The Royals Came To The Belle
It was a great crowd Sunday night when the Royal Family came to the Belle Mehus Auditorium in Bismarck. At least by my definition of the hierarchy of Country Music, I consider Lorrie Morgan and her son Jesse Whitley Royalty.
I tend to be a bit old school when it comes to the history of Country Music. The roots run deep, back to the Ryman Auditorium and the Grand Ole Opry stages. In fact, The Belle stage isn't dis-similar to that of the Ryman's. When I think of all of the history surrounding the genre, Lorrie was there from the beginning. As a little girl, she sat on those stages and watched in the wings when Country Music was in it's infancy.
Now, the next generation of Royalty is cued up to continue the family tradition. Lorrie is on the road with her son, Jesse Keith Whitley. If you know your Country Music History, yes, it's Country legend Keith Whitley's son and the offspring of Lorrie and Keith's fairy tale marriage before his tragic death.
For me this family affair comes full circle from when I first met Jesse while running one of the Hard Rock stages at CMA Fest and had the privilege of having this up and coming kid on my stage. He and I hit it off and I've enjoyed following his career as a song writer and performer. I had the pleasure of meeting his father before his passing and have known his mother casually through the industry and over the years. Now I see Jesse getting ready to carry on the family tradition. Morgan-Whitley carries a pedigree right up there with Williams when it comes to the History of Country Music.