Stewart Theater - Tolley Student Center - North Carolina State University - Raleigh, NC on September 16, 2000
Well, I made it to North Carolina and back this weekend and it was well worth the trip.
What a FANTASTIC show! The crowd was not very large, but those of us who were there loved every minute of it.
The show began around 8 p.m. Tthey played till about 9 p.m.; did a 15-minute intermission, then another hour. The music that was performed by everyone was masterful.
Jerry Sullivan began by telling the audience that he was doing what he loved to do and that was showing his love for the Lord through his music. He said he was doing what made him happy and it was very obvious he truly loves what he does. You could just feel the love that the Sullivans, their band and Marty all had for each other.
Tammy sang lead on most of the songs that were performed. She has such a powerful and beautiful voice. The pride you could see on her Daddy's face was so great.
Marty was his usual wonderful self. He sang lead on several songs and performed one solo. It was a song he had written and sung for Jerry over the phone and Jerry said it was very stout and he was right. I'm not certain what the name of the song was, but he accompanied himself on the guitar, no other instruments were playing and you could have heard a pin drop in the theater. I told myself I was going to remember the name of the song but I think I got so caught up in all the other music they played, it has temporarily slipped my mind.
Marty played guitar and mandolin both, as he was needed, they also performed a few a capella numbers which brought the house down. His lead on "Get up John" was a definite crowd favorite. You could really tell they were all having a wonderful time on stage together, even if someone accidentally slipped up, forgot the words or whatever, they just laughed and went on, or came back and tried again.
I saw Marty ask Jerry at one point if he was happy and he got a resounding "yes" for an answer. Marty told the crowd how Jerry called him when he was at one of his lowest points in his life, and asked him to come play mandolin with him. It was pretty insightful of how Marty really felt pretty down and out and with the help of these wonderful people he got his life back on track.
You could feel that they really thought of each other as family. After the show, we hung out for a while hoping maybe some of the musicians would appear for autographs and pictures. We weren't disappointed. The guitar player appeared first and I asked if anyone else was coming out and he said he wasn't sure. He thought that Jerry was pretty wore out, as he is still taking chemo treatments for his cancer. Soon Tammy and the mandolin player appeared, I spoke with him and got an autograph then I talked with Tammy for a few moments. I told her I enjoyed her singing and playing on the bass. She's great. I also told her I was a member of Marty's fan club and wondered if he would be coming out. She told me he was supposed to but that he was backstage getting a bite to eat.
A few moments later he came out, still in his black suit, shirt, and boots, but he had managed to lose his tie. Several people went up and spoke with him and had photos made with him. I finally got a chance to go up and get him to augtograph the Sullivan's latest CD that he produced and performed on. I reminded him of who I was. I know he hasn't seen enough of me yet to remember me, but he was still sweet as usual. He told me that he had just performed in Texas with Brad, Gregg and Steve. I'm sure being off the road has been a pleasure but I believe he still misses it sometimes. No pictures were to be allowed in the theatre and I abided by the rules so I have no pictures of the concert. Had I known for certain I would get a chance to see all of them afterwards, I would have kept my camera in the building. Oh well.
I meant to tell him that I could have driven just 30 miles from home on Saturday night and attended the Ricky Skaggs, Dixie Chicks concert, but instead I drove approximately 3-1/2 to 4 hours to see them. I still hope to attend the show in Norris, TN when he performs with Earl Scruggs, but I don't think I can make it to PA to see him perform with the Rock 'n Roll Cowboys (even though I would love to attend).
I wanted to let you know what an awesome group they are and if anyone ever gets a chance to attend one of their performances, by all means, GO! It's worth the time and money.
Review by Serena Wimmer
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