The music was great, as was the entertaining chatter. Since the Opry is a live radio show, the stage set up is transparent to the audience, and there is a casual atmosphere. I found myself enjoying watching the stage musicians and vocalists who back up the performers. It is no small talent to accompany the range of musical styles that perform on the Opry stage, and these (mostly) men do so with only occasional recognition. They are an aging group, and I became aware of the rare opportunity I was witnessing. No other musical genre stages this type of gathering every week, and offers it to fans of that genre to witness and enjoy. What a gift we are given! It's no wonder that the world of country music feels so much like a family, and that performers are so accessible to fans.
Sunday, March 16, 2008
Mom is in town for a few days, and we had the happy coincidence while she is here of being invited to one of last night's shows at the Grand Ole Opry. I hadn't been in years, and neither Ken or Mom had ever been. It turned out to be a great night to be there, with a fabulous lineup: Vince Gill, Carrie Underwood, Little Big Town, Hal Ketchum and new country sensation group Lady Antebellum. There were also the usual appearances from more legendary artists: Jean Shepherd, Jeanie Sealy, The Whites, and a handful of others I can't recall. We also lucked out with a surprise visit from Randy Travis, who acknowledged that he hadn't been on the Opry stage in about six years. His presence there was to invite Carrie Underwood to become the latest member of the Opry, so it was a special night for that reason as well.