British country stars The Shires have ticked off another dream on their wish-list by appearing at the home of country #Music, the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville. The singing duo, comprised of Ben Earle and Crissie Rhodes, appeared alongside country stars Ricky Skaggs, Jeannie Seely and Connie Smith for their June 6 performance.


Introduced by Country Music Hall of Fame member Whisperin' Bill Anderson, who has nearly 80 hit singles to his credit, the duo performed two songs including their signature number Nashville Grey Skies - which proved prophetic as a heavy storm drenched the country music capital during their stay in the city.


The Grand Ole Opry is the world's longest running radio show in the world. Since its inception in 1925, it has played host to every major country star from Hank Williams and Johnny Cash to Dolly Parton, Patsy Cline and Taylor Swift.


The Opry was originally broadcast from the Ryman Auditorium and when broadcasting was switched to larger premises part of the original Ryman stage, known as 'the circle,' was moved to the newly built Grand Ole Opry House in the Opry Land theme park so new stars could tread the same boards as the legendary singers that came before them.


As the Shires said on Facebook, "We've had so many amazing moments and experiences but nothing can prepare you for being up on that ‪‎Opry‬ stage. You can almost literally feel the history rising up through you as you step into 'The Circle'. An Opry debut is a real once in a lifetime moment and of course our nerves were running high."


Although the Shires recorded their debut album Brave in Nashville, their appearance on the Opry was the first time they had played live in America. They completed their visit to Music City with further appearances at the Cannery Ballroom and on the Country Music Association's GlobaLive stage in down town Nashville where they were joined by another British country duo, Ward Thomas.


Earle and Rhodes met after Earle posted an appeal on Facebook for a singer who shared his love of contemporary country artists such as Lady Antebellum. The duo chose their name to commemorate their British origins in Hertfordshire and Bedfordshire.


Earlier this year, the Shires became the first ever British country act to place an album in the UK Top 10.
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