Thursday, August 13, 2015

Grand Ole Opry 8/14 & 8/15

Before posting and making any comments on the Opry shows for this week, I just want again to mention how wonderful the Grand Ole Opry was last Saturday night. The first segment of the first show featured only Opry members, which included Marty Stuart, Jeannie Seely, The Whites, Mel Tillis, Del McCoury and the guest of honor, Connie Smith. There were many highlights but I wanted to mention the job that Marty and Del did on Orange Blossom Special, and Connie with Once A Day. Mel did several numbers and was in fine voice. And Pete Fisher presented Connie with a bracelet and said some very nice words about Connie. Later in the show, Alison Krauss and The Cox Family sang some wonderful gospel music and let's not forget Bill Anderson and the return of his Grammer Guitar. Last Saturday was an example of what the Opry could be each week and it was a please to listen.

As far as this week at the Opry, both nights will feature the same four Opry members hosting segments as Jeannie Seely, Ricky Skaggs, Riders In The Sky and Larry Gatlin & The Gatlin Brothers are scheduled. As far as other Opry members, The Whites and Connie Smith are scheduled for both nights, while Bobby Osborne and Josh Turner are on Friday's line-up and Jan Howard is on for Saturday.

Guest artists this weekend include Billy Dean, Billy Ray Cyrus and Dailey & Vincent on Friday night and Mark Wills, Fiddlin' Carson Peters Band, Elizabeth Cook and Daryle Singletary are scheduled for Saturday night. Each show has one slot in the first segment still open.

Friday August 14
7:00: Jeannie Seely (host); Billy Dean
7:30: Ricky Skaggs (host); The Whites; Billy Ray Cyrus
8:15: Riders In The Sky (host); Connie Smith; Dailey & Vincent
8:45: Larry Gatlin & The Gatlin Brothers (host); Bobby Osborne & The Rocky Top X-Press; Josh Turner

Saturday August 15
7:00: Jeannie Seely (host); Mark Wills
7:30: Ricky Skaggs (host); The Whites; Fiddlin' Carson Peters Band
8:15: Riders In The Sky (host); Jan Howard; Elizabeth Cook; Opry Square Dancers
8:45: Larry Gatlin & The Gatlin Brothers (host); Daryle Singletary; Connie Smith

And now, here is the posted Grand Ole Opry line-up from five years ago this weekend, August 13 & 14, 2010. The shows both nights took place at the Ryman Auditorium.

Friday August 13
7:00: Mike Snider (host); Jeannie Seely; Jimmy C Newman; Chuck Wicks
7:30: Ricky Skaggs (host); Jim Ed Brown; The Whites
8:15: Bill Anderson (host); The Grascals; Vince Gill
8:45: Marty Stuart (host); Riders In The Sky; Connie Smith

Saturday August 14
7:00: Bill Anderson (host); Jimmy C Newman; Amber Digby
7:30: The Whites (host); Bobby Osborne & The Rocky Top X-Press; Mark Wills
8:15: Mike Snider (host); Stonewall Jackson; Crystal Gayle; Opry Square Dancers
8:45: Vince Gill (host); Ray Pillow; Jim Ed Brown; Dailey & Vincent

Now from ten years ago this weekend, August 12 & 13, 2005:

Friday August 12
7:30: Porter Wagoner (host); Jimmy C Newman; Jim Lauderdale; Daryle Singletary
8:00: Jim Ed Brown (host); w/Helen Cornelius; Jean Shepard; Karen Peck & New River
8:30: Jimmy Dickens (host); Connie Smith; Rebecca Lynn Howard
9:00: Jean Shepard (host); Elizabeth Cook; Ralph Stanley
9:30: Ricky Skaggs (host); The Whites; John Conlee

Saturday August 13
1st show
6:30: Jimmy Dickens (host); The Whites; Chuck Mead
7:00: Mike Snider (host); Billy Walker; Jimmy C Newman; Shelly Fairchild
7:30: Jim Ed Brown (host); w/Helen Cornelius; Connie Smith; J.D. Crowe & The New South
8:00: Porter Wagoner (host); Jean Shepard; Jesse McReynolds & The Virginia Boys; Luke Stricklin; Opry Square Dancers
8:30: Bill Anderson (host); Jeannie Seely; Lorrie Morgan

2nd show
9:30: Jimmy Dickens (host); Mike Snider; Shelly Fairchild
10:00: Porter Wagoner (host); Jean Shepard; The Whites; J.D. Crowe & The New South
10:30: Lorrie Morgan (host); Billy Walker; Jan Howard; Jack Greene; Opry Square Dancers
11:00: Bill Anderson (host); Connie Smith; Luke Stricklin
11:30: Jeannie Seely (host); Ray Pillow; Jesse McReynolds & The Virginia Boys

For this week's featured Opry line-up, I go to Saturday August 15, 1992 as it was on that night that June Webb made a return appearance on the Grand Ole Opry. June, who was a popular country music singer in the 1950s and into the 1960s, spent time with Roy Acuff's Smoky Mountain Boys and spent many a Saturday night at the Grand Ole Opry. And I also wanted to give special recognition to June as she has recently released a brand new CD, "Reminiscing with Miss June Webb."

