Thursday, August 25, 2016

Grand Ole Opry 8/26 & 8/27

As we look forward to another weekend at the Grand Ole Opry, I did want to pass along an update regarding former Opry member Holly Dunn. As was reported in April, Holly was diagnosed with ovarian cancer and was undergoing chemotherapy treatments. This past week, the report was that Holly's cancer has been termed as very aggressive, resulting in additional tumors. She is still undergoing chemotherapy treatments and has asked for prayers and thoughts from her fans. In the store, Holly admitted that the survival odds for this type of cancer were not very good. At the age of 59, she is much too young. As I have written before, I always enjoyed Holly when she was on the Opry and personally I thought she received a raw deal when her membership was terminated. 

Now to this week's shows and the line-ups. The Friday Night Opry has seven Opry members scheduled, which include Jeannie Seely, Mike Snider, Riders In The Sky, Connie Smith, Bobby Osborne, Ricky Skaggs and The Whites.  Each of the five guest artists scheduled have appeared on the Opry previously and that list includes William Michael Morgan, Sarah Darling, Craig Campbell, Brett Young and Easton Corbin. If you haven't heard William Michael Morgan before, take a listen. A real nice country voice and for William, this will be his 12th Opry appearance of the year. 

Saturday night's Grand Ole Opry will have six Opry members set to appear. Connie Smith, Mike Snider, Riders In The Sky and The Whites, each of whom are also scheduled on Friday night, will also appear on Saturday, joined by Jesse McReynolds and Larry Gatlin & The Gatlin Brothers. Guest artists include Shelley Skidmore, Trent Harmon, Chuck Mead & His Grassy Knoll Boys, Darryl Worley, Mountain Heart, and the very talented Brandy Clark. For those who will be at the Opry on Saturday, Mountain Heart will be meeting fans and signing their new CD after the show. 

Friday August 26
7:00: Jeannie Seely (host); William Michael Morgan; Mike Snider
7:30: Riders In The Sky (host); Sarah Darling; Craig Campbell
8:15: Connie Smith (host); Bobby Osborne & The Rocky Top X-Press; Brett Young
8:45: Ricky Skaggs (host); The Whites; Easton Corbin

Saturday August 27
7:00: Connie Smith (host); Shelley Skidmore; Mike Snider
7:30: Riders In The Sky (host); Trent Harmon; Chuck Mead & His Grassy Knoll Boys
8:15: The Whites (host); Jesse McReynolds; Darryl Worley; Opry Square Dancers
8:45: Larry Gatlin & The Gatlin Brothers (host); Mountain Heart; Brandy Clark

For Trent Harmon, this will be the Grand Ole Opry debut Trent gained national fame by winning the fifteenth and final season of American Idol and currently records for Big Machine records. He is from Mississippi and grew up singing in his church. For his final song on American Idol, he sang "Falling" which was co-written by Grand Ole Opry member and American Idol judge Keith Urban. That single peaked at #27 on the American country charts. His 2nd single, "There's A Girl" was released in July. 

And now, here is the posted Grand Ole Opry line-up from five years ago, the weekend of August 26 & 27, 2011: 

Friday August 26
7:00: John Conlee (host); Mike Snider; Kip Moore
7:30: Jimmy Dickens (host); Jesse McReynolds; Joe Diffie
8:15: Bill Anderson (host); The Whites; Gene Watson
8:45: Mel Tillis (host); Bobby Osborne & The Rocky Top X-Press; Pam Tillis

Saturday August 27
7:00: John Conlee (host); Jeannie Seely; George Hamilton IV; Tommy Emmanuel
7:30: Jimmy Dickens (host); Jimmy C Newman; Jimmy Wayne
8:15: Mike Snider (host); Jack Greene; Sierra Hull; Opry Square Dancers
8:45: Bill Anderson (host); Riders In The Sky; Clay Walker

Now from ten years ago, the weekend of August 25 & 26, 2006: 

Friday August 25
8:00: Jeannie Seely (host); Jimmy C Newman; Jennifer Hanson
8:30: Jimmy Dickens (host); Connie Smith; Rockie Lynne
9:00: John Conlee (host); Jean Shepard; Bryan White
9:30: Lorrie Morgan (host); George Hamilton IV; Jim Ed Brown

Saturday August 26
1st show
6:30: Jimmy Dickens (host); Connie Smith; Rockie Lynne; Jack Greene
7:00: Lorrie Morgan (host); Lonestar; Mark Chesnutt; Randy Owen
8:00: Hal Ketchum (host); Jan Howard; John Conlee; Jean Shepard; Opry Square Dancers
8:30: Pam Tillis (host); Carolyn Dawn Johnson; Vince Gill

