Photo by Rick Diamond
Throngs of fans were turned away when comedy and country music icon RAY STEVENS packed the house with a sold-out crowd at the Country Music Hall of Fame® and Museum’s Ford Theater this past Saturday, July 19, in downtown Nashville, Tennessee.
Stevens’ illustrious career, songwriter credits and new memoir, Ray Stevens’ Nashville, were the focus of the program, which featured a live performance and discussion session, hosted by historian, John Rumble.
“I want to thank the Country Music Hall of Fame, especially the session coordinator, Abi Tapia, for helping me put this together and for being so accommodating,” says Stevens. “It was very special for me and I’m honored to have been asked to perform.”
Backed by a ten-piece band and three backup singers, Stevens belted through some of his biggest career hits including, “The Streak,” “Everything Is Beautiful,” “Gitarzan,” “Mr. Businessman” and”Jeremiah Peabody’s Polyunsaturated Quick-Dissolving Fast-Acting Pleasant-Tasting Green and Purple Pills.”
The Oak Ridge Boys‘ Duane Allen was there to support his friend of many years.
“I told Ray I came to get a copy of his new book and he pulled one out of his pocket,” says Allen. “I think Ray is a genius. He always fluffs me off when I tell him that, but I have always felt that way about him. I also appreciate the fact that he is a very giving man. He goes way beyond the call to help those who really need help. So, I came to support Ray Stevens, my friend. Plus, I love to hear him tell stories and sing.”
Watch the entire performance HERE.
About Ray Stevens
Twelve-time nominated and two-time GRAMMY® Award winner Ray Stevens has spanned the generations with over 50 years of comedic musical talent, including songs such as his multi-million selling hit “The Streak” and his classic pop standard “Everything Is Beautiful.” Throughout his career, Stevens has sold more than 40 million albums and continues daily office operations at his home base, Ray Stevens Music / Clyde Records, located on Nashville’s historic Music Row. Stevens has released a number of video collections and CDs throughout the years, including his most recent in 2012, The Encyclopedia of Recorded Comedy Music.
About the Country Music Hall of Fame® and Museum
Accredited by the American Alliance of Museums, the Country Music Hall of Fame® and Museum is operated by the Country Music Foundation, a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) educational organization chartered by the state of Tennessee in 1964. The museum’s mission is the preservation of the history of country and related vernacular music rooted in southern culture. With the same educational mission, the foundation also operates CMF Records, the museum’s Frist Library and Archive, CMF Press, Historic RCA Studio B and Hatch Show Print®.