October 2, 2014
I guess by now most of you have heard that our six-day run of Country’s Family Reunion shows, scheduled for the Starlite Theater in Branson October 21st through the 26th, has been canceled.
Many of you have written to me asking if I’m sick, but rest assured I am fine. I had nothing to do with these shows being taken off the books. Evidently, the advance ticket sales weren’t up to expectations, and the promoters decided to call off the shows rather than risk losing lots of money. I’m sure sorry, because I know many of you had made plans to come see us. Hopefully, the shows can be re-scheduled at a later time.
Other than that, things are great in Whisperworld. We had a busy September, spending much of it in the studio recording several new Family Reunion DVD’s, including two of which I believe to be among the best programs we’ve ever done. One is a salute to the life and career of the great Ray Price, on which Ray’s wife, Janie, appears and shares so much of the “backstage Ray” that most people never got to see during his lifetime. The show is filled with Ray Price music, and it’s incredible.
The other outstanding show is a Salute To The Honky Tonks and, as the name implies, it’s full of toe-tappin’ dance hall tunes performed by some of the best traditional country singers in the world. The circle comes alive with stories and songs that you can’t help but love. And while on the subject of CFR, we’ll be taking our Family Reunion Road Show to Franklin, N.C., on October 11th and we’re looking forward to seeing lots of our friends and viewers over that way.
October also begins our “Awards Season” in Nashville, and I’ll be attending the ROPE Country Awards on Oct. 2nd, the Songwriters Hall of Fame induction ceremonies on Oct. 5th, and the Medallion Ceremony, honoring the new inductees in to the Country Music Hall of Fame, on Oct. 26th. Our Opry dates this month are October 3rd, Oct. 10th (the Opry’s Birthday Celebration weekend), Oct. 17th, Oct. 18th, Oct. 25th, and Oct. 28th.
September was marked by the sadness of losing our friend, George Hamilton IV. He was a dear pal of mine for over a half-century, and his passing leaves a large void, not only in my life but in so many others. I hope you will continue to keep another close friend, Jim Ed Brown, in your thoughts and prayers as he battles lung cancer. And your continued prayers for my young grandson, Gabe, whose doctors have recently increased his doses of chemo, are needed and appreciated as well. We don’t understand these things sometimes, but we have to trust The One who does.
Have a great month as the weather cools and the leaves begin to turn. With the baseball playoffs going on and football in full swing, autumn continues to be my favorite season of the year. Thanks for all you continue to mean in my life and my career, and my best to each of you always.