Tonight some friends helped Sandy and me celebrate my up-coming 50th birthday by taking us out for dinner and then to a Kenny Rogers Christmas concert. I didn't know he did Christmas music. When I was just a kid, he had a band called "Kenny Rogers and the First Edition." Over the years, the former "Rocker" turned "Country" singer has mellowed. Tonight, he began his concert by forewarning us that he wouldn't be singing "The Gambler" or "Lucille." He said neither of them really fit in with "O Holy Night" and "Little Town of Bethlehem."
We had some of the best seats in the house. In fact, we sat two rows behind Kenny's wife; she had their little twins with her -- they appeared less than a year old. I actually got to say "Hi" to her, but one of our friends got invited back stage to meet Rogers himself! During the concert Kenny went down into the crowd and another of our friends got chosen to sing; I hope he doesn't quit his day job!
Kenny was very vocal about resisting the pressure to take Christmas out of the public arena. I was glad to hear him say that -- more than once. The show was family oriented, clean, and pleasant. A couple of choirs from our local high schools, Shaw and Northside, provided some of the choral back-up vocals. I don't know how many deals are left in the aging Gambler's deck, but tonight he held a full house in his hands.