Thursday, July 26, 2018

Grand Ole Opry 7/27 & 7/28

Before getting to the Grand Ole Opry line-ups for this weekend, there are a couple of items to pass along.

 First, Grand Ole Opry members Ricky Skaggs and Tom T. Hall have been elected to the Bluegrass Music Hall of Fame. The announcement was made in Nashville on Wednesday. Tom T. was elected along with his late wife Dixie, both of whom were very involved in bluegrass music. Its been a big year for both Ricky and Tom T. As earlier this year, Ricky was voted into the Country Music Hall of Fame, while Tom T. was elected to the Bill Monroe Bluegrass Hall of Fame at Bean Blossom. Ricky, who is scheduled for the Friday Night Opry this week, and Tom T., who is now retired, join a very small group that have been elected to both the Country and Bluegrass halls. Congratulations to both.

Secondly, last week Jeanne Pruett celebrated her 45th year as member of the Grand Ole Opry, joining the cast on July 21, 1973. This Saturday, Jeanne, who is now retired, will be at the Grand Ole Opry House signing copies of her new book "Satin Sheets: I Remember" following the show. It will be interesting to see if her friend, Opry member Jeannie Seely, will introduce her on the Opry stage. If you remember, when Jeanne celebrated her 40th anniversary as an Opry member, Jeannie was able to get her to sing a chorus of Satin Sheets. Let's see what happens this week.

As to the Grand Ole Opry this weekend, as mentioned, Ricky Skaggs is set for the Friday Night Opry, to be joined by Opry members The Whites, Dailey & Vincent, and one of the newest members Chris Young. In fact, Chris gets the entire last segment to himself. Jeannie Seely, as mentioned, is scheduled for Saturday's Grand Ole Opry, joined by Opry members Connie Smith, Bobby Osborne, and making it a two show weekend, The Whites. That makes four Opry members each night.

Two guest artists, Mark Wills and Jeanne Robertson, are scheduled for both nights this weekend. joined on Friday by William Michael Morgan, T Graham Brown, Rhett Walker Band and RaeLynn. Saturday night, Mark and Jeanne will be joined by Waylon Payne, Ashley Campbell, Mandy Barnett and Charlie McCoy. 10 acts for each show in total and no Mike Snider for the 2nd week in a row.

Friday July 27
7:00: Ricky Skaggs (host); William Michael Morgan; T Graham Brown
7:30: The Whites (host); Mark Wills; Rhett Walker Band
8:15: Dailey & Vincent (host); Jeanne Robertson; RaeLynn
8:45: Chris Young

Saturday July 28
7:00: Connie Smith (host); Waylon Payne; Bobby Osborne & The Rocky Top X-Press
7:30: The Whites (host); Ashley Campbell; Mark Wills
8:15: Jeannie Seely (host); Jeanne Robertson; Opry Square Dancers; Mandy Barnett; Charlie McCoy

And now, here is the posted Grand Ole Opry from 10 years ago, the 4th weekend in July 2008:

Friday July 25
8:00: Jeannie Seely (host); Jimmy C Newman; Michael Cleveland & Flamekeeper
8:30: Jim Ed Brown (host); Jesse McReynolds & The Virginia Boys; Jean Shepard; The Time Jumpers
9:00: Ricky Skaggs (host); The Whites; Rebecca Lynn Howard
9:30: Marty Stuart (host); Connie Smith; Gene Watson

Saturday July 26
1st show
7:00: Jimmy C Newman (host); Connie Smith; Jennifer Hanson
7:30: Jeannie Seely (host); Bobby Osborne & The Rocky Top X-Press; Suzy Bogguss
8:00: Jean Shepard (host); Jan Howard; The Isaacs; Opry Square Dancers
8:30: Jim Ed Brown (host); The Whites; The Time Jumpers

2nd show
9:30: Jimmy C Newman (host); Connie Smith; Jennifer Hanson
10:00: Jeannie Seely (host); Bobby Osborne & The Rocky Top X-Press; Suzy Bogguss
10:30: Jean Shepard (host); Jesse McReynolds & The Virginia Boys; The Isaacs; Opry Square Dancers
11:00: Jim Ed Brown (host); The Whites; The Time Jumpers

Now from 50 years ago, Saturday July 27, 1968:

