Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Grand Ole Opry 12/11 & 12/12

Before getting into the Grand Ole Opry line-ups for this weekend, I just wanted to comment on the recent Tuesday Night Opry. Usually I am not able to listen to the entire Tuesday night show, but last night I had the opportunity to listen to the entire first show and what a great show it was. Every act did a great job. Not to single anyone out, but Mark O'Connor, who was there along with his wife, did an awesome job. Kristian Bush was fine, and Bill Anderson did "Christmas" which received a standing ovation. I continue to appreciate Carrie Underwood's commitment to the Opry and even with the birth of a child and various other commitments, she will once again hit the 10 Opry appearances for the year. And not to forget Laura Story, who made her Opry debut, and Larry, Steve and Rudy Gatlin. 

That brings me to the final act from last night, Chris Janson. If there was ever a guy begging for an invitation to become a member of the Grand Ole Opry, it is Chris. And I say it is time to invite him, especially now that he has had a #1 single, "Buy Me A Boat" and a top selling album. He has made more than 20 Opry appearances this past year, which continues a trend from the past three years. He talks about listening to the Opry as a child growing up and how much he wanted to be on the Opry, and how much he loves the Opry every time he is on. He continually receives a standing ovation at each performance. I know that the Opry really doesn't need another male member and his music is a little on the "loud" side for me, but he brings excitement to the show. Based on his words and actions, I think he would support the show and would understand what being an Opry member is all about. It is time for the invitation to be given. 

As far as the Opry line-ups for this weekend, the Friday Night Opry will feature Opry members John Conlee, Mike Snider, Riders In The Sky, Bobby Osborne, Ricky Skaggs, The Whites, Vince Gill and Mel Tillis. For Vince, this continues the trend of Friday night appearances, while Ricky makes it for another week. And it is always nice to see and hear Mel on the Opry. John, Mike, The Whites and Ricky will also appear on both shows Saturday night, where they will be joined by Connie Smith, Jesse McReynolds and Bill Anderson. Additionally, Jeannie Seely will be on the first show and Larry Gatlin and The Gatlin Brothers will rush down to the Ryman after doing their Christmas show at the Opryland Hotel, in time to host the 3rd segment on the 2nd show. 

Guest artists on Friday night include Mickey Guyton, Aubrey Peeples, Jim Lauderdale and Chris Carmack. It looks like a few folks from the "Nashville" show will be in town this weekend, as on Saturday night, Charles Esten will be featured on both shows, along with William Michael Morgan and Jessie James Decker. 

Friday December 11
7:00: John Conlee (host); Mickey Guyton; Mike Snider
7:30: Riders In The Sky (host); Bobby Osborne & The Rocky Top X-Press; Aubrey Peeples
8:15: Ricky Skaggs (host); The Whites; Jim Lauderdale
8:45: Vince Gill (host); Chris Carmack; Mel Tillis

Saturday December 12
1st show
7:00: Jeannie Seely (host); William Michael Morgan; Mike Snider
7:30: John Conlee (host); Connie Smith; Jessie James Decker
8:00: Ricky Skaggs (host); The Whites; Opry Square Dancers
8:30: Bill Anderson (host); Jesse McReynolds; Charles Esten

2nd show
9:30: John Conlee (host); William Michael Morgan; Mike Snider
10:00: Ricky Skaggs (host); Connie Smith; The Whites
10:30: Larry Gatlin & The Gatlin Brothers (host); Jessie James Decker; Opry Square Dancers
11:00: Bill Anderson (host); Jesse McReynolds; Charles Esten

That comes out to 8 Opry members for each of the 3 shows. 

And now, here is the posted Grand Ole Opry line-up from five years ago, the weekend of December 10 & 11, 2010:
Friday December 10
7:00: Jeannie Seely (host); Jimmy C Newman; Emily West
7:30: The Whites (host); Ray Pillow; Del McCoury Band
8:15: Jim Ed Brown (host); Jack Greene; Jimmy Wayne
8:45: Mel Tillis (host); Bobby Osborne & The Rocky Top X-Press; Darryl Singletary

Saturday December 11
1st show
7:00: Jeannie Seely (host); Jimmy C Newman; Del McCoury Band
7:30: Mike Snider (host); Jean Shepard; Heidi Newfield
8:00: Jim Ed Brown (host); Jan Howard; Chuck Mead; Opry Square Dancers
8:30: Emmylou Harris (host); Chris Hillman & Herb Pedersen; The Low Anthem

2nd show
9:30: Jeannie Seely (host); Jimmy C Newman; Del McCoury Band
10:00: Mike Snider (host); Jim Ed Brown; Heidi Newfield
10:30: Jean Shepard (host); Jesse McReynolds; Chuck Mead; Opry Square Dancers
11:00: Emmylou Harris (host); Chris Hillman & Herb Pedersen; The Low Anthem

Now from ten years ago, the weekend of December 9 & 10, 2005: 

