Gilley to have two concerts in September in Vidalia

Published 12:01 am Wednesday, July 7, 2010

FERRIDAY — Mickey Gilley is coming home — sort of.

The Ferriday native son is set to give two concerts on Sept. 12 at the Vidalia Conference and Convention Center.

The concerts are a fundraiser for the Delta Music Museum support group, Friends of the Delta Music Museum. The shows are at 2 and 6 p.m.

This is the second year Gilley has done the benefit concerts for the museum. Last year’s shows were at the Arcade Theater in downtown Ferriday, but Museum Director Judith Bingham said after the overwhelming success of the 2009 shows, she knew a bigger venue was needed.

“Last year tickets were sold out two months before the actual concert,” Bingham said. “We kind of made a joke out of it and said we had 600 really happy people, and we certainly had at least 600 really sad people.”

Moving the concert to the Vidalia conference center nearly triples the number of available seats to 1,600.

“We didn’t have hardly any time to even let people know about the show last year before tickets were sold out,” she said. “I had people calling every day up until the day of the show asking about tickets.

“We wanted this year to give more of the community a chance to see Mickey.”

Tickets went on sale July 1 and have been brisk, even without much work spreading the news, Bingham said. Tickets are $40 for reserved seating and $25 for general admission tickets.

That is a testament to how much Gilley is loved in his home community, she said.

“We are so proud to have someone like him from our area,” she said. “We are fortunate to bring him back.

“A lot of people here love country music and that is what Mickey Gilley is all about. He puts on a great, entertaining show.”

Gilley’s recording career began to take off in the 1970s and continued to flourish into the 1980s with hits like “Room Full of Roses” and “Don’t the Girls All Get Prettier at Closing Time.”

In 1976 Gilley took home five Academy of Country Music awards including the award for Song of the Year for “Don’t the Girls Get Prettier at Closing Time,” Entertainer of the Year and Top Male Vocalist of the Year.

He had 39 top 10 hits on the country charts, 17 of which reached the No. 1 position.

Currently Gilley is performing regularly at his Mickey Gilley Theatre in Branson, Mo.

Gilley will bring with him his Urban Cowboy band and comedian Joey Riley from his Branson shows, Bingham said.

She said the show is sure to rival ones Gilley and his band put on in Branson.

“You’re really getting a Branson show without having to travel all that way,” she said. “He always puts on a good show for his home crowd.”

Tickets can be purchased by calling the Delta Music Museum at 318-757-9999.