Welcome to our July newsletter…a month I’ve been looking forward to for quite some time.
I’m going to be busier this month than I’ve been in a long while, but it’s a good kind of busy with lots of exciting things going on.
Most of the excitement is built around my 60th Anniversary as a member of the Grand Ole Opry which we will be celebrating on Saturday night July 17th. Between now and then, I’ll be busy doing interviews and tending to all the million-and-one little details that go into making a milestone like this all that it can be. Many of you are coming in to help celebrate with us, and I’m looking forward to seeing you. We’ll be hosting a special meet ‘n greet for our fans and fan club members prior to the show that night.
I will be on the televised portion of the Opry which you can see on the Circle Network and in a variety of other places. For those who can’t be here, I’ll hope you’ll tune us in.
I’ve been back in the recording studio these past couple of weeks, and I’m excited about the new music we’ll be releasing later this year. I can’t share too many details just yet, but rest assured I have recorded a COUNTRY record like many of you have been asking for. Lots of fiddle and steel and country lyrics and melodies. A few of my country music friends have joined me on this new music, and I can’t wait for you to hear what we’ve done. If I sound excited it’s because I am.
And speaking of recordings, we are in the process of repackaging both our gospel and Christmas CDs, including a totally new design on the Christmas CD cover. We’ll be offering these with special pricing shortly. Stay tuned.
The next big event in Whisperville will come in early December when the Bill Anderson Exhibit will open at the Country Music Hall of Fame….and the process is underway full-blast. The HOF sent a big ol’ van loaded with cardboard boxes and bubble wrap out to my house and to my office yesterday, and they hauled off everything that wasn’t nailed down…stage clothes, guitars, record albums, song lyrics, pictures, awards, trophies. They are going to need a humongous exhibit space to display even half of what they gathered!
My friends at the University of Georgia library are pitching in to help, too, as they are bringing up some of the materials I gave them and lending them to the Hall for my display. That’s called “super cooperation.” Why can’t more people in this world get along like that??
June was both a happy and a sad month for me in that I lost a dear friend with the passing of Jim Bessman, a music journalist based in New York who wrote many nice articles about me over the years, and then the tragic house fire at the home of my buddy, Keith Bilbrey, and his wife Emy Joe. A bunch of us are getting together for a televised tribute and a fund-raising show for the Bilbrey’s on Thursday night July 15th. Larry Black and Mike Huckabee, who both host TV shows where Keith is the announcer, are putting it together. You can watch via CountryRoadsTV and hopefully other outlets as well.
The good news in June was that my grandson, Gabe, got to go home from the hospital after being confined for over a month following his bone marrow transplant. He still has a long recovery road ahead of him (he’s already been back in the hospital with pneumonia), but the doctors are pleased with his progress overall. I continue to be so grateful for your many prayers and messages of concern. I truly believe his support system is a big reason he is doing as well as he is. But please don’t stop now. The first 100 days following a procedure like this are critical, and we’re not even halfway there. Thank you.
Guess that wraps it up for this time. You folks here in the U.S. enjoy your Fourth of July and celebrate it in a safe and sane fashion. I’ll see you from the Opry stage on July 9th, the 17th, and the 31st, and back here again next month. Thanks for everything.