Friday December 9
1st show
6:30: Steve Wariner (host); Connie Smith; Jack Greene
7:00: Jimmy Dickens (host); Rockie Lynne; Mike Snider
7:30: Ricky Skaggs (host); Jean Shepard; The Whites
8:00: Porter Wagoner (host); Billy Walker; Jim Ed Brown; Marty Stuart
8:30: Bill Anderson (host); Mountain Heart; Diamond Rio

2nd show
9:30: Jimmy Dickens (host); Mike Snider; Marty Stuart
10:00: Steve Wariner (host); Bobby Osborne & The Rocky Top X-Press; Connie Smith; Diamond Rio
10:30: Ricky Skaggs (host); The Whites
11:00: Bill Anderson (host); Jean Shepard; Rockie Lynne
11:30: Jim Ed Brown (host); Billy Walker; Mountain Heart

Saturday December 10
1st show
6:30: Jimmy Dickens (host); Connie Smith; Ray Scott
7:00: Mike Snider (host); Jan Howard; Jack Greene; Alecia Nugent
7:30: Jean Shepard (host); Jimmy C Newman; Mountain Heart
8:00: Porter Wagoner (host); Jesse McReynolds & The Virginia Boys; Mel McDaniel; Opry Square Dancers
8:30: Bill Anderson (host); Jeannie Seely; T. Graham Brown

2nd show
9:30: Jimmy Dickens (host); Mike Snider; Ray Scott
10:00: Jim Ed Brown (host); Connie Smith; Mountain Heart
10:30: Jean Shepard (host); Jimmy C Newman; Alecia Nugent; Opry Square Dancers
11:00: Bill Anderson (host); Mel McDaniel
11:30: Jeannie Seely (host); Jesse McReynolds & The Virginia Boys; T. Graham Brown

For this week's featured line-up, here is the running order from 39 years ago, Saturday December 11, 1976:

1st show
6:30: Mrs Grissoms
Justin Tubb (host): Lonesome 7-7203
Willis Brothers: Wild Side of Life
Justin Tubb: Take A Letter Miss Gray

6:45: Rudy's
Wilburn Brothers: Country Kind of Feelings
Jimmy C Newman: Cry, Cry Darling
Stu Phillips: Have A Nice Day
Wilburn Brothers: I'll Fly Away

7:00: Shoney's
Porter Wagoner (host): On A Highway Headed South
Skeeter Davis: It Wasn't God Who Made Honky Tonk Angels
Jim & Jesse: The Magic Little Garden
Ernie Ashworth: The Shamrock Motel
Skeeter Davis: I Forgot More Than You'll Every Know
Jim & Jesse: Paradise
Porter Wagoner: When Leah Jane Would Sing/Cold Hard Facts of Life/The Carroll County Accident/Green Green Grass of Home

7:30: Standard Candy
Roy Acuff (host): Wabash Cannonball
Lonzo & Oscar: Crawdad Song
Crook Brothers/Tennessee Travelers: Gray Eagle
Oswald: Mountain Dew
Lonzo & Oscar: American Trilogy
Roy Acuff: Walk A Mile In Your Neighbor's Shoes

8:00: Martha White
Bill Monroe (host): Christmas Times A' Comin
Wilma Lee Cooper: I Don't Care, If Tomorrow Never Comes
Billy Grammer: My Life's Been A Pleasure
Marion Worth: Just A Little Lovin'
Bill Monroe: My Louisiana Love
Wilma Lee & Stoney Cooper: Mathew 24
Billy Grammer: Jingle Bells/White Christmas

8:30: Stephens
Hank Snow (host): Merry Go Round of Love
Jeanne Pruett: Satin Sheets
Bill Carlisle: Hand Me Down My Walking Cane
Fruit Jar Drinkers: Leather Britches
Jeanne Pruett: Sweet Sweetheart
Bill Carlisle: I'm Moving
Kayton Roberts: Harbor Lights
Hank Snow: I Don't Hurt Anymore

2nd show
9:30: Kellogg's
Jimmy C Newman (host): Jambalaya
Wilburn Brothers: There Must Be More to Love Than This
Willis Brothers: Buying Popcorn
Ernie Ashworth: The Shamrock Motel
Jimmy C Newman: Diggy Liggy Lo
Wilburn Brothers: Knoxville Girl
Willis Brothers: Cool Water

10:00: Fender
Porter Wagoner (host): The Funky Grass Band
Skeeter Davis: Crazy Arms
Stu Phillips: It Is No Secret
Porter Wagoner: Happy Birthday Jesus/On A Highway Headed South

10:15: Union 76
Roy Acuff (host): Cottonfields/Night Train to Memphis
Jim & Jesse: My Time is Running Out/Paradise
Roy Acuff: I Saw the Light

10:30: Trailblazer
Bill Monroe (host): Blue Moon of Kentucky
Lonzo & Oscar: When I Stop Dreaming
Justin Tubb: You Nearly Lose Your Mind
Bill Monroe: Uncle Pen

10:45: Beech-Nut
Billy Grammer (host): Detroit City
Wilma Lee & Stoney Cooper: Where Is America Going
Crook Brothers/Tennessee Travelers: (?)
Billy Grammer: I'm Letting You Go

