Lorraine Jordan opened Thursday at Christmas in the Smokies as the MC. She and Tim White have been sharing the duties. Lorraine’s father, Royce, is usually the emcee, but is home with a case of pneumonia. We all need to keep Royce in our prayers.
The Dean Osborne Band kicked off the day’s music with his mix of traditional and Gospel bluegrass music. Dean also brought a handmade quilt for the silent auction. Family band, Williamson Branch followed. They are one of Royce’s favorite bands. Royce had won a big teddy bear at a fair, and Lorraine presented it to 8 year old Caroline, the youngest member of the band on his behalf.
Josh Goforth demonstrated the mandolin that Danny Stewart is raffling off. Lorraine and her crew have been hard at work setting up the silent auction to benefit the “My People” fund. There are many items donated by artists, festival vendors, and local businesses. There are also VIP tickets to at least eight bluegrass festivals and events. Donors include Norman Adams, Remington Ryde, Willow Oak, Christmas in the Smokies, Bristol Bluegrass, Neuse River Fest, The Florida Bluegrass Classic, and Lorraine’s Coffeehouse. Three autographed guitars are included in the silent auction. One is autographed by a dozen Grand Ol’ Opry members. The other two are signed by the artists playing at the festival.
Lorraine was joined by one of Dolly Parton’s publicity people. He explained what the Dollywood foundation is doing for the fire victims and thanked the audience for its generosity.
Ralph Stanley II brought the Clinch Mountain Boys to Christmas in the Smokies. Ralph is continuing the mountain music tradition of the Stanley Brothers. Ronnie Reno and the Reno Tradition brought the old sounds of his father to the stage along with Ronnie’s own music. Lorraine joined them for a song.
Host band, Lorraine Jordan and Carolina Road made its first appearance of the festival. The band was festive in red! Ronnie Reno joined them to sing his Boogie Grass Band that was on Lorraine’s project Country Grass. Doyle Lawson and Quicksilver closed out the day’s show with a nearly 2 hour set of music done as only Quicksilver can.
Friday and Saturday bring lots of great entertainment to the Smoky Mountain Convention Center: The Moore Family, Deeper Shade of Blue, Paul Williams and the Victory Trio, The Lonesome River Band, Lorraine Jordan and Carolina Road, Goldwing Express, Mark Templeton and Pocket Change, The Bluegrass Mountaineers, The Garrett Newton Band, Balsam Range, Jimbo Whaley & Greenbrier, and the Malpass Brothers.
Join the fun – listen to great music and bid on some wonderful silent auction items.