Thursday, June 25, 2015

Grand Ole Opry 6/26 & 6/27

Here is the Grand Ole Opry line-ups for this weekend:

Friday June 26
7:00: Connie Smith (host); The Farm; Mike Snider
7:30: Riders In The Sky (host); Rhett Akins; Russell Moore & IIIrd Tyme Out
8:15: Bill Anderson (host); The Whites; Sundy Best
8:45: Diamond Rio (host); Bobby Osborne & The Rocky Top X-Press; Doyle Dykes featuring The Booth Brothers

Saturday June 27
7:00: Connie Smith (host); Shelley Skidmore; Jesse McReynolds
7:30: Mike Snider (host); Rhett Akins; Warren Haynes featuring Railroad Earth
8:15: The Whites (host); Exile; Opry Square Dancers
8:45: Bill Anderson (host); Elizabeth Cook; Gene Watson

The interesting name this weekend is Warren Haynes. For those who do not know Warren, he comes from the Southern Rock tree of the Allman Brothers and is associated with a number of Jambands, such as the Grateful Dead. My wife is a big follower of Warren and his group, Gov't Mule. I, along with her, have seen Warren in concert several times and he does an awesome job. But he is just not someone I associate as being on the Opry. But then, the more I think about it, he is probably more country and bluegrass oriented then many of those who perform on the Opry today.

As far as the rest of the weekend line-up, while it is solid, I would say that it is not one of the best weekends of the year. As far as Opry members, both nights will feature Connie Smith, Mike Snider, The Whites and Bill Anderson, while on Friday they will be joined by Riders In The Sky, Diamond Rio and Bobby Osborne, while on Saturday it will be Jesse McReynolds appearing.

And now, here is the posted Grand Ole Opry line-up from five years ago this weekend, June 25 & 26, 2010. Both nights took place at the Ryman Auditorium.

Friday June 25
7:00: Jeannie Seely (host); Jimmy C Newman; Randy Kohrs
7:30: Ray Pillow (host); Jack Greene; Sunny Sweeney
8:15: Jim Ed Brown (host); Stu Phillips; Jesse McReynolds; Joey+Rory
8:45: Mike Snider (host); Connie Smith; Raul Malo

Saturday June 26
7:00: The Whites (host); Connie Smith; Sam Bush
7:30: Jeannie Seely (host); Stonewall Jackson; Jack Greene; Sarah Jarosz
8:15: Jim Ed Brown (host); Jan Howard; Steel Magnolia; Opry Square Dancers
8:45: Bill Anderson (host); Bobby Osborne & The Rocky Top X-Press; Loretta Lynn

And from ten years ago, the weekend of June 24 & 25, 2005:

Friday June 24
7:30: Porter Wagoner (host); John Conlee; Robbie Fulks
8:00: Riders In The Sky (host); Jesse McReynolds & The Virginia Boys; Trent Willmon
8:30: Jimmy Dickens (host); The Whites; Rebecca Lynn Howard
9:00: Bill Anderson (host); Cory & Jarrod Walker; Jon Randall
9:30: Mike Snider (host); Mel McDaniel; David Lee Murphy

Saturday June 25
1st show
6:30: Jimmy Dickens (host); John Conlee; Kathleen Edwards
7:00: Brad Paisley (host); Diamond Rio; Nanci Griffith; Earl Scruggs
8:00: Porter Wagoner (host); Billy Walker; Billy Yates; Opry Square Dancers
8:30: Emmylou Harris (host); The Whites; Reflections Ridge

2nd show
9:30: Jimmy Dickens (host); John Conlee; Brad Paisley
10:00: Porter Wagoner (host); Jan Howard; Mel McDaniel; Earl Scruggs
10:30: Diamond Rio (host); Charlie Louvin; Billy Yates; Opry Square Dancers
11:00: Emmylou Harris (host); The Whites; Reflection Ridge
11:30: Ray Pillow (host); Billy Walker; Kathleen Edwards

For this week's look back into Grand Ole Opry history, it was on Saturday June 24, 1989 that Garth Brooks made his debut on the Grand Ole Opry. Later this year, Garth will celebrate his 25th anniversary as a member of the Grand Ole Opry as he joined the cast on October 6, 1990. From all indications, Garth will be making an Opry appearance later this year to celebrate his anniversary.

On the night that Garth made his Opry debut, he was introduced on the 1st show by Johnny Russell. After that night, when Garth would come to the Opry he would ask to be scheduled on Johnny's segment as a connection and friendship had formed between the two of them. And on the night Garth became a member, it was Johnny who did the honors.

