Newly inducted Country Music Hall of Fame country and bluegrass icon Marty Stuart recently celebrated his 30th Anniversary as a Grand Ole Opry member, and his 50 years in Nashville with an all-star concert event at the Opry on Nov. 26. Stuart, 64, also debuted a new song “Country Star.”
The Opry celebration, which featured performances by The Del McCoury Band, Connie Smith, Jason Crabb, Gary Mule Deer, Stuart’s band The Fabulous Superlatives, and a debut by Jontavious Willis, will livestream on Nov. 27 on Circle Television social media channels, Willie’s Roadhouse show on SiriusXM, and in its entirety at Opry website and on WSM Radio.
Stuart first made his appearance on the Grand Ole Opry at the age of 13, one week after joining Lester Flatt’s bluegrass band as a mandolin player. In 1992, Stuart was inducted into the Opry family.
In a recent interview, Stuart also hinted at returning to television with a new music show, a possible continuation of his The Marty Stuart Show, which originally aired in 2008 and 2014 on RFD-TV and was inspired by classic shows like The Porter Wagoner Show, or The Johnny Cash Show.
The 156 original shows featured Stuart and his backing band, The Fabulous Superlatives, and Eddie Stubbs as the announcer, along with a collection of special guests, including Dolly Parton, Willie Nelson, Keith Urban, Lyle Lovett and many more throughout its run.
“The mission statement there was to put our arms around the culture of traditional country music inside the walls of Nashville before it completely disappeared off the edge of planet Earth. And we accomplished that,” said Stuart of the show in 2017. “At the end of the 156 episodes and six or seven seasons, you know what? Mission accomplished. Let’s move on. That particular show is in the books now. It’s in history books.”
Sutart’s new show, which has a pilot episode filmed, will be tied to his Congress of Country Music in his hometown Philadelphia, Mississippi.
The Congress of Country Music will give a permanent home to approximately 20,000 country music artifacts collected by Stuart throughout his career, including the boots Patsy Cline was wearing when she died in a plane crash in 1963, Johnny Cash’s first suit, and Hank Williams’ handwritten notes to “Cold, Cold Heart.”
“I see it as 30-minute episodes, revolving around going out to obtain an artifact, rescuing it, and bringing it back,” said Stuart. “Every show will start in the warehouse in Philadelphia, [MS], where everything is staged right now. You get the story behind the artifact and it’s a treasure hunt. If there are musical instruments involved, we try to bring the past and present together.”
The first phase of Stuart’s Congress of Country Music will open on Dec. 8, 2022, with The Ellis Theater.
To top off an already busy year, on Nov. 22, Stuart was also inducted into the Musicians Hall of Fame in Nashville along with The Fabulous Superlatives, featuring “Handsome” Harry Stinson, “Cousin” Kenny Vaughan, Mick Conley, and Chris Scruggs.
Photos: Chris Hollo / Schmidt Relations