Singer and songwriter Bill Anderson marked a career milestone last Saturday night (July 16) when he celebrated his 50th anniversary as a member of the Grand Ole Opry.

The July 16 Opry show at the Grand Ole Opry House in Nashville featured performances from friends Connie Smith and Ronnie Milsap.  Anderson also performed, singing classic hits "Po' Folks" and "Still."

A video tribute to Bill from his friend and frequent co-writer Brad Paisley also aired during the show.  Anderson told the audience, "This takes me back 50 years when Billy Grammar introduced me as the newest member of the Grand Ole Opry. I'm more nervous tonight than I was 50 years ago."

One highlight of the evening came when an suprise guest Alison Krauss performed "Whiskey Lullaby" with Jon Randall, the award-winning song written by Anderson and Randall that became a duet hit for Alison and Brad Paisley.

Bill Anderson has been a member of the Opry on July 15, 1961.  He has regularly performed and hosted segments since that time.