)
Roy Drusky: It Worries Me
Margie Bowes: Judge Not
Cowbody Copas: Alabam'
Bill Anderson: Po' Folks
George Morgan: Almost

I don't think anyone can complain about that Opry show!!

Finally, it was on November 8, 1997 that Johnny Paycheck became a member of the Grand Ole Opry. He was inducted as a member by John Conlee and it was televised on TNN. Johnny really appreciated his Opry membership as it came after a period of personal difficulties for him, even having spent time in prison. Johnny was only able to enjoy his Opry membership for a short period of time as within a few years, respiratory issues forced Johnny to quit performing and he spent his final years in declining health, passing away in February 2003. Here is the Opry running order from Saturday November 8, 1997, the night Johnny Paycheck joined the cast of the Opry:

1st show
6:30: GHS Strings
Grandpa Jones (host): Going Down the Country
Bill Carlisle: No Help Wanted

6:45: Jogging In A Jug
Steve Wariner (host): Domino Theory of Love
Johnny Russell: Act Naturally
Steve Wariner: Like A River to the Sea

7:00: Shoney's
Porter Wagoner (host): Company's Comin'
Skeeter Davis: I'll Fly Away
George Hamilton IV: Abilene
Charlie Louvin: Will You Visit Me On Sundays
Osborne Brothers: Rocky Top/Rank Strangers
Porter Wagoner: Misery Loves Company

7:30: Standard Candy
John Conlee (host): The Old School
Bryan White: One Small Miracle
Terri Clark: Poor, Poor, Pitiful Me
Johnny Paycheck: Take This Job and Shove It/The Old Violin

8:00: Martha White
Bill Anderson (host): Po' Folks
Jean Shepard: Slippin' Away
Ray Pillow: Someone Had to Teach You
Billy Grammer: I Dreamed of An Old Love Affair
Opry Square Dance Band/Melvin Sloan Dancers: Cherokee Shuffle
Bill Anderson: I Love You Drops

8:30: Clifty Farms
Ricky Skaggs (host): Dim Lights, Thick Smoke
Jimmy C Newman: Lucille
Charlie Walker: Smoke, Smoke, Smoke
The Whites: It Should've Been Easy
Jeannie Seely: When He Leaves You
Ricky Skaggs: Let Me Walk Lord, By your Side

2nd show
9:30: Dollar General
Porter Wagoner (host): Howdy Neighbor Howdy
Oswald: What A Friend
Stonewall Jackson: Waterloo
Terri Clark: I Got Better Things to Do/Poor, Poor Pitiful Me
Kristy Lynn: Walk Softly On My Heart
Porter Wagoner: If Teardrops Were Pennies

10:00: Opry Book
Grandpa Jones (host): Apple Jack
Jan Howard: Take Me As I Am
Grandpa Jones: My Little Old Home Down in New Orleans

10:15: Banquet
Jimmy C Newman (host): LaCajun Band
Jean Shepard: Together Again
Jimmy C Newman: Jambalaya/Cajun Stripper

10:30: Purnell
Bill Anderson (host): I Get the Fever
Steve Wariner: One Small Miracle
Bill Anderson: This Is A Love Song

10:45: Your Quality Certified Home Builders
Steve Wariner (host): Domino Theory of Love
Ray Pillow: One Too Many Memories
Opry Square Dance Band/Melvin Sloan Dancers: Sugar in the Goard
Steve Wariner: Life's Highway

11:00: Coca-Cola
Ricky Skaggs (host): I Got A Pig Home in the Pen
4 Guys: Patriotic Melody
Johnny Paycheck: A-11/The Old Violin/Memory of A Memory
Ricky Skaggs: Little Maggie

11:30: Opry Book
Johnny Russell (host): Someday I'll Sober Up
Riders In The Sky: Riding Down the Canyon
Charlie Walker: There's A Star Spangled Banner Waving Somewhere
The Whites: He Took Your Place/Swing Down Chariot/Swing Lo, Sweet Chariot
Jeannie Seely: Those Memories

Enjoy the Opry this weekend!!