Multi-Grammy award winner and MCA Records Nashville recording artist Vince Gill celebrated his milestone 25thAnniversary as a member of the Grand Ole Opry® with two memorable shows Saturday night, claiming “This is a pretty sweet night.” Gill, one of the Opry’s most beloved and frequent players, was inducted as an Opry member on August 10, 1991.
Gill celebrated the special night he claimed was “the best night ever” doing what he loves most- performing, collaborating and sharing the stage with family and close friends including Amy Grant, Rodney Crowell, Patty Loveless, The Time Jumpers, Ashley Monroe, Andrea Zonn, Bill Anderson, Jenny Gill, Paul Franklin, and Charlie Worsham. After opening the night with his classic hit “One More Last Chance,” an emotional Gill welcomed everyone saying,
“This evening is filled with people I hold more than dear. They have made my entire life.”
Gill and friends had so much fun reminiscing and playing music that the first show ran almost an hour over its two-hour schedule, treating the audience to almost three hours of music.
“Sorry we made you late,” Gill said to a packed audience at the top of the night’s second show.
“We were having a blast in here.”
The fun included both Amy Grant and Rodney Crowell joining in the Saturday night tradition of dancing with the Opry Square Dancers.
Throughout the night, Gill’s friends and family told stories and reminisced. Daughter Jenny Gill told the audience of the time when she was in first grade and her dad finally got the call he had been waiting for– the Grand Ole Opry calling to invite him to make his Opry debut. However, he had to decline the long-awaited opportunity, saying he was already booked. He had promised Jenny he would accompany her on guitar on “You Are My Sunshine” for her school’s talent show. She remarked,
“It’s a great thing they called him back, don’t you think?”
Longtime friend Patty Loveless said before the two performed Gill’s iconic classics “When I Call Your Name,” and “Go Rest High On That Mountain,”
“It’s always been an honor to sing with Vince Gill.”
“Vince has truly become family to all of us at the Opry,” said Pete Fisher, Vice President and General Manager, Opry. “Like Mr. Acuff before him, his dressing room door is always open, and he’s often ready to pick one backstage and catch up with friends in the wings as well as to collaborate with them musically on the Opry stage.”
“It is obvious in watching clips from Vince’s Opry induction 25 years ago that Opry patriarch Roy Acuff was a big Vince Gill fan and that he was hoping Vince would help carry on the magic of the Opry for future generations,” added Fisher. “Though Roy died the next year, there is no doubt he would be proud tonight of all that Vince has accomplished and everything he has meant to Mr. Roy’s beloved show.”
©2016 Grand Ole Opry Photos By: Chris Hollo