Con Hunley returning to stage for first post-pandemic concert
By Focus Staff
“Well, we never thought it would be this long, but we are thankful and excited to be getting back to making music!”
Con Hunley, one of East Tennessee’s brightest stars, is eager to perform his first full show with his band since the pandemic hit three years ago.
“We had just finished doing a great show at Walters State toward the end of February in 2020 and had several shows in the works for that year, including a Con Hunley and Friends Cruise. But two weeks after that last show the world stopped.
“We thought it would just be a couple of weeks or a month at the most, but as we all know that’s not how it happened.”
Hunley’s career has endured, spanning decades with 25 songs on the Billboard Country Hot 100 and 11 of those in the Top Twenty. Hunley has performed on county music’s biggest stages, toured and shared the stage with some of country music’s biggest names, and he is still going strong!
Hunley told The Focus that it was quite an adjustment when things shut down. He filled his time playing a lot of golf, which he didn’t mind at all. When venues started opening back up in 2021 and into 2022, Con Hunley started slowly getting back out there, taking part in several special events in and around Nashville with his country music industry friends, including Country’s Family Reunion.
Last year when Larry Gatlin and the Gatlin Brothers came to the Bijou, Hunley was in attendance and Larry got him out of the audience to perform a song he actually wrote especially for Con in the heyday of his career. Hunley knew it was finally time to get back out there, and he couldn’t be happier to be doing the show at the Union County Opry in Maynardville on Saturday.
Union County holds a special place in his heart and the hearts of his whole family. His father and mother, Kenneth and Clodell (Brewer) Hunley, spent their early years growing up in Union County. Even after they married and moved to Knoxville they both had so many relatives still living in Union County that when they began having a family of their own, the kids knew exactly where they came from. Brewer Holler in Sharps Chapel is named after Hunley’s mother’s family. And Keck Cemetery is named for family on his maternal side as well. Hunley’s father’s family were from the Pinhook area of Hickory Valley and were part of the forced move when Norris Dam was built. So Hunley’s Union County roots run deep.
“I’m honored to be bringing my band up to Union County for this show. I hope all my friends, family, and fans come out – it’s going to be a great night. I have some absolutely killer players in my band and my brother Kenny and sister Ruthie will be there singing harmonies. We’re all looking forward to the show. We’ll have a lot of fun, and I’ll be hanging out after the show to say howdy to everyone.”
The show at the Union County Opry is on Saturday, April 1 at 7:00 p.m. Tickets are $20.00 at the door or you can get them in advance online at unioncountyopry.com and at the Kitchen Design Center in Maynardville.