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The Quacker...More New Shows...Fishin Hurts

Mar 31 | Posted by: Bill Whyte |

Hump Day…and the last day of ole March. Bring on Easter and Opening Day baseball. We had even more rain here last night (good for the Ark Building industry) but got the lawn mowed for the first time this year before it started coming down again. Good timing there. And now we have more flash flood warnings to look out for. Been a soggy Spring.

 

YESTERDAY

I wrote with my friend Gerald Smith yesterday the “Georgia Quacker” and former Hee Haw star. Gerald was in great spirits, had just survived his first Moderna shot after thinking he would not get one originally and brought a great title to the computer with him. It was a two verse-three chorus deal so it did not take long to put another up-tempo bluegrass tune into our catalog. Nothing “pop or rap” in Gerald...a true country guy who grew up with traditional country music and had hits with Lorrie Morgan, George Jones, Colin Raye, George Strait and many others. In fact at one time Gerald pitched songs for George Strait’s publishing company here in town. So not only do I have the pleasure of laughing and writing with him (and he’s got a CD two or more full of funny songs) but I also get to hear great stories about his musical journey and the experiences he’s had in his long career. So, a fun Monday for sure with the “Quacker”.

 

MORE SHOWS COMING

It do feel more and more like venues are starting to open. In fact I know they are as all of a sudden a few dates are going or are about to go up on my touring calendar. It looks like I’ll be doing a June 5 date (Saturday) at the Peoples Listening Room in Mobile, Alabama which is a great little 50 seat room TRUE listening room. I’ll be working with a comedian friend Juanita Smith…a Mom of a Trop Rocker buddy Eric Erdman who later in life decided to try her hand at standup comedy.

 

And then in late June it looks like there is a better than fair chance that I’ll be on a plane back to beautiful Montrose, Colorado to write with a veteran again for the organization Freedom Sings USA. Talk about a beautiful part of the country. 

 

Details on both are about to firm up so stay tuned for final details. But it’s good to know that my suitcase is going to get a workout again after a long period of not being packed or going anywhere because of Covid-19.

 

VIRUS NOTES
Here’s the true ying and yang about the virus. Here in Nashville restaurants are hiring like crazy. And the number of virus cases are rising.

 

For those in the country music community Covid got very real when Joe Diffie died of Covid complications one year ago yesterday. Not only a GREAT country singer, but just a great guy to be around. I had the pleasure of emceeing Joe Diffie’s annual Fundraiser for a couple of years in a row at the Ryman Auditorium with a who’s who of country stars who came out and sang for Joe. The charity is called “First Steps” and Joe raised a ton of money to benefit mentally and impaired children. That effort won him a Humanitarian Award from the Country Radio Broadcasters in 1997. Hard to replace guys like him. And then came John Prine, and Charley Pride who all died of Covid complication that reminds the rest of us how serious it is. The last time I interviewed Joe Diffie was on my morning show at WSM-FM here in Nashville and he brought me a bottle of his homemade wine. He liked to brew stuff in his house. The bottle is unopened and will always be.

 

Pfizer now says their vaccine is 100% effective, and safe in kids as young as 12 years of age.

 

PIGSKIN

The Final Four is now set with three number on seeds in. Gonzaga, Baylor, Houston and the long shot team of UCLA ranked 11 in the brackets who got in after upsetting a #1 ranked Michigan squad last night. With all of that…football is already on some folk’s minds.

 

The NFL will have a 17-game season this year with only 3 pre-season games. I can’t imagine anyone missing pre-season football games so they could do away with all of those as far as I’m concerned. The NFL also says they are looking to fill stadiums up again. Of course that’s on the condition that we get numbers of virus cases shrinking instead of increasing again as some experts are predicting. How great would it be as a sports fan to see full stadiums again and hearing that home crowd noise? Fingers crossed.

 

THAT’S GONNA LEAVE A MARK

Luke Bryan went fishing. Luke Bryan went to a hospital because Luke Bryan had a fishing accident that left him with a hook in his thumb that had to be removed. Yikes. It happens. Gotta be careful with those treble and double hooks y’all. I’m sure that worms must think this is a bit of payback for them. Even the most professional of fisher-folks can have an accident or two. Have you ever seen the Bill Dance bloopers?  Even a non-fisherman will laugh at some of what Bill’s endured.

 

I’m looking for a few accidents from those who will try to put a hook into a Cicada pretty soon as they tell us a huge brood will hatch in just a few weeks across 15 states including parts of Tennessee. Dang noisy critters. Can’t wait to hear that “crunchy” sound underneath my tennis shoes when I go for a walk during Cicada season.

 

PRAISE THE LORD?  NOT AS MUCH

A new Gallup Poll reveal less and less of us are church members. Less than half of all Americans now and the numbers keep growing. And it appears very much to be age related.

 

If you were born before 1946 66% are church members.

We Baby Boomers? 58%. And then the number start going the other way.

 

Gen X only 50%. And the Millennials?  Only 33% are members. I don’t think that means that Millennials don’t have faith or believe to the extent of those numbers. I just don’t think the kids are into signing up to be official church members. Folks find faith and God and feel the spirit in different ways and it’s not always while sitting on a pew in a church. There have been songs that cover that extremely well.

 

I love "Mind On Fishing"  from Trace Adkins that features T. Graham Brown. And I also love “Saltwater Gospel” from the Eli Young Band that covers that thought.

 

SPEAKING OF CHURCH…AND SIGNS

I do love some of the funny church signs you’ll see from time to time. Here’s a couple that make me smile.

 

“God Expects Spiritual Fruit…Not Religious Nuts”

 

And: “Prophecy Class Cancelled Due to Unforeseen Circumstances”

 

Songwriter Doug Gill tells a great story about a church sign that created a great song that Don Williams recorded called “Stronger Back”. He was driving one day and saw the church sign that read “I Don’t Pray for a Lighter Load, I Pray for a Stronger Back”. Now Doug saw the church sign somewhere here in Nashville which is full of talented songwriters. So Doug said he got out and rearranged the letters so that no other writer would see it and write it. Funny. And it is a great song. Click on the link above to hear.

 

HEADLINE OF THE DAY

“North Walton DUI Stop…Police Find an Emotional Support Snake”.  Right. So the guy is driving drunk WITH a snake. Nothing weird about that right?

 

TODAY

For the first time in a long while I’m writing with an old friend Rick Tiger. Rick came to this town years ago and dug in. I met him when he parked cars at the Opryland Hotel. He’s sold hotdogs at a club down on Printers Alley, driven for Uber…done whatever to support his family and support his songwriting habit. And he’s had songs of his recorded by Tim McGraw and Montgomery Gentry to name a couple.  I so admire that. And Rick is a great storyteller who loves traditional country music. So, we’ll catch up and probably write something old school and have fun doing so.

 

Have a great Wednesday.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

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