Country Chatter

Randy Travis made Opry debut 31 years ago


It was 31 years ago today, March 7, 1986, that Randy Travis made his Grand Ole Opry debut. The appearance came three months before his debut album, Storms of Life, was released on Warner Bros.

Travis, was introduced by Little Jimmy Dickens during his Opry debut and sang the Hank Williams classic “I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry.” The performance not only was historical, but it also helped pave the way for him to become an official member of the Opry on Dec. 20, 1986. Travis was introduced on that night by Ricky Skaggs, and performed his No. 1 hit “Diggin’ Up Bones,” from Storms of Life.

“Every time you walk on the Opry stage is a special feeling that I wish I knew how to describe,” Travis said. “There is just a wonderful energy on that stage … I am very proud to be a member of the Opry.”

Travis went on to be one of the most successful country artists of all time, selling more than 25 million albums and earning 29 Top 10 singles, with 16 going all the way to No. 1. The North Carolina native celebrated his 25th anniversary of becoming an Opry member in 2011 with a star-studded bash. Performers included Josh Turner, Carrie Underwood and John Anderson.

“It’s amazing to me to be celebrating my 25th anniversary in the music business on this stage because of the way I grew up and what I grew up listening to,” the country legend stated during the celebration.

Take a listen to the song that Travis made his Opry debut with 31 years ago.

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