The Grand Ole Opry, which officially turns 90 years old in November, has a number of special events planned in the months before and after the longest running live radio show in American history reaches that milestone. One of the biggest will no doubt be the documentary concert film which is tentatively set to hit movie screens in December. Few other details have been released about the film, but on Monday, August 31st, Darius Rucker, Brad Paisley, Blake Shelton, the Band Perry and Brett Eldredge took to the historic stage for performances that will be included in American Saturday Night: Live From the Grand Ole Opry.
“I’m so proud to be a part of it,” Darius Rucker tells Rolling Stone Country of his participation in the film. “I’m one of the artists in it, talking about being a member of the Opry. I go there when I don’t play, just to talk to people and hang out. I’ve seen Vince [Gill] there, not playing, just hanging out, Marty Stuart, Little Jimmy [Dickens], Jim Ed Brown, God rest his soul. I love being a member.”
According to People.com, Shelton delivered a set that included one of his earliest chart-toppers, “Ol’ Red,” and one of his most recent, “Sangria.” Before launching into that tune, the irrepressible entertainer reportedly joked about the Opry’s backstage policy prohibiting alcohol backstage, although he was spotted taking a drink from a flask as he exited the stage.
Paisley took a solemn tone during a brief musical homage to his longtime friend and fellow Opry member, Little Jimmy Dickens, who died last December. The singer called Dickens “my best friend in this place.”
Paisley’s five-song set included the rousing “Southern Comfort Zone” and “American Saturday Night,” the latter of which no doubt inspired the title for the Opry film.