Here is the running order from Saturday June 24, 1989, the night Garth Brooks first appeared on the Opry:

1st show
6:30: Mrs. Grissoms
Charlie Walker (host): Does Ft. Worth Every Cross Your Mind
Jeannie Seely: Tell Me Again
Charlie Walker: Pick Me Up On Your Way Down

6:45: Rudy's
Billy Walker (host): Ashes of Love/Blue Moon of Kentucky/That's All Right
Jean Shepard: Why Don't You Haul Off and Love Me
Billy Walker: Cross the Brazos at Waco/Charlie's Shoes

7:00: Shoney's
Jack Greene (host): There's A Whole Lot About A Woman A Man Don't Know
Ray Pillow: Til the Best Comes Along
Del Wood: Piano Roll Blues
The Whites: Blue Letters/Follow the Leader
Jack Greene: Don't You Ever Get Tired of Hurting Me

7:30: Standard Candy
Johnny Russell: In A Mansion Stands My Love
4 Guys: Turn Around, Look At Me/Cocktails
Garth Brooks: I'm Much Too Young to Feel This Damn Old/If Tomorrow Never Comes
Johnny Russell: Act Naturally

8:00: Martha White
Roy Acuff (host): Wabash Cannonball
Bill Carlisle: Is Zat You Myrtle/Elvira
Roy Drusky: Wings of A Dove/One Day At A Time
Opry Square Dance Band/Stoney Mountain Cloggers: Bill Cheatham
Oswald: Black Smoke's A Risin

8:30: Music Valley
Hank Snow (host): The Call of the Wild
Charlie Louvin: Will You Visit Me On Sundays
Jimmy C Newman: LaCajun Band
Stonewall Jackson: Don't Be Angry
Mike Snider: Ground Speed
Hank Snow: I Almost Lost My Mind

2nd show
9:30: Dollar General
Jack Greene (host): Happy Tracks
4 Guys: I'm All Tied Up
Billy Walker: A Million and One
The Whites: Hangin' Around/Doing It By the Book
Jack Greene: The Last Letter

10:00: Little Debbie
Charlie Walker (host): A Way to Free Myself
Jean Shepard: A Home In San Antone/Time Changes Everything/Roly Poly
Charlie Walker: Don't Squeeze My Sharmon

10:15: Sunbeam
Roy Acuff (host): Meeting in the Air
Bill Carlisle: Worried Man Blues
Roy Acuff: Back in the Country/I'll Fly Away

10:30: Pet Milk
Jimmy C Newman (host): Colinda
Garth Brooks: I'm Much Too Young to Feel this Damn Old/If Tomorrow Never Comes
Jimmy C Newman: Big Mamou

10:45: B.C. Powder
Roy Drusky (host): Too Old to Die Young
Opry Square Dance Band/Stoney Mountain Cloggers: Dance All Night
Roy Drusky: Mansion Over the Hilltop

11:00: Coca-Cola
Ray Pillow (host): Too Many Memories
Jeannie Seely: One Step Away from Coming Home/Why Doesn't He Just Leave Me Alone
Mike Snider: Look What They've Done to the Dominica Chicken
Ray Pillow: I'll Break Out Again Tonight

11:30: Creamettes
Johnny Russell (host): Got No Reason Now For Going Home
Connie Smith: Walk Me to the Door/Why Don't You Love Me
Charlie Louvin: The Precious Jewel/Buried Alive
Johnny Russell: Me and Bobbi McGee

The other item about that night was after Hank Snow completed his segment, he drove home and was going to come back to host the 11:00 segment on the 2nd show. The problem was that he was involved in a car accident and was not able to get back. As you saw, Ray Pillow ended up hosting the segment for Hank. You never can tell what will happen on any given night at the Opry

Back to the vacation. I just wanted to take a quick moment and post this weekend's shows.

Enjoy the Opry this weekend!!


  1. I just have one comment about the Friday night show. I'll let everyone decide what performance I am talking about in order to not be too cruel here. For several minutes at one point I thought somebody was being tortured or we were hearing that dying calf in a hail storm I hear people talk about.

    I guess I just have strange taste, am too old or just a fuddy duddy. The crowd seemed pleased so I know it must be me that is the outcast. Or, maybe I'm just not falling for the idea that because some say it is good and it is on the world famous Grand Ole Opry, it must be good.

    Cranky Jim
    Knightsville, IN

  2. Ok, I could make a guess and have it narrowed down to a couple!!!

    On a positive note, Riders In The Sky, Russell Moore, Bill Anderson, The Whites, Diamond Rio and Bobby Osborne all sounded pretty good, although Bobby did have voice issues. I missed the first segment, which is perhaps where the "damage" took place, and I missed the final act as the WSM signal went out.

  3. Byron,

    I agree that the performers you mention did good and Bobby mentioned that his voice was not at it's best. Just that one performance that got to me!

    Regarding the June 24, 1989 show the only additional note I have is that Oswald was not with Roy that night. I did not note but assume Joe Edwards played on the Cannonball with Roy as he often did when Os was missing.

