Grand Ole Opry Star Takes The Spotlight In Lindsay

This appeared on - April 29, 2015

Area country music fans are in for a rare treat when Marty Stuart and His Fabulous Superlatives take the Academy Theatre for Performing Arts stage on Thursday, May 7.

With five Grammys® in hand, a proud member of Nashville’s Grand Ole Opry - not to mention to fellow Opry star Connie Smith - and member of the County Music Foundation, Mr. Stuart is ultimately ‘living the dream.’

“I started my first band when I was nine,” said Mr. Stuart. “I was serious about it then. I was already practicing my autograph.”

Watching such legends and mentors as Porter Wagoner, Johnny Cash and Carl Perkins perform, Mr. Stuart knew he was “where I belonged” when, at age 13 he found himself playing music all across North America with bluegrass legend Lester Flatt and later went on in bands for many of his idols as well as Bill Monroe and Jerry Lee Lewis.

Coming from Mississippi, Mr. Stuart could have followed virtually any genre of music, but chose country for the way it touched his heart and soul. “With country, I could look outside and see the stories that those songs were telling in the faces of the people that met, in my family,” said Mr. Stuart. “It’s so rewarding to know that, 43 years later, it’s all still viable; still relevant.”

Mr. Stuart refers to his band, The Fabulous Superlatives - Kenny Vaughan, Harry Stinson and new member Chris Scruggs - as “the band of a life time – my legacy band”. He continues to record, with one of his most recent projects being recorded in Nashville’s famous Studio B where so many smash country hits were cut by Charley Pride, Dolly Parton and Waylon Jennings.

When Mr. Stuart needs even more inspiration, he turns back to the two artists with whom he cut his first two records, Lester Flatts and Earl Scruggs.

“Having access to the old Masters early on in my career was instrumental in forging who I am today,” said Mr. Stuart, adding, when it comes to who inspires him today, the list is pretty long. “There’s so much to look at, so many artists that are making great music today and inspiring, not just me, but the next generation. Social media has had a great impact.”

But, notes Mr. Stuart, there comes a point when “you have to look at ‘what makes me tick’ and follow your own heart. That’s what defines any artist.”

While it’s the best way to stay focused, it also presents the greatest challenge, believes Mr. Stuart.

“Sometimes my heart took me to the wrong place. But what’s important is having the courage to follow your heart even when that happens,” he continued.

By Catherine Whitnall

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