December 19, 2011

Ray Stevens: Nostalgia Valley, Part 30...

Here's a great treat...Ray Stevens, Boots Randolph, and Chet Atkins perform a familiar instrumental on Nashville Now in 1993. Ralph Emery hosts the show. The upload came along on December 16th but it wasn't showing up in the search results for 'Ray Stevens' until today and therefore I was unaware of the video's existence.

As far as The Nashville Network goes, 1993 was the channel's 10th anniversary. It would also be the 10th and final season of Nashville Now. The show would be replaced with Music City Tonight and feature the same format but with different hosts: Lorianne Crook and Charlie Chase. This series ran through 1996 before it, too, was replaced with Prime Time Country. That particular series was first hosted by actor Tom Wopat and later, Gary Chapman. This series would remain on the air until The Nashville Network ended it's affiliation with country music in 1999. In the meantime, back in 1995, Ralph Emery returned to The Nashville Network to host a morning talk-show from Opryland. This series, which started in the mornings, shifted to the early evenings, before it was canceled in 1996.

Crook and Chase, in the meantime, had started a syndicated television program which ran for a couple of years. Upon the cancellation of Ralph's talk-show he would return a third time to host a series of hour long interviews for a show called On The Record. Ralph, by this time, had become the author of a string of successful books about country music and his experiences with the industry and the artists. Ray Stevens made appearances on Music City Tonight, Ralph's daytime and evening shows, and Prime Time Country but didn't appear in the On The Record series. A large reason for this is, probably, due to Ray not having an autobiography available.

I've posted this before but it's worth additional viewings. This clip comes from 1990 during an All-Star Salute to Ralph Emery. The video starts with a performance from Randy Travis and later we have Ray Stevens performing a song he wrote just for the event, "Ralph, You Have Embarrassed Us All". Ray is joined by Roy Clark, Kathy Mattea, and Faron Young.

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