Deborah Evans Price for Country Music Weekly “You wouldn’t think a superstar like Alan Jackson would get nervous before a performance. After all, the man has sold nearly 60 million albums, topped the singles chart 35 times and played prestigious venues all over the world. However, when WSM radio’s Eddie Stubbs welcomed him to the stage August 27th for a sold-out performance at Nashville’s famed Station Inn, Alan admitted to some jitters.
“I’m more nervous playing this thing right here than if I was playing a 10,000-seat arena,” Alan told the standing room only crowd.
He needn’t have worried. After performing his upcoming release, The Bluegrass Album, in its entirety, Alan received an enthusiastic standing ovation. He kicked off the evening with the album’s opening song, “Long Hard Road,” and quipped at the end of the tune that it was a “long song . . . almost eight minutes.” The cheering audience obviously loved every minute. The packed crowd was peppered with record company folks, media, family (including Alan’s lovely wife, Denise) and fans, among them some who had stood in line for more than 12 hours just to get a chance to buy tickets when they went on sale Monday afternoon.
As Alan made his bluegrass debut, he was backed by the musicians who recorded the new album with him: Tim Crouch (fiddle), Rob Ickes (Dobro), Adam Steffey (mandolin), Sammy Shelor (banjo), Tim Dishman (bass) and Scott Coney (guitarist in Alan’s longtime band The Strayhorns). Ronnie Bowman and Don Rigsby sang harmony vocals most of the night with Alan calling his nephew Adam Wright to the stage to join him in singing “Ain’t Got Trouble Now,” which Adam wrote. (Adam also co-produced the album with Alan’s longtime producer Keith Stegall.) read more