Saturday Night Serenade–Ladies’ Night

If you missed the Academy of Country Music Awards show this past week like I did, you missed some amazing performances. Thank goodness for Hulu, which has the show in its entirety. It’s just waiting for you to stream.

You don’t even have to be a country music fan to appreciate the talent assembled at this gathering. The show was hosted by country music legends Dolly Parton, Reba McIntire, and future legend Carrie Underwood. Performances included some inspired pairings like Pink with Chris Stapleton, Garth Brooks with Blake Shelton, and Kacey Musgraves with Willie Nelson singing Rainbow Connection. Don’t even get me started with Ms. Reba bringing down the house with Fancy.

But to me, the most showstopping moment of the night was the opener, a medley of classic songs, many of which were performed by the legendary ladies who made them famous. The extended production number ends with all the ladies joining together to perform Martina McBride’s Independence Day, a rousing anthem of female empowerment and a lethal warning to those who would raise their hands against their partners.

I hope you enjoy this as much as I did. Stay warm this cold November weekend. Be sure to hug those you love.

Happy Saturday night!

Saturday Night Serenade–Royalty

Did you catch the 2019 Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony on HBO last weekend? I look forward to the show every year. The performers always bring their A-game, and this year was no exception.

This year’s inductees included Radiohead, Roxy Music, Janet Jackson, Def Leppard, The Cure, and The Zombies. While Radiohead and Janet Jackson opted not to perform, the others were outstanding.

The show opened with an electrifying four-song set by the incomparable Stevie Nicks, the first woman to be inducted into the Hall of Fame twice–previously for her work with Fleetwood Mac and now for her solo career. She performed Leather and Lace with Don Henley, but I loved Stop Draggin’ My Heart Around with Harry Styles pinch-hitting for the late great Tom Petty.

But I can’t leave you without a song by the evening’s final recipients, because, well, Def Leppard.

I hope you’re having a wonderful almost-summer weekend. Hug those you love and tell them how much they mean to you.

Happy Saturday night!

Saturday Night Serenade–Something That We Do

I grew up in Chattanooga, Tennessee, and I traveled through Nashville countless times on my way to visit relatives in Kentucky.  But it wasn’t until I was an adult that I first stayed there for a couple of nights.

Nashville is a cool town, with lots to see and do.  We stayed downtown, and walked all over the place.  We got a little rowdy in a huge bar called the Wildhorse Saloon, and we didn’t miss the opportunity to stop by the Ryman Auditorium, the sacred cathedral of country music.

The Grand Ole Opry started out as a live radio show in 1925, and was housed in the Ryman starting in 1943 and remained there until 1974, when it moved to its current, larger location.  In the center of the new stage, there’s a six-foot circle of oak that came from the Ryman stage, symbolically and literally the heart of the theatre.

Even if you’re not a country music fan, the Grand Ole Opry is a sight to behold.  It’s still a live radio show, every Saturday night.  It also airs on television.  But to be there is an experience.

Because unbeknownst to listeners, the Opry stage is like a three-ring circus, with something always happening.  While someone is performing, someone who just finished is still out there breaking down, and the next act up is busy getting set up.  Groups of tourists enter and leave the stage, snapping photos and getting autographs if they’re lucky.

In addition to being a show and a venue, the Opry is something of a Hall of Fame as well.  Performers who are deemed worthy are invited to join, and it’s a huge honor.  It’s also a commitment–Opry members are required to perform there a certain number of times per year.

There is a set schedule every week, so when you purchase your tickets, you know who you’ll be seeing.  BUT…  Performers who have a little time available often pop in unannounced, the better to get some of their annual obligation out of the way.

And so it happened that the night we went to the Grand Ole Opry, we were treated to a performance we didn’t expect.  As one act was finishing up, we noticed an increased level of excitement at the side of the stage.

As soon as that performer left the stage, Clint Black and his co-writer Skip Ewing walked out, each carrying an acoustic guitar and a stool.  Sitting on the apron of the stage, they began to play Something That We Do.  The entire place went dark, with only a spotlight on the pair, and for the first time all night, a hush fell over the room, all of us spellbound by this beautiful song.

I remember well the day we wed
I can see that picture in my head
I still believe the words we said
Forever will ring true
Love is certain, love is kind
Love is yours and love is mine
But it isn’t something that we find
It’s something that we do
It’s holding tight, lettin’ go
It’s flying high and laying low
Let your strongest feelings show
And your weakness, too
It’s a little and a lot to ask
An endless and a welcome task
Love isn’t something that we have
It’s something that we do
We help to make each other all that we can be
Though we can find our strength and inspiration independently
The way we work together is what sets our love apart
So closely that you can’t tell where I end and where you start
It gives me heart remembering how
We started with a simple vow
There’s so much to look back on now
Still it feels brand-new
We’re on a road that has no end
And each day we begin again
Love’s not just something that we’re in
It’s something that we do
We help to make each other all that we can be
Though we can find our strength and inspiration independently
The way we work together is what sets our love apart
So closely that you can’t tell where I end and where you start
Love is wide, love is long
Love is deep and love is strong
Love is why I love this song
And I hope you love it too
I remember well the day we wed
I can see that picture in my head
Love isn’t just those words we said
It’s something that we do
There’s no request too big or small
We give ourselves, we give our all
Love isn’t someplace that we fall
It’s something that we do

It’s a moment I’ll never forget.  And I can’t shake the message of the song, that love isn’t somewhere we fall, or something we find, it’s something we do.  Every day.  Every moment.

I hope this evening finds you well, and surrounded by those you love.  Be sure to give them a hug.

Happy Saturday night!

PS–I’m adding another beautiful Clint Black song, this one a duet with his wife, Lisa.  ❤

So THIS Was An Adventure…

A couple of months ago, Mr. R called to me from his man cave/office in the back of the house.

“I bought us tickets to a show at the Kelsey,” he said.

“Great!” I responded.  The Kelsey is a small Indie theatre not far from us in the little town of Lake Park.  The theatre, and the place next door, a funky art space called the Brewhouse Gallery, are owned by a kid (okay, he’s pushing 30) who went to school with my kids.  The last time we were there was to attend Swedefest, a film festival celebrating “Bad films by good people.”

Mr. R handed me the tickets he’d printed, and being the curious soul that I am, I went ahead and Googled the Hellzapoppin Circus Sideshow Revue.  What I found is the video I posted above.  Mmm-yeah.

But I have learned that the things I regret in life are the things I didn’t do, the chances I didn’t take.

So, all of that to say…
If they come to your town, give’em a whirl.  😉