1st show
6:30: Willis Brothers (host); Ernie Ashworth; Norma Jean
6:45: Jack Greene (host); The Four Guys
7:00: Hank Locklin (host); Tex Ritter; Del Wood; Cousin Jody; Hugh X. Lewis; Martha Carson
7:30: Bill Anderson (host); Stringbean; Johnny & Jonie Mosby; David Rogers; Crook Brothers
8:00: Flatt and Scruggs (host); Bob Luman; Dottie West; Bill Carlisle
8:30: Ernest Tubb (host); Charlie Louvin; Leroy Van Dyke; Fruit Jar Drinkers; Billy Parker

2nd show
9:30: Bill Anderson (host); Willis Brothers; Ernie Ashworth; Norma Jean;
10:00: Jack Greene (host); Stringbean; Johnny & Jonie Mosby
10:15: Charlie Louvin (host); The Four Guys; Dottie West
10:30: Bob Luman (host); Del Wood
10:45: Ernest Tubb (host); Leroy Van Dyke; Crook Brothers
11:00: Hank Locklin (host); Tex Ritter; Martha Carson; Fruit Jar Drinkers; Sam McGee
11:30: Marty Robbins (host); Bill Carlisle; Lorene Mann; Cousin Jody; Don Winters

There were a couple of names from that night that many have not heard in a while, two of which were Johnny and Jonie Mosby.

Johnny Mosby was born in Fort Smith, Arkansas in 1933, while Janice Irene Shields was born in Van Nuys, California. The couple met in California when she auditioned for a spot in Johnny's orchestra, and they were married in 1958.

They first recorded for Columbia Records, with their first single "Don't Call Me from a Honky Tonk" released in 1963. The single went to No. 13 on the country charts, and that was followed by "Trouble in My Arms" which reached No. 12. In 1965, the couple released "Mr. and Mrs. Country Music," also on Columbia, followed by "The New Sweethearts of Country," which was on the Starday Record label.

From 1967 to 1972 they recorded for Capital Records. Their next Top 20 singles were "Just Hold My Hand" and "I'm Leavin' It Up to You." In 1971, Jonie released a solo single "I've Been There," however it reached only the bottom half of the country charts. That same year, the couple separated and the duo ended.

Another artist, who appeared on the first show that night was David Rogers. Between 1968 and 1984, he had 37 singles on the Billboard Charts, with two of those, "Need You" and "Loving You Has Changed My Life," reaching the Top 10. He recorded on the Columbia, Atlantic, United Artists and Republic labels. David, who was born in 1936, passed away in 1993.

Several weeks ago, I highlighted the career of the Glaser Brothers. As mentioned, after their breakup in the 1970s, the brothers reunited and had a brief resurrection of their careers. In 1981, now under the name Tompall & The Glaser Brothers, they enjoyed chart success with "Lovin' Her Was Easier," written by Hall of Fame member Kris Kristofferson.

On Saturday July 30, 1983, the brothers guested on the Grand Ole Opry, appearing on Hank Snow's segment during the 1st show and George Hamilton IV's on the 2nd show. Here is the line-up from that night:

1st show
6:30: Ray Pillow (host); Wilma Lee Cooper
6:45: Billy Walker (host); Skeeter Davis
7:00: Jack Greene (host); Jeanne Pruett; Billy Grammer; Teddy Wilburn
7:30: Bill Anderson (host); Justin Tubb; Charlie Louvin; Stonewall Jackson; Crook Brothers; Stoney Mountain Cloggers
8:00: Roy Acuff (host); Vic Willis Trio; Bill Carlisle; George Hamilton IV: Connie Smith
8:30: Hank Snow (host); The Four Guys; David Houston; Tompall & The Glaser Brothers; Fruit Jar Drinkers

2nd show
9:30: Bill Anderson (host); The Four Guys; Skeeter Davis; Ray Pillow; Wilma Lee Cooper
10:00: Billy Walker (host); Jeanne Pruett
10:15: Jack Greene (host); Billy Walker
10:30: Roy Acuff (host); Charlie Louvin; Teddy Wilburn
10:45: Stonewall Jackson (host); Connie Smith; Crook Brothers; Stoney Mountain Cloggers
11:00: Hank Snow (host); David Houston; Fruit Jar Drinkers; Justin Tubb; Kirk McGee
11:30: George Hamilton IV (host); Vic Willis Trio; Bill Carlisle; Tompall & The Glaser Brothers

There you have it for this week. As always, I hope everyone enjoys the Opry this weekend!!