    Knightsville, IN

  4. Want to hear something sad? I've been in Nashville all weekend and never turned the Opry on once. I drove by the Opry House earlier in the day...but every time I do that I see all the bulldozed spots where the Opryland offices used to be and I get really depressed. Had a LOT of fun during those years. On the upside, my car has Sirius so I can listen to Bluegrass Junction and Willie's Roadhouse. Now THAT'S some good music!

  5. On a couple of separate notes: I spent the afternoon at the Hall of Fame with my brother. Having worked for the HOF in the distant past, I know what they have available for display and I find it hard to believe that they have more of Luke Bryan and Keith Urban's t-shirts on display while the only mention of Roy Acuff you'll find is a flour sack with his likeness on it. I wasn't especially impressed with the expanded exhibit space. It feels more like an advertisement for Scott Borchetta and his Big Machine Records juggernaut. There's a little too much Taylor Swift and not enough Bill Monroe (although I did spend a long, long time paying my respects to the Holy Grail of Bluegrass...the big man's F-5 mandolin) BUT I will say that if you have a chance to visit while the "Nashville Cats" exhibit is going on...DO IT! It's a little different from past exhibits...not a tremendous amount of costumes and instruments on display....but it's a fascinating and educational tribute to the Nashville session musicians like Harold Bradley, Weldon Myrick, Wayne Moss, Pete Drake, Pig Robbins and the rest. I learned a lot it was fun to listen to recordings while looking at a list of the musicians who were playing on the session. They've currently got a nice "pop-out" exhibit on Ronnie Milsap and the Duke of Paducah's costume and shoes are also currently on exhibit. Those little mini exhibits are one thing the Hall of Fame has done very well in the new space. The next feature gallery will be on Sam Phillips. I always seem to hit town the week before one of those opens or the week after it closes. I was also disappointed to see that there is no mention of Minnie Pearl anywhere and the display cases from the pre-1950's are a little bit, shall we say, thin. But they do have a nice tribute to Jimmy Dickens and they've added Earl Scruggs' banjo to the "Precious Jewels" display.

    If you're visiting the Hall, take a minute to chat with David Anderson, the guitar player who's been working the lobby since it opened. Not only is he a great musician but he's a heck of a nice guy and we had a nice, long visit this afternoon.

    I also drove the old tour bus route through downtown, over to Music Row and then down to my old college, Lipscomb University, and I was struck by two things. Number one: there are parts of Nashville that look EXACTLY the same since I first hit town 45 years ago! The same buildings, the same businesses and restaurants....everything. It was like stepping back in time. Number two: What in the Sam Hill are they doing to Music Row?! I know why everyone had a fit when they were talking about flattening the old RCA building and Studio A and rightly so. But they have bulldozed a lot of those historic old houses that contained studios and publishing offices and record labels and they're building parking lots and non-descript condos. I didn't even recognized Demonbreun Street near the old Hall of Fame. If I didn't know what street I was on I wouldn't have known what street I was on. First Avenue downtown is the same way. And 5th Avenue is a two-way street now...which almost got me in trouble! Still, it was nice to visit some old haunts and relive some great times. I'll be in New York this time next week but I hear that Nashville's 4th of July fireworks display is going the be the largest in the country this year.

  6. We listened to Saturday's Opry and all-in-all it was a good show but what really impressed us was Jesse McReynolds - other than slightly missing his Grandson's name (but being the professional that he is, made a good recovery for his faux pas) - he was outstanding and the audience responded as such. Audiences at the Opry generally love bluegrass music but there is just not enough of it. The replacement for Elizabeth Cook, Sarah Potenza, was certainly different, first time ever hearing her and yet not quite sure why she received a S-O. Always love Connie, Bill and Gene Watson.

  7. Thanks Barry for the detailed report. I have to agree with what you wrote. For those who have not been to the Country Music Hall of Fame since the addition was put on and the connection added to the Omni Hotel, it is a lot different then it was a few years ago. And they are really focusing on the modern era of country music, which I am sure is helping to draw the bigger crowds. I still have the issue with the ticket windows as it seems to take forever to get into the Hall, even with the yearly pass that I always purchase.

    Music Row is really changing and there seems to be a number of individuals who really don't care about the historic value of the buildings that are being destroyed. Recording studios, older houses, offices of record companies....all in the name of progress.

  8. Fred, Bismarck:

    Responding to Barry's good report:

    For us oldtimers, it's a choice of misery. We deplore the destruction of familiar landscapes ... but even worse, perhaps, is perfect preservation of the physical setting we remember, while the people who made it special have all been removed.

  9. The song the Four Guys did sang it's not "Cocktails," it's "Kokomo" by the Beach Boys.