Patriot Park, Pigeon Forge, TN on July 4, 2002

We got to the park around 4:30 and it was already getting crowded. I looked for LaDonna and Mary. I finally found them on the second row, right in front of the stage. Luckily, there was room right down from them. Anyway, it was great seats. We had our folding chairs and a small cooler of drinks. It was very hot but a little breeze. It was a typical July 4th in the park.

There was a group on and they were very good. We had several groups to listen to and the skies got cloudy and we thought it was going to rain. They started to cover things and the wind got up a lot and it really cooled things off. We had a few light sprinkles but not enough to soak us -- just cool us off.

After all the groups did their thing, finally the moment came for Marty. The air was filled with excitement and electricity and I don't think it was from the storm. The band came out and then the announcement came for Marty Stuart. WOWOW!!!! is all I can say because he looked fantastic!!! Dressed in black leather pants, white shirt and black jacket with silver sparkles on it. He had a peach color tie on, or it might have been pink. I was really too busy looking at that beautiful smile. He was smiling and there was a sparkle in his eyes. He was laughing and dancing all over the place to the music.

He played some new songs and some of the old ones. I can't really remember the list of all of them but maybe Mary or La Donna can. I can only remember some of them he did: "Hey Baby," "The Whiskey Ain't Workin'," "Long Black Veil," and one of the new ones I especially liked was "I Surrender." It was beautiful. He also did "Burn Me Down" and "Hillbilly Rock." There were several more. Sorry, I just can't remember. Marty has a way of making me do that. I was very impressed with the new guys. I hate to say it because I really liked the other guys. But this new band is really, really good. They are very good musicians. They each did a solo and were great. Marty was so energized from them, too, I think. He seemed so full of energy.

He came back and did an encore and then it was over. As always, too short. But well worth the wait. He was exceptionally good, I thought. Then the announcement came for the meet and greet. Well that was what I was waiting for. We made our way to the tent where we were to meet and it was dark. They had the fireworks and they were good, but Marty was the firecracker I was wanting to see. Finally, here he comes, dressed in a black tank top and black jeans. Looking mighty fine.

LaDonna and I had our Marty shirts on and LaDonna told him we were his bookends. He smiled and said, "Hey Brenda," and I'm telling you that was my dose of medicine. He gave me a big hug and asked how I was doing. Little did he know how great I was doing at that time. I said, "Fine." He signed another picture for me. By this time, they had finally turned a spotlight over to where we could see. We talked a few more minutes and before I started to leave, I said, "Marty, I need another hug," since it had been so long since I had one and he gave me a big tight one. He signed my husband's shirt and off we went. Mary and LaDonna and a couple of others had their visits. Then he was going to sign autographs for anyone that wanted one. There seemed to be about 40 or 50 people in line. He was signing for everyone. People were impressed with that, I think. It was a great show. Better than I had seen in a long while. The crowd was very responsive to him. I think he will be back on top again before you know it. If you get a chance, to see him. He is dynamite.

Review by Brenda Metz, Knoxville, TN

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