Stories

All Roads Lead to the Opry: Reba McEntire and Vince Gill

Two of our favorite Okies are stepping onto the Grand Ole Opry stage on July 18th. In honor of their performance, we thought it was only fitting to take a (socially distanced) walk down memory lane and trace their musical paths to the Opry.

We’re Heading to Oklahoma…

Opry members Reba McEntire and Vince Gill are both Oklahoma natives, and while they’ve made quite the impact on country music, they’ve also made their mark on their home state.

Only seems appropriate to start today on Vince Gill Avenue. Oklahoma City, OK – Hey Vince, How does it feel to have a street named after you in your home state?

Vince Gill Avenue

Oklahoma City’s Bricktown Entertainment District is the home of Vince Gill Avenue, aptly named after one of the city’s own country music stars.

Byron’s Fiddle Shop is owned by Byron Berline, who has been friends with Vince since he joined Byron’s band, Sundance, during the early days of his career. Guthrie, OK – Vince has been known to stop by the shop and play with the locals.

Byron’s Fiddle Shop

Byron Berline, the owner of Byron’s Fiddle Shop in Guthrie, Oklahoma, has fond memories of his time spent with Vince Gill.

Vince joined Byron’s band, Sundance, during the early years of his career and has been known to stop by from time to time to play with the locals.

Reba performed live at McSwain Theatre before she was discovered. Ada, OK

McSwain Theatre

Reba performed at the McSwain Theatre in Ada, Oklahoma before she was discovered by Western singer Red Steagall at the National Finals Rodeo in 1974, singing the national anthem.

In 1976, Reba graduated from Southeastern Oklahoma State University. She studied elementary education and minored in music.

Southeastern Oklahoma State University

In 1976, Reba graduated from Southeastern Oklahoma State University. She majored in elementary education and minored in music —  that music minor certainly worked out for her in the end.

1977: Reba made her Opry debut on September 17th. Grand Ole Opry, Nashville, TN

Reba’s Grand Ole Opry Debut

“The Grand Ole Opry means to me: history of country music.” —  Reba

On September 17, 1977, Reba made her Grand Ole Opry debut. She was inducted as an Opry member nearly nine years later on January 17, 1986.

Vince’s road also led to the Opry, where he was inducted as a member in 1991.

Vince’s Grand Ole Opry Induction

Vince Gill made his Opry debut on July 29, 1989 and was inducted as an Opry member in 1991.

In more recent years, Vince has become an eloquent spokesman for the Grand Ole Opry. 

Then ... Now... they return to the stage together tonight (July 18, 2020)!

Watch the show!

Join Vince Gill and Reba McEntire as they celebrate their 40-year friendship with live performances on the Opry stage Saturday, July 18th, on Circle TV, hosted by Bobby Bones. 

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