Folks lately I have been writing and supporting the Midnite Jamboree hosted by the Ernest Tubb Record Shops. Well my dear readers the time has come for us to give back to them..because we are very very close to loosing it forever. How much more Country Music history do we have to loose before we have nothing left? We lost half of Printer’s Alley and Little Jimmy Dickens in one week. Please folks YOU have a VOICE and I hope after reading my friends letter to us you will act now and help us. THIS LETTER is written and given to me by Country Music Legend Glenn Douglass Tubb. If nobody listens then we will loose this precious piece of history.
THE MIDNITE JAMBOREE
For those of you who are not aware of the historical importance of the Midnite Jamboree; I thought I would give you a brief history of the show. It was started in 1947 by my uncle, Ernest Tubb, the same year he opened the Ernest Tubb Record Shop and it was also the same year that he became the first Country music artist to play in Carnegie Hall in New York City. That was a pretty eventful year for him. He opened the record shop so that he and other Country music artists would have a place to sell their records. Most record shops back then wouldn’t sell Country music, or, as it was called back then, “hillbilly” music. He also started the Midnite Jamboree as a means to advertise his records and the records of his fellow artists. He also decided that the young artists who were trying to get the record companies to listen to them, needed a platform from which they could be heard, not just by the record company producers here in Nashville, New York and Los Angeles but by the public all over America. The Midnite Jamboree came on right after the Grand Ole Opry every Saturday night, at midnight. And at midnight, WSM Radio’s 50,000 watts really reached out because at midnight most all of the smaller stations went off the air and WSM became a clear channel station, reaching more people than the Grand Ole Opry did. This was a powerful tool for letting people know about the new records being offered by Ernest and the other artists. Down through the years, I think most of the Grand Ole Opry members have sung on the Midnite Jamboree at least once. Other artists have sung there too. Even Elvis Presley, the King of rock and roll, sang there when he was starting out. I remember Tennessee Ernie stopped in Nashville and sang on the MJ when he was on his way to California in 1947. This was when the record shop was on Commerce Street. It didn’t stay there very long because it was just too small. The people would walk up from the Grand Ole Opry to listen to the MJ and they would have to stand out on the sidewalk and out in the street to hear the show. The police finally said that something had to be done because the people were interfering with the flow of traffic. So, one night, my dad rented a flat bed truck and me and my brothers moved the entire record shop down to 417 Broadway where it is still doing business today. It is the second oldest radio show in the world, second only to the Grand Ole Opry. This year, in May, will mark the 68th year it has been broadcasting. The people who have sung on the stage of the MJ would read like a Who’s Who of Country music entertainers, some of who have gone on to be superstars and country music legends. Anyone who has been paying attention to what is happening on the internet has to know that the internet has broke the back of the record shop business because people are now downloading music for free instead of buying the records from a record shop. Consequently, all the big record store chains have gone out of business. Songwriters, artists, publishers and record companies have all suffered devastating losses also. Songwriting is now a hobby for most of us instead of an occupation. But the Ernest Tubb Record Shop was the sponsor for the MJ; it paid the cost for putting the show on the air every Saturday night; so when people stopped buying records, the record shop was no longer able to pay the cost for putting the program on the air. The bill usually runs between $2,200.00 and $2,500.00 each Saturday night, depending on how many musicians are on the stage on any given night. Since the record shop was no longer able to support the program, David McCormick, the owner and CEO of the E.T. Record Shops, started paying the bills for the program out of his own pocket, determined to keep the legacy that Uncle Ernest started alive. Now, he is no longer able to bear this financial burden alone. The Midnite Jamboree is a piece of Country Music history and I believe it should be preserved, just like any other National Treasure. Some friends and I have started a Midnite Jamboree Association which we hope will help pay the weekly costs for keeping this show on the air. There have already been iron on patches designed with the logo for the MJA, hat pins, lapel pins, tee shirts, caps, neat membership cards and other perks (about $75.00 worth) which is what the annual dues are for membership, so it’s really a good deal. You get a bunch of neat stuff and you help save a Country music historical treasure. And when you wear your cap with the MJA patch on it, or the hat pin or lapel pin, you will be showing everyone that you belong to an organization that is helping preserve and important part of Country music history. If we can get a thousand members, that will be enough to keep things going for the next generation. To join or get more info, you can send an email to Ken Mosher at firstname.lastname@example.org or Glenn Douglas Tubb at <email@example.com or write to The Midnite Jamboree Association, P.O. Box 159326, Nashville, TN 37215. Please make your checks payable to David McCormick or Glenn Douglas Tubb because we do not have all the paperwork completed to open the account for the MJA. All members will receive a copy of the song I wrote and recorded for the show I hosted on February 14th called THE MIDNITE JAMBOREE. You will also receive a copy of the Christmas CD that Dottie and I recorded just before I got sick and had to spend Christmas in the hospital. We didn’t get a chance to advertise the CD or try to sell it because I was busy trying to stay alive. So, we decided to make it a gift to everyone who joins. All the songs are original. All of my CDs are always filled with my own compositions. We are busy recording a new Gospel CD at this time. If we get it finished in time, we’ll include a copy of it also. Please help us keep this tradition going. It would be a real shame to see it all go under after David has worked and sacrificed so much for so long to keep it going. Thank you all for your time and attention. God bless you all.
Living for Him,