2nd show
9:30: Jimmy Dickens (host); Connie Smith; Pam Tillis
10:00: Lorrie Morgan (host); Jack Greene; Randy Owen
10:30: Hal Ketchum (host); Charlie Walker; Bobby Osborne & The Rocky Top X-Press; Opry Square Dancers
11:00: Vince Gill (host); Jean Shepard; John Conlee; Mark Chesnutt
11:30: Jeannie Seely (host); Rockie Lynne; Carolyn Dawn Johnson

Finally, from 25 years ago, Saturday August 24, 1991: 

1st show
6:30: Porter Wagoner (host); Ernie Ashworth
6:45: Jim & Jesse (host); Skeeter Davis; Bill Carlisle
7:00: Del Reeves (host); Billy Grammer; Jean Shepard; Dottie West; David Houston
7:30: Jimmy C Newman (host); The McCarters; Clinton Gregory
8:00: Roy Acuff (host); Stonewall Jackson; Connie Smith; Opry Square Dance Band; Melvin Sloan Dancers
8:30: Hank Snow (host); George Hamilton IV; Roy Drusky; Charlie Walker; Johnson Mountain Boys

2nd show
9:30: Porter Wagoner (host); Connie Smith; Ernie Ashworth; Billy Grammer; Jeannie Seely
10:00: Del Reeves (host); Skeeter Davis
10:15: Roy Acuff (host); Wilma Lee Cooper
10:30: Jimmy C Newman (host); Jean Shepard
10:45: Charlie Walker (host); Clinton Gregory; Opry Square Dance Band; Melvin Sloan Dancers
11:00: Hank Snow (host); Jim & Jesse; Dottie West; Justin Tubb; The McCarters
11:30: George Hamilton IV (host); Stonewall Jackson; Roy Drusky; Johnson Mountain Boys

What made that particular night so special was that it was the final Grand Ole Opry appearance for Dottie West. What is interesting is that Dottie was not originally scheduled for the Opry that night but instead was supposed to be at a show in Ohio. However, that show apparently did not take place and Dottie did the Opry instead. 

Dorothy Marie Marsh was born on October 11, 1932 in McMinnville, Tennessee. After college, Dottie moved to Cleveland, Ohio and began appearing on local television. Several years late, she moved to Nashville where she became friends with Patsy Cline. Along with Patsy, and Loretta Lynn, Dottie is considered one of the most influential female groundbreaking artists of that period. In 1965 Dottie had her first hit, "Here Comes My Baby Back Again" which reached the Top 10 and won Dottie a Grammy Award for Best Female Country Vocal Performance. The hits continued throughout the 1960's. In the 1970's, she again attained fame for singing "Country Sunshine" which was written by Dottie and was a theme song for Coca-Cola. Later in the decade, she teamed with Kenny Rogers for a number of duets that earned Dottie her first #1 records. In 1980, she reached #1 for the first time as a solo artist with "A Lesson In Leavin.'" Later in the 1980's she appeared on stage and in movies. Sad to say but later in the decade the years were not kind to Dottie as she had financial problems which included a large tax bill with the IRS that resulted in an auction of her personal items, including her home. 

The following Friday night, Dottie was on her way to the Friday Night Opry when she had car problems and a neighbor gave Dottie a ride to the Opry. As they were entering the Opryland area, the car, which was traveling at a high rate of speed, went off the road. The resulting crash injured Dottie, from which she did not recover, passing away on September 4, 1991 at the age of 58. 

In the course of Dottie's career, she had over 70 singles, with 7 of those reaching #1 on the charts. When you look at her career, with the numerous hit single records, her duet work with Kenny Rogers, her songwriting, and her mentoring to such artists as Larry Gatlin and Steve Wariner, Dottie West truly had a Hall of Fame career. Sadly, she has not been elected despite efforts by her family and friends for her to achieve that honor. 

Here is the detailed running order from Saturday August 24, 1991, the night that Dottie West made her final appearance on the Grand Ole Opry: 

1st show
6:30: Bonanza
Porter Wagoner (host): Company's Coming
Ernie Ashworth: Shamrock Motel
Porter Wagoner: Green, Green Grass of Home/Ol' Slewfoot

6:45: Country Music Hall of Fame
Jim & Jesse (host): Dream of Me
Skeeter Davis: The End of the World
Bill Carlisle: Is Zat You Myrtle
Jim & Jesse: A Flower in the Desert

7:00: Shoney's
Del Reeves (host): Girl on the Billboard
Billy Grammer: Steel Guitar Rag
Jean Shepard: If You Can Live With It
Dottie West: I Can't Help It
David Houston: I'll Take You Home Again, Kathleen
Del Reeves: Good Time Charlies

