Marty Stuart's Late Night Jan Photos
Two hours into the night, at Midnight, Stuart and Stubbs requested that the check be brought out to present to the beneficiary of the night, MusiCares. Stuart was able to present a check for $12,000 to the organization, which provides funds to musicians or their families needs in crisis.
Porter Wagoner received a standing ovation before even singing a note. The rapport between Stuart and Wagoner was very evident when Stuart began playing straight man to Wagoner's comedic material. Wagoner spent four months in the hospital in 2006 following surgery for an aneurysm and was fortunate to survive much less record a new album with Stuart in the producing chair. Wagoner sat for a duet with Stuart called "Be Careful Of Stones That You Throw." But when he stood from his chair to exit the stage, so did the audience once again. Stuart and the Superlatives launched into "Wagonmaster 1 & 2" from the new CD utilizing the two bookends for Wagoner's departure from the stage. Demonstrating the admiration he has for the musicians performing on the show, Stuart requested that steel guitarist Fred Newell also perform a solo with the Superlatives.
Following Newell's performance, was the first surprise guest of the night. Not sure that she is really a surprise because since their wedding in 1997, Stuart is rarely seen without Connie Smith. Even ten years later, they're still giddy when around each other especially when performing the duet, written together, "Hearts Like Ours." Smith brought along her own friend as well,Barbara Fairchild. Fairchild called her husband, Roy Morris, out to perform her hit "Teddy Bear" with herself, Smith and Stuart.
The surprises just started pouring out from the wings at that point, Stuart would also call out Jon Langford with Paul Burch & the WPA Ballclub, Raul Malo (The Mavericks), Chris Scruggs (BR549), Chuck Mead(BR549) and Audley Freed (Black Crowes). Malo's acoustic performance of the classic "When I'm Calling You" was so beautiful that Stuart came out with his best French accent saying that it made him "want to kiss Connie Smith right in ze face." Scruggs, Mead and Freed arrived on stage together with Scruggs racing between duties of vocalizing and playing his steel guitar.
Eric Church seemed to have brought his own fans to the party. Arriving on stage while Stubbs and Stuart were still discussing MusiCares, audience members began handing him copies of the local Nashville Scene newspaper, on which Church happened to be the cover photo this particular week, for autographs. Church's songwriting background seems to come into play when he opts to change arrangements on the spot. For the last song of his set, he decided to do his first single "How 'Bout You" and interjected verses from songs by the Rolling Stones ("Satisfaction"), Bill Monroe ("Blue Moon Of Kentucky"), Waylon Jennings (Are You Sure Hank Done It This Way?") and even a Ram Jam ("Black Betty Bamalam" - the original version was done by Leadbelly). Church may have signed off his solo performance with his first top ten single, but he wasn't finished. He would return to the stage along with special guest guitarist-singer-songwriter, Jedd Hughes, to perform two more songs with Stuart including "The Whiskey Ain't Workin'."
Stuart then decided to do something Lester Flatt had done years before when he brought up a young fan that had been coming to Stuart performances for years. Paul Blake was introduced to perform a song that he wrote called "Simple Mistake" and his nerves were evident, but surely it's a night that he'll never forget. Stuart would sign the stage portion off for the night at two in the morning with the appropriate "Angels Rock Me To Sleep." Stuart would then join fans on the second floor of the Ryman to sign autographs for as long as they wanted him there. It's an annual concert that's only destined to improve with age just as Stuart himself has.
Marty Stuart's Late Night Jam is normally held at the Ryman Auditorium and benefits MusiCares, an organization who's services provide critical assistance for music people in times of need. If you would like to make a donation to MusiCares, you can send a check to MusiCares 1904 Wedgewood Avenue; Nashville, TN 37212.
Article Written & Submitted by Michelle Durham