I hardly know where to start. Tuesday night, May 5, we held our first-ever Concert for a Cure here in Unicoi County. The concert was a joint effort by the Relay For Life Teams of our county, and we just can’t say enough wonderful things about Randy Houser and Matt Stillwell.
These guys put on a fantastic show. And they spent so much time with their fans, signing autographs, posing for pictures, and just talking to every one as if we were their neighbors. Talk about open, friendly and down-to-earth. Randy and Matt are definitely that.
A little four-year-old named Austin came up to me when he first arrived at the school and said, “Can I go backstage?” I said, I think we can arrange it. The little thing told me he liked Matt Stillwell. But I didn’t realize how much. Not until I saw Matt pull up outside, and I took little Austin (and his dad), over to Matt. Matt talked to him, we took some pictures, and Austin told Matt that he could sing “Shine.”
Later that night, Austin got his chance. Matt was on stage, Austin was in the audience. Matt sang so many of my favorite songs, and I can’t wait to see him again. He will be at the Orange Peel in Asheville, N.C. on May 23 – filming a video, in fact! And the will be back at Capone’s in Johnson City (where I first saw him) on July 3.
When Matt was about to start “Shine”, he got Austin up on stage with him and handed him a microphone. Austin and Matt sang the whole song – what a cute duet that was! The guys at my office video taped it, and I’m hoping to be able to get that up for you soon.
Randy sang, long. He was great. He talked to the audience, told funny stories, and of course we all got to hear that infectious laugh of his. I think people who have only heard “Anything Goes” and “Boots On” on the radio were very pleasantly surprised with Randy’s show. He’s grown a lot since I first saw him at Winged Deer Park in Johnson City nearly a year ago. The show was great, and he is such a great entertainer. I think that audience would have stayed as long as Randy would keep singing. (Left: Randy and Matt, with Unicoi County Sheriff Kent Harris (third from left), and a few officers from the U.C. Sheriff’s Department)
I think I’m just going to get some pictures up here for you all this morning. I’m you’ll be seeing a lot more of Matt Stillwell and Randy Houser on Country’s Chatter in the future. By the way, local people, Randy is scheduled for opening night at our Appalachian Fair in Gray (Monday, Aug. 24, 2009). I know you won’t want to miss that. Do I live in the right part of the country, or what! Here’s some pictures.
Thank you again, Randy Houser, Matt Stillwell, Todd Lombardo (Randy’s unbelievable guitarist), the WXBQ Rabbit, Bill Hagy and Reggie Neel from WXBQ, Todd Ambrose with AmbroSound, the Unicoi County Sheriff’s Department, the Carnegie Hotel in Johnson City, and to all the fans who came to see a great show and meet two super entertainers. I definitely have a lot of ‘Thank You’ notes to get out. This event could not have been put together without countless hours of work by the dedicated Relay team members of Unicoi County. It was a really fun benefit concert – and of course, all proceeds are going to The American Cancer Society.
I better get to work. I’ll talk to you all real soon. Drop me a line when you have a chance!