Country Comedian Still on Top
Stage Life Magazine is back with another great story - this time the beloved "Ray Stevens" !
The Country Singer Comedian is a fan favorite all over the World, with decades of hits under his belt.
Tonight fans are at the famous "Florida Theater", in downtown Jacksonville, a beautiful classical place to see a show.
Fans are in their seats, the lights go down, and the legend steps on stage and walks up to the microphone with a smile.
Ray Stevens has been singing his famous country comedy hits for over 50 years, with the expertise to deliver a great show.
He was resides in Clarkdale Georgia, and enjoys living a easy life down South with his family.
As I looked around the theater, I noticed a wonderful mix of young and old - yep, folks tonight are not gonna miss this show !
Most every seat was sold out, which was a compliment to just how good Ray Stevens is , and how much he is truly loved by all.
Steven's brought in a seven member band to back him up, a drummer, a bassist, saxophonist, two guitarists, and two backup singers !
The band was very tight, playing on que with Steven's hand gestures throughout the night. He would stop and tell a story and start again.
The stories were laid out with easy to understand words, and everyone was in tune to what was being said. He had us all in his hands all night.
I was raised with country music myself, and remember so many T.V. shows with Stevens playing his famous hits - year after year as a kid.
We loved all the hits - and he has plenty - and everyone of them was a National Treasure of a song !
Tonight fans were clapping loudly after every song, and they too - also knew every song, and every verse he sang.
We got to see and hear the legend sing all the fan favorites, and also some new songs that were applauded and were instant hits !
The songs included tonight were - "Guitarzan", "Mississippi Squirrel Revival", "Ahab the Arab", "Misty," all well known classics.
He also included the rare hit - "It's Me Again Margaret" - and everyone was laughing and blushing with his clean comedy bits.
He surprised everyone when he jumped into the soul searching "Everything is Beautiful", a most cherished heartfelt ballad.
At this moment, the oohs and aahs were heard when he was singing this song - we were all as one as people singing along loudly without asking.
Fans were rolling along with Stevens every step of the way, singing and swaying in their seats to his beautiful voice.
The hits were coming and going so fast, it was head spinning fun - with Steven's dancing and joking between the songs.
He was telling some great whoppers tonight, and the fans loved every minute of it. They wanted everything they could get from him.
He sat down a few numbers to play his famous piano - he is very pleasing to listen to. He knows his music and fans very well.
Suddenly, after all the rollercoaster riding of so many classic hits, he introduces the band, and they all take their bows for the fans.
Then Stevens jumps again in high gear and we hear a emergency radio beacon over the stage - the crowd erupts with applause !
The people came tonight to hear all the hits, but this one was the house favorite - The comedy classic called "The Streak" !
Oh yeah, fans are singing, kids are dancing, granny is tapping her feet to the beat of this "Platinum Hit" that fans adore so much.
This was so much fun, we all had a great time tonight - fans were excited to see one of the most beloved artist in country music today.
Steven's ended his show with a fever pitch that was so wonderfully needed in our lives - He was surely an Angel to all of us in the theater.
Fans did not stop clapping, long after Steven's had taken all his bows and left the stage. The band played on till he was almost out of the building.
Then fans chanted his name over and over again, clapping loudly, and it was uplifting to see the promoters go get him to come back for a encore.
The fans were not leaving tonight without another song from Ray Stevens - and this really meant alot to Stevens - looking very appreciative.
He came back on stage, looking very happy to the response, and said humbly that he normally doesn't do encores - and that this meant so much to him.
His bandmates were very proud of him, as the fans were standing there ground to make sure he knew he was loved all the way out the door.
He sang another new song that had everyone satisfied - another moment to cherish forever.
The show ended with more applause and the stage manager rushed the stage to escort him to this limo van awaiting him outside.
The fans were so much fun tonight, I felt love in the air, happiness that was needed in our lives. This one show meant a lot to everyone.
Ray Stevens is truly a country legend with so many hits and so many great stories, I hope he keeps touring - till forever ends for us all.
We need positive fun loving people like Stevens in our daily lives - he is a Angel - a beautiful man inside and out.
Stage Life Magazine is very proud to honor Ray Stevens in print - for all our fans that truly love him so, as much as we do.
Thank you to Ray Stevens, his management team, also Scott Kennel, and the famous Florida Theater for a wonderful night to remember.
Written By: Leon Jonjock
Here's a few links to Ray Stevens -
Personal Webpage = http://www.raystevens.com/
Facebook = https://www.facebook.com/raystevensmusic1707/
Facebook Videos = https://www.facebook.com/raystevensmusic1707/app/212104595551052/