It’s January 2020! The new year has come with new challenges and new opportunities. The past year had many exciting days and disappointments as well. We were guest singers on the Mike Huckabee show on January 4 with our friend, James Burton.
January 9-February 2 was our European tour with Dennis Jale. Dennis is always such a great host and the tour was awesome!
On March 31, I was a guest for the Franklin Elvis Festival in Franklin, TN. I shared my gospel songs from the piano and the EAS Band from Chicago accompanied me. They are such fine musicians and genuinely good people who just want to make good music. It was a great weekend.
On May 24 the Imperials traveled to Gatlinburg, TN for GaitherFest. We shared the stage with the finest singers/musicians you will ever hear. Bill Gaither always assembles the finest group of singers/speakers in the nation. I was challenged by two great speakers that weekend to be the best I can be for the kingdom of God.
We flew to Denmark on July 31 and were there for Henrik Knudsen’s Garden Party until Aug 5. On August 10, we flew to Wichita, KS, rented a car and drove to Arkansas, Kansas for a gospel concert. They pronounce it Arkansas and they will remind you of its correct pronunciation. I pronounced it like I thought it should be and I immediately got a response from the audience. After begging for mercy, they stopped throwing objects at us. Seriously, they were very nice to us and the concert went without a problem.
We drove to Memphis on August 15 for the Elvis weekend. The big-screen show was on Friday and our gospel concert was on Saturday night.
We helped our son, Jesse, move into his dorm on August 22. He is a freshman at Tennessee Tech U and has a roommate, Dale Fox, whose home is not more than 5 miles from ours.
On October 12, Tina, Leah, and I drove to Murray, KY where we checked into the hotel for the night. Sunday morning early I sang special music for the First Baptist Church. I did a mid-afternoon concert at the church. Mostly seniors came but the response was gratifying. I shared my heart and my music. One elderly lady told Tina that she used to listen to Christian music but had put it aside. After the concert, she said to her that she has a renewed interest in listening again and she purchased several of CDs for her home. If you fill your house with Christian music, you will be encouraged in your walk with Christ. There are many to choose from. It doesn’t have to be mine. Just DO IT! That’s not an ad for Nike! You will be glad you did.
On November 13, the Imperials were a part of the James Burton Foundation concert at the Nashville Shermorhorn auditorium downtown. We shared the stage with Jason Scheff of Chicago who asked us to sing 25 or 6 or more, with Larry Stewart of Restless Heart, where we sang with him on one of his hits, I’ll Still Be Loving You, and also a Glen Campbell medley of Wichita Lineman and Gentle on My Mind. The last segment of the show was the Elvis segment and we sang The Wonder of You with James Burton and Ronnie Tutt. The finale was with all those who sang that night. Tanya Tucker came out and was featured on Burning Love. I have to say it was a night to remember. I am hopeful it will be a PBS special this year.
Last month we flew to Austria for our Christmas shows with Dennis Jale. Tina was able to go this time. So we left home and spent two weeks in and around Vienna, Austria. Tina got to the shop and the group got to sing. We did a state-run TV show for the first time. On our last day there, we took a train to Salzburg and spent the day touring that beautiful city. We visited Mozart’s birthplace and toured the beautiful church that was used in The Sound of Music. We also toured Salzburg Fortress began in the 1200s. Many pictures and memories were made.
I pray 2020 is a great and glorious year for you. Many are hurting. Remember to be thankful for health and provision. As the song says, “Give thanks with a grateful heart”. Happy New Year!