Sunday, 22 December 2019

Gig Review: Live At The Nashville Grand Ole Opry


Live Review Of: 
at the Grand Ole Opry, Nashville

The Grand Ole Opry goes out live on WSM radio, which means each act – no matter how prestigious, gets a fifteen-minute three-song set, before announcer Eddie Stubbs reads out ads for the ‘Boot Barn’ or the ‘Cracker Barrel’ Old Country Store – ‘Stop And Eat, Then Tap Your Feet’. But as opener Connie Smith enthuses, the Opry is ‘a magical place’ with the dust from Hank Williams’ boots ground into its stage-boards. Unlike most other music genres, it reveres its heritage. Mac Wiseman is pushed onstage in a wheelchair – born 23 May 1925, he’s promoting his new CD ‘Songs From My Mother’s Hand’. To standing ovation he does the maudlin bluegrass of “My Mother Called My Name In Prayer” with hillbilly fiddle, stand-up bass and mandolin, before being joined by Vince Gill for his 1951 hit “Tis Sweet To Be Remembered”. Yet he’s followed by bright legally-blonde RaeLynn in tiny black micro-dress, just turned twenty, she teeters back on impossible heels to take a with-audience selfie. But don’t dare underestimate her. Her Girls Just Wanna Have Fun “I’ll Live When I’m Young”, the Pop-catchy “God Made Girls” and parental break-up heartbreaker “Love Triangle” demonstrate intimidating command. And, despite superficials, both artists share an ongoing continuity.

There’s a ‘Dare To Dance’ talent spot, sponsored by Dollar General (‘Save Time. Save Money. Every Day’), Call-outs to US Army Vets, and Linda from Houston competes in a ‘By The Decades’ game – Vince Gill tips her the answers. Then Alabama Shakes close with a politely received jarring set. Less country, more blues and soul-attack with vocalist Brittany Howard stabbing the air for emphasis up against Stax-swamp rhythms and Steve Cropper-style fret-runs. A massively powerful “I Still Aint Got What I Want” is impassioned slow-burn testifying, incorporating extreme volume-shifts. Elvis Presley played the Opry once. He was too edgy for them. He had to wait until 1998 before he was officially accepted into the C&W Hall of Fame. Yet it’s encouraging that the Opry, while honouring its living tradition, is still open to more confrontational acts. Brittany thanks the Opry for the warmth of its welcome. 

Published in:
‘R2: ROCK ‘N’ REEL’ 
Vol.2 No.49 Jan-February (UK – January 2015)

1 comment:

Erlinda Kaes said...

My husband and I have been having lots of problems living together, he never gives me attention or makes me happy because he has fallen in love with another woman outside our marriage. I tried my best to make sure that my husband leaves this woman but the more I talk to him about it the more he makes me feel sad and unhappy, My marriage started leading to divorce because he no longer gives me attention. I wanted to forget him but i love him and didn't want to lose him. We have been married for years and he is all I could call a true best friend and best in all, the man that handles my problems perfectly, the man that makes sacrifices for my happiness. I wanted him back in my life badly and I was so confused. My Friends told me to buy books about relationships, so I went online for relationship books while I came across a spell caster called Dr Emu. I read testimonies and reviews about him so I contacted him immediately, explained my problems to him. Same day , he casted a spell for me and assured me for 2 days that my husband will return to me and to my greatest surprise the third day my husband came knocking on my door and begged for forgiveness. I am so happy that my love is back again and not only that, we are about to get married again, he proposed. I wouldn't stop talking about him. Contact him today if you need his help via email: and you will see that your problem will be solved without any delay. Website: