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Tornado Co-writers....More Corona...Back On The Radio

Mar 13 | Posted by: Bill Whyte |

Friday morning…the weekend is here man is it going to be weird to not be able to find one “live” sporting event on TV.



Seems like all my conversations in Nashville these days revolve around three topics. Music, tornados and coronavirus. My writing appointment was with Dave Brainard and Jenny Tolman.  Driving to their house I could not help but notice the damage to homes and trees no more than a block from where they live. Some were leveled. Volunteers, power and electric trucks were everywhere as I made my way to the home they just moved in.  There’s did not have a nick, nary a tree down.  Jenny woke up like a lot of us early that morning, turned on the news and saw her street on the map with announcer saying “take cover”.  She yelled at Dave, they hit the lower floor, and nothing.  Their drummer just a few doors down had huge trees that went down and some crashed into his roof.  How tornados skip from one place to another will never cease to amaze me.


And as we set out to write a new song one could not avoid the constant bad news about coronavirus and news of seemingly everything shutting down.  All sports pretty much.  And now tons of shows and gigs for musicians are being cancelled. The two of them have a show in beautiful Jackson Hole, Wyoming next weekend and they’ve never been to that beautiful place.  I’m hoping they get lucky and get to go as I’m hoping the two shows I have that next weekend in Wisconsin and Illinois will hold.  But I’m not overly optimistic. I’m half expecting to take a drive tomorrow and have tumbleweeds blow across the road.



Sitting here thinking how odd it was that I was in baseball stadiums 5 times last week for Spring Training baseball and now every one of those parks is closed down.  Who could have known? I’m glad I got a little in, as we’re not likely to see Major League Baseball til much later this year.


My friend Victoria Venier who is part of my “Hits & Grins” songwriter trio last night owns a huge production company with her husband Matt and we texted last night.  She confirmed what I suspicioned that a TON of of their produced shows have been cancelled already.  30 and counting…and no new contracts for entertainment will be signed right now.  Their show on the General Jackson Showboat in Nashville could also get cancelled at any minute.  Hits & Grins…all of us are glad that the 21-show tour we have doesn’t start til October because we’d lose all of those theater dates if they were on the calendar within the next few weeks.


And what the freak is it with toilet paper?  Geez.  My wife Kathy has learned to make homemade sanitizer so there’s that. 


I’m betting a lot of Spring Breaks are going to be cancelled…some have already.  That will at least help us avoid the “Drunk Virus” that a lot of teenagers catch on those trips.



I was at my Starbucks this morning with the Grande Pike no room cup, when I read that Starbucks may go to an order through their App only and shut the doors from people like me walking in at 5 AM.  Get your java at the drive thru window only.  Wonder if a robot will pass the cup out?



Gosh, with all the TV shows cancelling that have “live” audiences, no sports, and I’m sure no movies at the theaters…might be a good time to buy stock in board games.



I know zero about the stock market except when not to look and when not to panic. Some folks are going to make a lot of money when they pour cash back in if they can judge the right moment for the huge upswing that’s going to come sooner or later.  I’ll be watching the ticker tape as I’m trying to buy Park Place during my Monopoly game.



Here’s my idea of how to get through a possible stay in quarantine.  Rent a beach condo for a month.  One with a view of the ocean.  Hey…if ya gotta stay in…that would not be a bad way to wait it out.



Have you seen this video of Gloria Gaynor that’s gone viral of her singing her big hit “I Will Survive” while she’s washing her hands?  Keep your sense of humor folks.  And thank you for yours Gloria.



It’s been a bit since I’ve been on the radio but that will change when I fill in for Bill Cody on 650AM WSM Radio inside the Opryland Hotel.  I’m not sure if the studio will be wrapped in plastic or not.  I’ll let you know.  But you can listen in if you’d like worldwide on wsmonline.com and the show is now televised on Circle TV…so you can watch us “live” if you have that channel.  Man I hate putting makeup on.



I also found out for sure that the Smoky Mountain Festival that was cancelled last year in Gatlinburg is back on this August.  Last year the wonderful organizer Cyndy Montgomery Reeves died of cancer at about the time the festival was to begin.  Man did she love songwriters.


This year the event has been retitled to the Gatlinburg Songwriters Festival and will run August 20 through August 23.  Our Hits & Grins trio will play three shows there and some will be at new venues like Ole Red.  I’ll also be part of a group songwriting class and maybe more.  I’ll have all the details soon and you’ll find that on my Calendar here on the website.  But that’s always a very fun weekend and the Smokies are always beautiful.  So make plans to join us.



And here comes the Man Card violation update.  Peter the pilot…and Madison are already done. Those that watch the show know the drama that ensued there.  My guess is Madison came down with Momma In Law virus…and got very sick from his Mom and her comments. So, he’s a free man and another likely candidate for “Dancing With The Stars”.



We did escape possible tornados again last night.  I didn’t’ have to get up and start looking for candles and flashlights.  Thank you.  We do have a lot of rain in the forecast all weekend.  Meanwhile, Tahoe is supposed to get 40 inches of snow this weekend!  Be a good time for a ski trip if it weren’t for having to get on a plane and then worry about whether you could find toilet paper once you got to Tahoe.



Still writing.  Back in a writing room with Gerald Smith and former American Idol star Janelle Arthur today.  Guess we’ll greet each other by bumping elbows.


Have a great weekend!








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