Bobby Bare Celebrates Birthday At Opry
Just a few short weeks ago, Garth Brooks appeared on the Grand Ole Opry stage to welcome its newest member, Chris Janson. As emotional as Janson was about the whole thing, Brooks was equally so, because the Opry means that much to him.
So when the Opry had some news to share with one of its scheduled performers, Brooks was the person they called on.
On Saturday, country legend Bobby Bare celebrated a special night with his friends, family, and a packed Opry crowd. It was his 83rd birthday, and the night was a joyous one.
Since it was Bare’s birthday, the Opry decided to give him one doozy of a gift, and that gift was delivered by Brooks.
Brooks Brings A Birthday Surprise
After he performed a few songs, Bare and the Opry crowd were equally surprised to see Brooks stroll out on the stage. As Bare later told The Tennessean, he thought that maybe Brooks was there to present a cake to him that the Opry made to celebrate his birthday. The Opry has given artists birthday cakes before, so that thought was a good assumption.
But the Opry had something far sweeter than a cake to gift to Bare on his birthday.
With a bit of a chuckle, Brooks looked at Bare and asked, “You have absolutely no idea what’s about to happen, do you?” Of course, Bare said he was completely “in the dark.”
Then, Garth moved into a short speech to explain exactly why he was there:
“I was standing right here when I inducted the newest member of the Grand Ole Opry, a kid named Chris Janson. Sweet guy. He sat in this circle of wood and he cried like a baby. And you know why he cried; because he gets it. He gets what it’s like to be a member of the family of the Grand Ole Opry. You get it…The Grand Ole Opry is family. Family is forever. So Mr. Bare, young man…it is my honor, it is the Grand Ole Opry’s honor, to officially welcome you back, the great Bobby Bare, to the Grand Ole Opry.“
Coming Back Home
Did you catch what Brooks said there? He said, “welcome you back,” and there’s a reason why. You see, this wasn’t the first time Bare was ever invited to join the Opry.
Bare became an Opry member in the early 1960s and his membership continued into the 1970s before it lapsed. In recent years, Bare has returned to be a fairly regular performer at the Opry, and always draws large crowds.
Because of this, the Opry decided now was the perfect time to welcome Bare back as a member.
In case you didn’t realize it, this is a history-making decision on the Opry’s part. While Bare isn’t the only person to lose Opry membership and then be invited back (such a thing happened to Little Jimmy Dickens and George Jones), he is now the only living artist who has.
Bare was completely stunned by the news. The weight of the moment certainly wasn’t lost on him, as he said, “Being a member of the Opry is probably everybody in country music’s dream. I’ve realized all those dreams I’ve ever had.”
You can watch the emotional moment that Brooks welcomed Bare back into the Opry in the video below.