I am sitting in bed, alone, the cats are around here somewhere, but even they are sleeping. The atmosphere is peaceful and quiet, but I can feel the excitement in it. It's coming from me, of course. I am far, far away from where the big thing is only minutes away from happening. It's all going down in Nashville, Tennessee, USA and I'm on the southern coast of Spain.
I've got my good headphones on, the ones with a really good bass in them, some coffee to drink and my mobile phone. And, of course, the most important thing, the app for the Grand Ole Opry's live radio broadcast. I have heard artist after artist playing and singing their country songs, but I don't even remember who. I'm only interested in one special band. My favourite music band of all times, the country a cappella band Home Free, are having their debut at the legendary Opry - the show that made country music famous.
I don't know when I first heard about the Opry, it seems like I've know about it all my life and maybe I have. My parents listened to country music when I was growing up and I have always favourited it without being aware of it. It's about the harmonies and the melodies, and the stories. And the Grand Ole Opry is to country music artists what Wimbledon is to tennis player. To get to play there is a huge dream, a goal, something to aim for. And probably something surreal when you are actually there.
Anyway, this is the first I actually tune in to the show live. I like it, even though I don't remember what I'm hearing tonight. It's country and I love country.
So, here I am, in high anticipation, waiting for Home Free to come on. This is big for them. This is big for the Opry and it is big for the world. This is big for the Home Fries. This is an historical night in the world of music. The rest of the world don't know it yet, but they will.
Another artist finishes his song and the presenter starts reading an advertisement and a huge roar is heard. And I know. Home Free just entered the stage. The presenter stops mid-reading the ad to say that he's never heard that big a response to an ad before. Yeah, right, I think, nice try. The Fries know. The Fries can feel it. The energy. Home Free is in the house.
I can hear how nervous they are when they start singing, those first few lines, are tense, but they do great. I have tears in my eyes of joy and chills down my spine from the greatness of the moment. This is wow oh so big. They finish their first song Life Is A Highway by Rascal Flats, and there is another roar from the crowd. I am wondering how many of the people in the audience are new to Home Free. I wounder what they think. I wish I could see it, not only hear it!
Now, Ring Of Fire, oh Ring Of Fire, the song that made me fall in love with them, the song that changed my life. I smile a smile so big it hurts, my cheeks are still wet with happy tears running down and I'm dancing right here on the bed. When Tim does his low notes I can feel the audience take a deep breath of surprise. Oh, how I would have loved to be there in person. But this is ok too. I am so excited to be a part of this, of their great moment in life. Because I am. I do get to share this! And I am proud as a mum! Maybe it's got to do with being a Patron. Or maybe it's just the feeling of love being all around them at all times.
Another roar from the crowd is heard when they finish the song. It is over. I am raising my hands to the ceiling in victory (I seem to do that a lot, and cry happy tears, when it comes to Home Free) and say Yes! They did so well! What a great job they did! Yes! Yes!
The presenter thanks them and tells them how great they were. Yes, they were. They sure were."
It took me hours to get down from the high that night. What a great debut it was!
Home Free were invited back on the spot, the Grand Ole Opry was that impressed by them. How could they not be. Remember all those roars I heard from the audience? They weren't just roars, they were standing Ovations. 3. Yes, that's right! Home Free got 3! standing O's on their debut at the friggin' Grand Ole Opry! And they only did 2 songs! Lot's of Fries in the house, and the Opry was blown away. Great job, Fries! Fantabulous job, Home Free!
I heard a story about the Opry tour guide being in the back of the building when Tim hit his low note, and he felt the rumble from it. How cool is that?!
This all happened because of Duane Allen and The Oak Ridge Boys, who have truly taken Home Free under their wings. They brought Tim with them to one of their performances at the Opry and introduced them to each other. Way to go, Duane and ORB!! The Fries are you forever indebted for so much! We can't wait to see what the future will hold for the nine of you together!
The reason why I have waited this long to share this experience with you is because I wanted to be able to share an official video of it, and the Opry finally uploaded Life Is A Highway to their YouTube channel yesterday.
You can see the tension on the guys, especially on Austin. I've never seen his face to tight before. But you can also see and feel the joy and disbelief in their eyes, and their relief when the song is over. And you can see the second standing O. I hope we get to see Ring Of Fire one day too. I can't wait for them to go back there, and my bucket has a new addition. Not only do I want to go to the Opry, and not only do I want to see Home Free live, but I also want to see Home Free live at the Opry.
One day that dream will come true!