  1. CHRIS YOUNG! As Eddie Stubbs says, "Are there any questions!" That, is as real as it's possible to get!

  2. No, Chris Scruggs' 15 minute show after the Friday Night Opry is as real as it is ever going to get again !!!!!!!!!!! A very must listen to for traditional Country Music fans !!!!!!!! from Flushing, Michigan Dashmann

  3. I really think Mandy Barnett could sound awesome singing the phone book. Great job tonight Mandy. Don't know why Mandy isn't a Grand Opry Member...Bob

  4. and Byron you predicted it - Jeannie Seeley had Jeanne Pruett come on stage - to plug her book - I still do not understand why these "retired" members are not really retired. She admitted she can no longer sing.

  5. Anon, Jeanne Pruett offered to retire from membership to make room for someone else and management said no. I'm not sure what else she could do!

    Bob, you're absolutely right about Mandy Barnett.

  6. Barbara Mandrell was the first Opry member to retire and ask Opry management to allow her to remain an Opry member. That set the stage for the others who have followed: Ricky Van Shelton, Jeanne Pruett, Tom T. Hall, Jan Howard, Stu Phillips and it would appear, Stonewall Jackson (of the current cast members). Of course, Holly Dunn retired but then a couple of years later, Pete Fisher fired her.

    My opinion has been that if you retire from the business, that also means you retire from the Opry and your membership ends. That is what happened to an artist such as Cousin Jody, among others. But apparently times have changed and firing an artist, such as a Barbara Mandrell, would bring bad publicity to the Opry. On the other hand, management could just quietly allow them to go away on their own with maybe a little push.

  7. Byron - I agree with your opinion partially about retiring members, but I do think there is a big difference from people who retire from the business such as Barbara Mandrell, Holly Dunn, Ricky Van Shelton, Tom T. Hall and Jeanne Pruett (who should probably be dropped from the roster) versus members who do not perform because of age or health. I would argue that Jan Howard, Stonewall Jackson and Stu Phillips definitely should remain Opry members for all their MANY years of faithful support week after week of the show just as it would have been unreal to drop Hank Snow, Ernest Tubb, Minnie Pearl, Wilma Lee Cooper, Lester Flatt, Teddy Wilburn, Billy Grammer, Bill Monroe, Skeeter Davis, Jack Greene, or currently Loretta Lynn, and others who became too ill to continue peforming. My opinion is that Cousin Jody should have been allowed to continue as a member since it was his health that forced him to retire. When Lonzo and Oscar, Bobby Lord, Marion Worth, Margie Bowes, Melvin Sloan and the Stoney Mountain Cloggers retired, they left because they were no longer going to perform at an age when they could have performed without health or personal reasons. But then again, I think new Opry Management is giving some positive new direction about "Once an Opry Member, Always an Opry Member" in the case of Bobby Bare. Too bad that didn't/doesn't extend to Kitty & Johnny, Earl, Faron, Leroy VanDyke, Norma Jean, Jim Glaser, Doug Kershaw, Willie. In the end a more inclusive membership policy helps honor those who contributed to the show and doesn't hurt anything so long as the Opry continues to add new members that can carry on week after week.(oldtimeopry)

    1. What about an "emeritus" category for the retired and semi-retired members ? That way, you're still honoring them fully, but there's a distinction between those individuals and the active membership. Robert

    2. I do agree with you regarding those members who are unable to continue to perform due to their health. I should have stated my thoughts more clearly on that. And you are absolutely correct in your thinking. Nobody should be forced to give up their membership just because they are no longer able to perform.

      I think of the ones you name who were former members, much like Bobby Bare, the only one who is probably interested in rejoining the Opry would be Leroy Van Dyke. I have read where Leroy still feels he should be an Opry member as the letter he received from Ott Devine left some wiggle room (I have a copy of the letter).

      Norma Jean seems happy where she is at and doesn't get to Nashville much anymore. Jim Glaser is still performing but I haven't read anywhere that he has an interest in coming back. Time will tell.