We should have known something was afoot when so many friends showed up for just a quick Friday night Opry appearance. But, as usual, we were really pounding out a huge schedule, which included a ton of studio time. We were a bit tired and totally caught off guard when Dickens appeared behind us dressed in a full fake beard, cowboy hat, and dark shades.
“I have always wanted to be a little bitty Oak Ridge Boy. You don’t know this, but on August 6th, I will become the newest member of the Oak Ridge Boys and you all will become the next members of the Grand Ole Opry!” he announced.
What an emotional night. We came off stage to a ton of cameras and press from newspapers and TV stations, all the while trying to process this astounding honor. The WOW factor was overwhelming, because we did NOT see this coming! It was a total surprise.
Many friends and peers have expressed surprise that we weren’t members sooner. Many thought we WERE members, and others have lamented the “what took so long?” approach. My thoughts are that the time frame does not matter. The end result is that, out of the clear unsuspecting blue, we went to bed last week as the newest members of the Grand Ole Opry!
We have always been thrilled to sing a few songs upon the hallowed stage when asked. In so doing, we have ALWAYS felt a small part of the magic that IS the Grand Ole Opry. But it is different now. We can now call ourselves OPRY stars... official MEMBERS!
It is indeed one of the highest honors that might exist for a singer of songs and, to a man, we are proud and humbled. It is seriously like a bunch of friends have been asking us over for dinner for years, and this time they said, “Hey BOYS pack a bag... you are moving in now... THIS is HOME!”
Home at last...to the Grand Ole Opry Boys.
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