After performing at Renfro Valley Entertainment Center last night, one has to ask why the Oak Ridge Boys are not nominated for Entertainer of the Year and Vocal Group of the Year. The energy of the group and tradition of bringing family entertainment is something you will not see anywhere else.
Coming out on stage with “The Boys Are Back,” written by Shooter Jennings, the crowd was quick to start clapping and cheering as each Oak Ridge Boy came on stage. Just like a ringleader, Joe Bonsall presented their greeting and prepared the crowd for a fun filled night.
Having a solid performance, the Oak Ridge Boys gained not one, but three outstanding ovations from the crowd. One of which was the tearful song “Sacrifice For Me.” The patriotic flair saluting our troops, as well as those that perished in the World Trade Center saving our loved ones.
Each individual member showcased their own vocal abilities with their lead songs. William Lee Golden shined in “Beautiful Blue Bird.” Richard Sterban, with the deepest bass in country music, led with “Dream On.” Duane Allen sang with feeling with “Seven Nation Army”. Joe Bonsall added his own piece of fun with “Gonna Take a Lot of River.”
The Oak Ridge Boys played a mixture of classic hits, as well as new songs “Whatcha Gonna Do.” One of the biggest and chilling moments was when the Oak Ridge Boys sang “Father Away.” Prior to the song, Bonsall indicated that they were asked to speak about Glen Campbell for a special documentary. The director asked the group what song they would sing in honor of Glen Campbell. They would quickly mention “Farther Along,” and sing a bit of it. Immediately the director said that would be the end of the documentary.
Before the crowd knew it, the evening was coming to a close after more than one and a half hours of entertainment. The crowd got to their feet for “Elvira” and then danced along to “Bobbie Sue.” As the last note was played, those in the audience cheered for the true entertainers in the country music industry.
Jessica Blankenship is the owner and founder of Kentucky Country Music website. The Berea College graduate has been a music journalist and historian for over 20 years. She enjoys providing concert photography, reviews, historical articles, red carpet event coverage, and exclusive interviews of your favorite musicians. Jessica is proud to be a Kentucky Colonel and alumni of the FFA and 4-H Clubs. In 2018, she was named one of Laurel County’s Ten Under 40 Award Recipients. In 2019, she was a member of the Inaugural class of BRIGHT Kentucky as part of Leadership Kentucky. She has been featured on the Kentucky Music Preview podcast, Hollercast podcast, Overtones radio show, WFKY Nashville News Roundup, KET, and more. Beyond music, she enjoys traveling, helping her community, collecting gnomes, and Volkswagens.