11:00: Coca-Cola
Hank Snow (host): Golden Rocket
Marion Worth: Shake Me; I Rattle
Fruit Jar Drinkers: Katy Hill
Hank Snow: The Next Voice You Hear
Marion Worth: Just A Little Lovin'
Hank Snow: Mary Ann Regrets

11:30: Elm Hill
Marty Robbins (host): Don't Worry
Jeanne Pruett: Sweet Sweetheart/Satin Sheets
Bill Carlisle: Same Old Tale the Crow Told Me/Worried Man Blues
Marty Robbins: Ribbon of Darkness/Love Me
Bobby Sykes: Sunday Down in Tennessee
Marty Robbins: After the Storm/My Woman; My Woman; My Wife/Swinging the Blues/Among My Souvenirs

There you have it. A couple of segments that were kind of 'thin' that night, specifically the first Roy Acuff segment and the second Hank Snow segment, but all in all, a very nice night at the Opry in 1976. No special guest stars, just a nice group of Opry members. 

Enjoy the Opry this weekend!!!


  1. Why the hell sings the Gatlins nothing from their new Gospel CD? Always Houston, All the Gold... and American with a Remington...:-) So talented, but not much fantasy fot the Opry audience.

  2. Was that Christmas recitation that Bill Anderson performed on Tuesday (12-8-15) something new? I had never heard it. You could feel the audience come to their feet through the speakers while listening! Would love to find the lyrics to that. Rog

    1. I know he did it last year as I was at the Opry in December and it received the same reaction as last night. I also believe at one time he had something on his website with the words listed. So while it is newer, it is not completely new.

  3. Yes, Bill has more often something special in his program, some specials... but this past Tuesday I was really surprised! The Gatlins had some Christmas songs on their program, really stunning performances!! That was what I (maybe we) need, something new sometimes. I live about 5000 Miles from Nashville, but I hear every second from the Grand ole opry shows on WSM when Larry and Bill are there (and Mel, Vince and some others too:-)....

  4. I think the Bill Anderson song or recitation is "Still Believing in Christmas" and part of it gets at the PC world today tries to keep us from saying it is Christmas and instead call it the "Winter Holiday" or something. It usually goes over well with the Opry crowd that is still mostly conservative and traditional leaning. And yes, it is available on his website this year as Christmas cards.

    I didn't get to hear the show last night but will try to listen to the archive later.

    Knightsville, IN

  5. I just wanted to mention that country music singer Bonnie Lou passed away in a Cincinnati, Ohio nursing home Tuesday morning. She was 91.

    Bonnie Lou was born Mary Joan Kath in Towanda, Illinois. She began playing the fiddle and guitar as a child and by the age of 16 she was appearing on local radio stations in the Midwest. A year later she was signed to perform on a barn dance show, the Brush Creek Follies, where she was known as Sally Carson with her group The Rhythm Rangers. Known for her yodeling, she was later dubbed Bonnie Lou and was featured on a show that became the Midwestern Hayride, a country and western radio program on WLW in Cincinnati. This led to tours and several performances on the Grand Ole Opry.

    She was a popular radio performer thought the 1940s. In the 1950s, she recorded for several different record companies and had several Top 10 country hits including "Tennessee Wig Walk" and "Seven Lonely Days,' each of which sold about 750,000 copies. Later she began recording rockabilly. Her first rock n' roll record "Daddy-O" went to No. 14 on the Billboard chart. She was later elected to the Rockabilly Hall of Fame.

    When WLW transitioned into television, Bonnie Lou co-hosted and sang on a popular local show, the Paul Dixon Show, and was part of the televised version of Midwestern Hayride, which was later broadcast on NBC. She appeared on the show until it ended in 1972. She later hosted Six Star Ranch on WLW radio and in the 1980s she hosted a weekend country music show while continuing to perform in public. Since 2000, her recordings have been available for download.

  6. I don't remember seeing her on the Midwestern Hayride but I was pretty young when I vaguely remember wathching it. I do remember Kenny Price being on it. WTTV4 in Indianapolis/Bloomington must have carried it. Nat Hill can probably give me some insight to that!

    Knightsville, IN

    1. Here's a clip of Bonnie Lou on the Midwestern Hayride. What a great singer she was!!

      Anonymous in Kingman

  7. Regarding the Bonnie Lou clip, it might actually be from WLWT's "The Paul Dixon Show." She was co-host for 20 years. Just found a clip of the Midwestern Hayride on YouTube, however it's in really poor shape. - Anonymous in Kingman

  8. Jim;
    Nat Hill has slept since then!
    I do remember the Midwestern Hayride, especially Kenny Price. I seem to remember Bonnie Lou being on the show as well.
    But the "star (host)" and what station it was on I simply can't remember. Google reveals the star must have been Paul Dixon, and the station WLWI ,(channel 13). That sounds right, because I remember the show came out of Cincinnati, and the WLW stations were Cincinnati based. All I can remember about Paul Dixon was that he wasn't country enough to suit me. Neither was Bonnie Lou, to be honest. She was a very good singer, but not enough twang for me.
    But the show often had real country stars as guests, and I always enjoyed Kenny Price.