7:30: Standard Candy
Jimmy C Newman (host): La Cajun Band
McCarters: No Where to Go But Up/If I Could Stop Loving You
Clinton Gregory: If It Weren't For Country Music I'd Go Crazy/Satisfy Me & I'll Satisfy You
Jimmy C Newman: Colinda/The Ring That Shines

8:00: Martha White
Roy Acuff (host): Wabash Cannonball
Stonewall Jackson: Side-Steppin the Blues/Muddy Water
Connie Smith: Did We Have to Come This Far to Say Goodbye/Louisiana Man
Opry Square Dance Band/Melvin Sloan Dancers: Bill Cheatham
Roy Acuff: I Can't Help It

8:30: Opryland USA
Hank Snow (host): Tangled Mind
George Hamilton IV: Forever Young
Roy Drusky: Too Old to Die Young
Charlie Walker: Pick Me Up On Your Way Down
Johnson Mountain Boys: Maybe You'll Change Your Mind
Hank Snow: I'm Glad I Got to See You Once Again

2nd show
9:30: Dollar General Store
Porter Wagoner (host): Ol Slewfoot
Connie Smith: The Key's in the Mailbox
Ernie Ashworth: Talk Back Trembling Lips
Billy Grammer: Steel Guitar Rag/Sentimental Journey/Gotta Travel On
Jeannie Seely: Too Far Gone
Porter Wagoner: I'll Go Down Swinging

10:00: Little Debbie
Del Reeves (host): Six Days on the Road/Truck Driving Man
Skeeter Davis: He Says the Same Things to Me
Del Reeves: Don't You Ever Get Tired of Hurting Me

10:15: Tennessee Pride/Sunbeam
Roy Acuff (host): Just A Friend
Wilma Lee Cooper: Gathering Flowers From the Hillside
Dan Kelly: Sally Goodin

10:30: Pet Milk
Jimmy C Newman (host): Pistol Packin' Mama
Jean Shepard: Days of Wine & Roses
Jimmy C Newman: Down on the Bayou

10:45: B.C. Powder
Charlie Walker (host): Right or Wrong
Clinton Gregory: Satisfy Me & I'll Satisfy You/Nobody's Darling But Mine
Opry Square Dance Band/Melvin Sloan Dancers: Golden Slippers
Charlie Walker: Pick Me Up on Your Way Down

11:00: Coca-Cola
Hank Snow (host): Geisha Girl
Jim & Jesse: When I Dream About the Southland
Dottie West: Here Comes My Baby
Justin Tubb: Keep Me From Blowing Away
McCarters: Every Time You Leave
Bill Carlisle: Gone Home
Hank Snow: It Kinda Reminds Me of Me

11:30: Creamette
George Hamilton IV (host): Early Morning Rain
Stonewall Jackson: Side-Steppin the Blues
Roy Drusky: I Really Don't Want to Know
Johnston Mountain Boys: Duncan & Brady/Springtime in Glory
George Hamilton IV: Life's Railway to Heaven

I hope everyone enjoys the Opry this weekend!!!


  1. Byron:
    There's one group I don't recognize from the August 24, show. Who are the McCarters?

    Thank you (also like the new look of your page),

    Anonymous in Kingman

    1. The McCarters were three sisters: Jennifer, Lisa and Theresa. From what I can see, they only released 2 albums, "The Gift" in 1988 and "Better Be Home Soon" in the early 1990s. They apparently are still active, based on looking at their Facebook page, although not doing much. They are from Eastern Tennessee.

    2. Thanks for the info, Byron! - Anonymous in Kingman

  2. Fitting that the song, "Here comes my Baby", was Dottie West's last performance. As Acuff would say, it's the one that brought her there.
    Dottie did have a Hall of Fame career. At some point I think she will be inducted. But it will conveniently come on a "tie" year or after the CMA finally gives the categories a make over.

    1. David, not sure if you saw today's Nashville Tennessean and the article about Dottie West. The Hall of Fame was mentioned prominently in the article. Also today's Tennessean had a slide show titled 12 Surprising Country Music Hall of Fame Omissions." The list includes Dottie West, The Stanley Brothers, The Maddox Brothers and Rose, Johnny Horton, Gram Parsons, Lloyd Green, Wanda Jackson, Jerry Reed, Johnny Paycheck, Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, Ray Charles and Melba Montgomery. Interesting names that they have come up with.

  3. Saw the same article Byron.
    I really liked the folks they named.
    There are far more entertainers who belong in the Hall than there are openings.