Briefly, June Webb is from L'Anse, Michigan, but like many in the entertainment business, she moved around quite a bit. Born into a musical family, the most influential shaping of her life was at an early age in Miami, Florida when her parents got her brother Ford, sister Shirley and her involved in singing, dancing and playing various music instruments. Shirley and June, backed by the family band, became known as the Harmony Sweethearts. They performed with many of country music's top stars including Hank Williams. In fact, the Webb Sisters were scheduled to perform with Hank the night he died, January 1, 1953, in my home town of Canton, Ohio. Not long after, June's path took her on a solo career with many memorable appearances, including the Grand Ole Opry. In the mid 1950s, after a brief stint at RCA, she signed with Roy Acuff's show as the group's lead female singer. It was during this time that June, embarking on a solo career in addition to singing with Roy's group, received the "Most Promising Female" award. In the early 1960s, after many years of performing both as a solo artist and as part of Roy's group, June made the decision that it was time for a change and due to family matters and life in general, she decided to leave the day-to-day grind of a high profile country music career. She basically disappeared from a public life and started to lead a very private one, outside of country music and performing.

After that, though her life to some degree included singing and playing guitar, in general like most everyone else, the years included good times and bad, immeasurable joy and nearly unbearable sorrow while raising a family, putting food on the table and doing everyday stuff. All the while, there was always this faint but ever present tugging at her heart, a yearning, a just below the surface feelings of missing her beloved country music. Unexpectedly, in 2008, June received an email from an interesting character, via a family friend. This gentleman told June a story about his mom and dad gathering the children, a cup of Sealtest Ice Cream and a little wooden spoon in hand, around their black and white TV on Saturday nights to watch June sing country music. That little blast from the past made it all come rushing back, the music, the Opry, and the fans. June wrote the gentleman back and over time, he sent June clips of her on various shows, recordings of her 45s on personal CDs he had made, and wonderful photos of her and her family. One thing led to another, one of which is her website,

Even though she left the music business in the 1960s, her friends in the business did not forget her, especially Roy Acuff. In the last year of Roy's life, he specifically got in touch with June and asked her if she would come up to Nashville and appear with him on the Grand Ole Opry for a final time before he passed away. And of course, June did. The night of that performance was 23 years ago this weekend, Saturday August 15, 1992. There were two shows that night and June was featured on the 2nd show. In celebration of June's new CD, here is the running order of the Grand Ole Opry, Saturday August 15, 1992:

1st show
6:30: GHS Strings
Porter Wagoner (host): Tennessee Saturday Night
Wilma Lee Cooper: There's A Higher Power
Porter Wagoner: Misery Loves Company

6:45: Country Music Hall of Fame
Jim Ed Brown (host): Looking Back to See
Jeannie Seely: Houston
Jim Ed Brown: Send Me the Pillow That You Dream On/Morning

7:00: Shoney's
Bill Monroe (host): I'm On My Way Back to the Old Home
Jeanne Pruett: Temporarily Yours
Charlie Louvin: The Family That Prays
Del Reeves: There She Goes
Billy Walker: Smokey Places
Bill Monroe: Tennessee Blues

7:30: Standard Candy
Ricky Skaggs (host): Same Old, Same Old Love
Justin Tubb: Imagine That
The Whites: San Antonio Rose
Alison Krauss: A New Fool/Another Night
Ricky Skaggs & Sharon Skaggs: Love Can't Ever Get Better Than This

8:00: Martha White
Roy Acuff (host): Wabash Cannonball
Connie Smith: Did We Have to Come This Far to Say Goodbye/Satisfied
Jimmy C Newman: La Cajun Band/Jole Blon
Opry Square Dance Band/Stoney Mountain Cloggers: Sugar in the Gourd
Roy Acuff: That's The Man I'm Looking For

8:30: Opryland
Hank Snow (host): I Don't Hurt Anymore
4 Guys: Big River
Jean Shepard: Why Don't You Haul Off and Love Me
Jack Greene: Statue of A Fool
George Hamilton IV: Break My Mind
Hank Snow: The Rainbows End

