Music show

Watch This Pasadena Music Show to Hear ’50s Favorites

Hometown Opry’s popular 1950s show will cap off the band’s year-long post-pandemic comeback with guest artists Heath Spencer Phillip and Jivin’ Gene Bourgeois at 7:30 p.m. June 17 at the East County Activity Center Harris in Pasadena.

“We just added a dance floor,” said Taylor Brooks, the community facility manager at 7430 Spencer Highway.

“Now people can get up and dance with their partner or they can line dance. I look forward to two to four hundred people cramming in for it.

Other headliners on June 17 will include Deer Park’s Jerry Locke and Pasadena’s Pat Varley.

Locke will sing “Blue Monday,” “My Blue Heaven” and “Hello Josephine,” among others, said Pasadena’s Don Wester, who began producing the Hometown Opry 26 years ago at the Jimmy Burke Activity Center in Deer Park.

“That’s a hoot,” Wester said of Locke.

What: Opry’s Hometown 1950s Show

Where: East Harris County Activity Center, 7430 Spencer Highway, Pasadena

When: 7:30 p.m. Friday, June 17

Admission: $15 (presale $12)

Information: 713-274-2222;

Varley, who will sing tunes made famous by Brenda Lee, returned last fall after living in Louisiana for 12 years with an even greater appreciation for Hometown Opry.

“It’s a Cadillac opry,” she said, praising the group of studio musicians Andy Lingenfelter and Jimmy Lingenfelter on horns, Rick Burton (drums), Johnny Foster (keyboards), Karl Hlavinka (backing vocals), Rick Robertson (bass) and Wayne “Animal” Turner on lead guitar.

Turner recently replaced the late Randy Cornor of Deer Park, who died March 24.

Hometown Opry fans and others mourned Cornor at a benefit and celebration of life event held May 15 inside Campbell Hall on the Pasadena Fairgrounds.

The event raised more than $34,000 for Cornor’s widow, Wester said.

The emcee for the 50s show will be Dr. Steve Kuykendall of Pasadena.

Phillip, a Lake Jackson native, is set to perform “Unchained Melody,” which premiered in a 1955 film, and “Lucille,” which was a Little Richard hit.

Bourgeois recorded the much-loved “Breaking Up is Hard to Do” in 1959.

“He’s my favorite,” said Varley, who worked in administrative support for the Deer Park Fire Department for many years.

“I saw him perform a few months ago and he left me speechless,” she said.

Brooks said the ’50s show is still the most popular of all the center’s musical offerings.

She can’t wait to hear the band perform “Stars on the Water.”

After the pandemic, Hometown Opry was the most requested event that Pasadena-area residents wanted to bring back to the center.

“Our (Harris County) commissioner, Adrian Garcia, stepped in and made sure this show was up and running as quickly as possible,” Brooks said. “The Hometown Opry has now been running successfully since July 2021 and we hope to have many more.”

Don Maines is a freelance writer who can be contacted at [email protected]