Saturday Roxy concert series still growing

By Staff
Jonathan Willis
Jim Seals has traveled the world playing country music with the group Shenandoah.
But Seals, a Hamilton native and a Shoals resident, said some of the best times are spent on the stage at places like Russellville's historic Roxy Theater.
Seals and a group of local musicians, including the Kerry Gilbert Band, have been putting shows on each second Saturday of each month since April.
"It's a wonderful thing," he said.
"It is a great atmosphere there. It lets people step back in time."
Seals said playing in such venues as Tokyo, Japan, and the Cotton Bowl in Dallas, Texas, is thrills he will never forget, but there is something special about more intimate settings like the Roxy.
"I like looking out across the audience and seeing familiar faces," he said.
That has been the case at the Roxy as larger crowds have attended each concert.
They have grown so quickly that concert organizers, who originally planned to do a three-month trial series, have decided to do it for the next 24 months.
"It is great for the community and it's a lot of fun," said Russellville resident Andy Martin.
Saturday's "A Night at the Roxy" will begin at 7:30 p.m. and will feature Jimmy Yeary, lead singer of Shenandoah, and RCA recording artist Billy Ryan.
"This has all taken me back 25 years before Shenandoah took," said Seals, who wanted to stop touring so much so he could focus on teaching music.
"I decided in 1999 that if I didn't slow down and teach, then I never would. That is something I really enjoy."
Seals said the Roxy performances allow him to enjoy the kind of shows he grew up doing and he believes it brings something new to the community.
"People get a chance to step back in time with the marquee lit up outside and the feel inside the theater.
"It's just a lot of fun."

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