Saturday, November 28, 2015


JFK+50:  Volume 6, No. 1780


Nashville, Tennessee (JFK+50) WSM radio began broadcasting a new "Barn Dance" program 90 years ago today, November 28, 1925, from the National Life and Accident Insurance Company here in Music City USA.  The radio program featured a 77 year old fiddler named Uncle Jimmy Thompson.

The term "Grand Ole Opry" was not spoken on the air , however, until December 10, 1927.  The program was originally known as the "Barn Dance" but in introducing Deford Bailey, "the harmonica wizard," in 1927, emcee Walter Damrosch said:

"For the past hour, we have been listening to music from the Grand Opera.  From now on, we will present the "Grand Ole Opry".

The Barn Dance followed NBC Red Network's Music Appreciation Hour which consisted of classical music.

On June 5, 1943, the Opry moved to the RYMAN AUDITORIUM.  It would be the home of the Opry until 1974 when the move was made to the Grand Ole Opry House at Opryland USA.

Opry member Alan Jackson said...

"The ultimate dream when you're in country music is to be asked to join the Grand Ole Opry.  It's the cornerstone of country music.  I don't know if Nashville or country music would exist if it wasn't for this foundation, and I'm proud to be part of it."


"Grand Ole Opry To Celebrate 90 Years of Great Country Music With Nine-Month Celebration,"

Ryman Auditorium
Home of the Grand Ole Opry
Nashville, Tennessee
Photo by Ryan Kaldari (2005)