2nd show
9:30: Dollar General
Porter Wagoner (host): On A Highway Headed South
Skeeter Davis: The End of the World
Stonewall Jackson: Why I'm Walkin'
Bill Carlisle: Same Old Tale That the Crow Told Me
Alison Krauss: I Thought I Heard You Calling My Name
Alison Krauss & The Cox Family: Standing By the Bedside of A Neighbor
Porter Wagoner: I'm Gonna Get Act Right

10:00: Little Debbie
Bill Monroe (host): Why Did You Wander
Roy Drusky: Blues In My Heart
David Houston: My Elusive Dreams
Bill Monroe: A Beautiful Life

10:15: Tennessee Pride/Sunbeam
Roy Acuff (host): Night Train to Memphis
4 Guys: My Prayer
June Webb: I'm So Lonesome I Could Cry/Making Believe

10:30: Pet Milk
Ricky Skaggs (host): I Wouldn't Change You If I Could
The Whites: Pins & Needles
Ricky Skaggs: Country Boy

10:45: B.C. Powder
Jack Greene (host): Try A Little Kindness
Jan Howard: Rock Me Back to Little Rock/Evil On Your Mind
Opry Square Dance Band/Stoney Mountain Cloggers: Lost Indian
Jack Greene: There Goes My Everything

11:00: Coca-Cola
Hank Snow (host): I've Been Everywhere
Charlie Walker: Pick Me Up On Your Way Down
Jean Shepard: Above and Beyond
Charlie Louvin & Charlie Whitstein: Knoxville Girl
Ray Pillow: Please Don't Leave Me Anymore
Hank Snow: My Little Old Home Down in New Orleans

11:30: Creamette
Jimmy C Newman (host): Colinda
Jim Ed Brown: The 3 Bells
Connie Smith: Once A Day
Johnny Russell: In A Mansion Stands My Love/He'll Have to Go
Jimmy C Newman: Jambalaya

Since that Opry appearance, June has been back in the spotlight and has been on the receiving end of much deserved honors including her recent induction into "America's Old Time Country Music Hall of Fame."

One of the reasons that I posted this line-up is that there is exciting news from June. She has released a brand new CD, "Reminiscing with Miss June Webb." The CD is available on her website, I have listened to the preview and it is outstanding and I highly recommend it if you enjoy traditional country music. What has impressed me is the quality of the CD, the song choice and how June sounds. After all these years, she still has maintained that great voice. The CD is already creating news and it has been awarded the National Traditional Country Music Associations "Pure Country Of The Year Award." She will be heading up to Nebraska in October to accept the award and to do a show.

I realize that there are a lot of younger country music fans who read the blog who might not be familiar with June Webb. There are numerous YouTube videos of her that highlight her days in what many call the "Golden Era of Country Music" and her website is full of great information and clips.

Enjoy the Opry this weekend and thanks for the trip back on memory lane with June Webb!!


  1. The 1992 show brings back great memories. As I grow older and things change, listening to my recordings of the Opry of this era can bring a tear to my eyes.

    When June was on the second show with Roy there was quite a bit of conversation between the two of them and you could tell Roy was very happy to have her back on stage with him. And his eye for the pretty girls could be heard in his voice as he talked with her! She sounded great that night as did the staff band supporting her. Congratulations to June on her new recording project.

    I notice that the Cox family was on with Allison Krauss this night just like this past weekend.

    Speaking of this weekend, it is hard for the Opry to impress or satisfy me these days but this past weekend was really nice and would have been well worth the ticket price.

    Knightsville, IN

  2. Fred, Bismarck:

    Thanks for remembering June Webb. Her ringing tenor was a highlight of Roy's recordings of the late 1950s, and her solo 45-rpm release on Hickory c. 1960, "Sweeter than the Flowers," is still in my heavy rotation.

  3. The Opry has completed the line-up for this weekend. Friday has been filled by Sarah Darling and Jackie Lee got the call for Saturday night.

  4. I found in my notes for Saturday August 15, 1992 that Oswald was in the hospital having surgery on his jaw. If I remember correct that meant that Joe Edwards would have played on the Cannonball that night.

    Knightsville, IN

    1. Not sure if you are asking about Joe Edwards. I know him and could ask him to see if he remembers.

  5. For those who would like a little piece of history, on June Webb's new CD, cut #13 called "Tribute" is a recording from August 15, 1992 of June on the Opry that night, with Roy Acuff's introduction. You can hear parts of the cut on June's website.

  6. In my opinion, the Grand Ole Opry last night was "ok." Ricky Skaggs did a great job and was singing country music last night and not bluegrass, and for those who have not seen pictures of Ricky lately, he has lost a bunch of weight. Larry Gatlin was amazing, as he usually is. The rest were ok, nothing special. Jeannie Seely, Jan Howard and Riders In The Sky did as expected. Connie Smith finished out the show.

  7. did Ricky get a hair cut to go with the weight loss ?