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Vince Gill Celebrates 20 Years with The Grand Ole Opry

On Saturday, August 13, 2011, Vince Gill will celebrate a 20-year milestone as a member of The Grand Ole Opry with a star-packed show featuring Emmylou Harris, Martina McBride, John Anderson, The Time Jumpers, his wife Amy Grant, and his daughter, Jenny Gill.

One of country music’s most loved singers, Vince Gill is a fan favorite at the Opry.

Pete Fisher, Opry vice president and general manager says, “He plays the Opry because he loves it, and the Opry family loves him right back. We’re excited to celebrate Vince’s 20 years with us among some of his best friends and biggest fans.”

Winning more Grammy awards than any other male country artist, Vince Gill has recorded more than 20 studio albums, charted over 40 singles on the U.S. Billboard charts, and sold more than 26 million albums. A five-time CMA Male Vocalist and two-time Entertainer of the Year, Gill is known for his love for country music, warm tenor voice, top-notch songwriting, and world-class guitar playing, which is how he got his start in the business playing with country rock band Pure Prairie League. Vince Gill is one of the most awarded singers in country music, known for his quick and easy wit.

He talks about the special bond Opry members have for each other, “I’ve been a part of a really special family for 20 years. It’s hard to believe when some people have been there for 60 years like Little Jimmy Dickens. The first time I sang with [him] was a big deal. We sang ‘May the Bird of Paradise Fly Up Your Nose,’ which was something I would sing with my dad when I was a little kid. We would sit around and we loved singing that.”

Gill shares some of his favorite behind the scenes moments from his 20 years playing The Opry.

Before he met Bill Anderson, the Opry legend had heard that Vince’s answering machine featured Vince imitating Anderson. “He was at one end of the hall and I came in. I said, ‘Oh no, there he is.’ He is walking towards me fast and there was nowhere for me to go. I kept walking and he said, ‘All right, Gill, do me,’” says Gill, slipping into the imitation. “I said, ‘All right, I’m Whispering Bill Anderson and I wrote ‘City Lights’ and you can kiss my ass.’” Gill says Anderson cracked up and they’ve been fast friends ever since.
 
“What’s special are the relationships with those people, knowing Charlie Louvin and Bill Monroe, and knowing that you get to have a relationship with them and see them on weekends and shoot the breeze on how their life is. I’ve been there for 20 years and I’m hoping for 40, and maybe if I’m really lucky, I’ll get 60,” said Gill.

An entertainment institution for more than 85 years, The Grand Ole Opry presents the best in country music live every weekend of the year, with the Tuesday Night Opry continuing through December 13th. For country music fans outside of Nashville, TN., The Opry can be heard on 650 WSM-AM, Sirius XM satellite radio, and on the web at Opry.com. The syndicated weekly program, America’s Opry Weekend, airs on country radio stations across America and on the Armed Forces Radio Network.

 If you’d like to be in the audience for Vince Gill and friends on this special Opry night, you can purchase tickets at 1-(800) SEE-OPRY or log on to www.opry.com for more information.

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