Bonnie Brown Ring, one-third of one of Country Music’s most enduring family groups as a member of The Browns, passed away on July 16th at Baptist Hospital in Little Rock, Arkansas following complications from lung cancer. She was 77 years old.
Born July 31, 1938 in Sparkman, Arkansas, Brown became enamored with music at an early age – thanks to the exposure she had to it from watching her older siblings, Maxine and James Edward. The two performed together, earning a hit in 1954 with “Looking Back To See.” Upon her graduation from high school, Bonnie joined her siblings, expanding their duet into a trio.
John Conlee, Grand Ole Opry star and one of the most recognizable voices in country music, honors law enforcement officers around the country with his performance of “Walking Behind The Star”, recently performed on the #1 rated cable morning show Fox News’ FOX & Friends.
I wanted to do this song to show support to police officers who are just doing their jobs,” says Conlee. “With all the turmoil going on I think they are relieved that someone is paying attention the other way and giving them a pat on the back.”
Conlee’s poignant interpretation of “Walkin’ Behind the Star” has sparked comments from around the country:
Howard R. Sills, sheriff for Putnam County, GA — “For the last 41 years I have been a police officer and for the last 19 years I have been the Sheriff of my hometown community. Needless to say we in the law enforcement profession haven’t been thought of too highly in most of the national media of late. This media coverage has made me more than a little despondent. I was lamenting about all of this when I turned on the Opry show this past Saturday night. It was not too long after the show began before a wonderful breeze of fresh air swept across my veranda and from my old GE radio sitting up on the porch rail. That breeze was the moment I heard you announce to the audience and the world that the Opry wanted to take a moment to honor those who “walk behind the star” and you sang the song with the same title that I’d never heard before. It literally caused me to tear up and it lifted my spirits. I cannot express thanks enough to you, the Opry and WSM-AM for the recognition during your show.”
Mike Kelleher, chaplain from San Bernardino County Sheriff department — “With all the bad press our force is constantly receiving, I would like to thank Mr. Conlee for his uplifting song.”
James Bartels, police officer in Patriot, OH — As a policeman shot in the line of duty, I found John Conlee’s comments and his performance on the Grand Ole Opry very moving. I would like to thank him for understanding the terror law enforcement endure every day in the society we live in.
Derik Walker, K102 Country in Spokane/Sandpoint, ID — Just wanted you to pass along to John Conlee that his song, “Walkin’ Behind The Star” was the absolute perfect song to play this week for our fallen officer Greg Moore of the Coeur d’Alene, Idaho police department. I can’t tell you how many calls we got regarding the song and how much it meant to folks in the inland Northwest as they deal with this tragedy. Sargent Greg Moore served the people for 16 years, before he was gunned down in Post Falls, Idaho Monday night. Please extend our gratitude to John on behalf of the entire K102 Country family!
David Lyons, police chief in Savannah, GA — I am a police chief in the state of Georgia, the immediate past president of the Georgia Association of Chiefs of Police and a career police officer. I heard you sing the song, “Walkin’ Behind the Star” and wanted to tell you how much I appreciated you. With all that’s going on in the world right now along with the attacks on our police officers, it is good to hear some appreciative words. Thank you and God bless you.
Conlee’s newest release, “Bread and Water” has deep meaning to the veteran Opry legend. “The song was written by Vince Gill and Leslie Satcher and hit me right in the heart the first time I heard it. It is a story of redemption and a reminder that with God, all things are possible.”
The chorus of the song says:
Bread and water, man that’s all you need
Bread and water, brother just believe
If you ain’t too proud to get down on your knees
The bread and water’s free
Bread and water’s free
John continues the long-standing relationship between faith and the country music industry. “Out of concerns for today’s America it has affected the way I’m applying my musical energies. I believe in prayer and I feel like now more than ever is the time to be singing about it and hopefully inspiring others to do the same.”
To learn more about John Conlee and his latest project, Classics 2 or tour date specifics, visit www.johnconlee.com.
Billy Currington, Cole Swindell, Easton Corbin, Parmalee and Jerrod Niemann have been added to K92.3’s Country Strong, an Orlando benefit concert for those affected by Sunday’s (6/12) mass shooting (CAT 6/15). They join Maddie & Tae,Tyler Farr, Canaan Smith and Michael Ray on the show, which is being hosted by Cox’s WWKA/Orlando and the cluster’s other properties. “This is going to be a truly amazing show and a much-needed night for this community,” says PD Andrew Bland. “We are incredibly grateful to the artists, labels and managers who are so willing to participate in such a quick timeframe.” Tickets are $20 and available here
Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer announced the formation of the OneOrlando Fund. The purpose of the Fund is to provide a way to help respond to the needs of our community, now and in the time to come, after the effects of the Pulse nightclub tragedy.
The distribution of the funds will be administered by the Central Florida Foundation. The Foundation serves as the region’s community foundation and is home to more than 400 charitable funds.
The Fund will support: Nonprofits that are supporting the victims and families,
• The LGBTQ, Hispanic, faith and other affected communities,
• Underlying causes of this tragic event, and
• Other needs we cannot anticipate until we face them
To kick-off the start of Summer, Musicians On Call (MOC), a groundbreaking nonprofit organization that brings live and recorded music to the bedsides of patients in hospitals across the country, launched its Summer Moments Auction. The auction, in partnership with eBay, will run through June 22nd and will include VIP experiences and memorabilia from over 25 artists including some of the biggest names in music. The Summer Moments Auction is a part of MOC’s Half A Million Moments campaign, celebrating the milestone of performing for half a million patients, families and caregivers.
Fans can get exclusive access to their favorite artists with VIP Experiences and memorabilia from over 50 top artists on a list that includes GRAMMY winners, Billboard chart-toppers and best-selling artists like Florida Georgia Line, Brad Paisley, Miranda Lambert, Sara Evans, Gavin DeGraw, Ingrid Michaelson, Andy Grammer, Nick Jonas & Demi Lovato, Clay Walker, Clint Black and many more. Bids start at $99 and fans can place their bids by going to www.ebay.com/moc. Fans have the opportunity to support MOC in all their eBay purchases through “Give at Checkout,” a site-wide donation promotion.
“As we celebrate the milestone of performing for half a million individuals, we’re excited to bring ‘Summer Moments’ to music fans across the country,” said Pete Griffin, Musicians On Call President. “With the funds raised, we can bring our own unique brand of bedside ‘summer tour’ performances to patients nationwide all year long.”
The auction is a part of MOC’s yearlong campaign, Half A Million Moments. The campaign’s goal is to celebrate their achievement by thanking the champions that helped MOC reach the milestone, asking volunteers and supporters to share their stories of their favorite moment bringing music to hospitals using #MOCMoments, and to raise funds and support to help MOC serve the next half a million people.