FOP show performers announced
April 18, 2013 10:50 AM
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A country music singer and songwriter whose singles remain in frequent rotation on country radio is returning to Indiana County this summer.

The Fraternal Order of Police announced that Joe Diffie will perform two shows, at 1 and 6 p.m., at the 39th annual Country Music Show July 28 at Mack Park.

Joining him — also for the second time in Indiana — will be Little Texas, who have performed such Top 10 songs as “God Blessed Texas” and “What Might Have Been,” and who reunited in 2007 after a little more than a 10-year hiatus.

The regional group NOMAD (North of Mason-Dixon), of Ellwood City, will open the show for second time.

“We had Joe here in 1998, and it was a sold out, packed show, it was fantastic,” said Michael Strineka, co-chair of the show committee.

“Little Texas was here about six years ago, and we heard nothing but compliments, and they were very good.”

Diffie’s singles have often risen to the top of country music charts, including such songs as “Prop Me up Beside the Jukebox (if I Die),” “Pickup Man” and “John Deere Green.”

A native of Oklahoma, Diffie played in a bluegrass band in college, then worked on singing and songwriting while working at a foundry. When his songs began to be picked up by major artists, he moved to Nashville.

His first album, “A Thousand Winding Roads,” was released in 1990, and his first single, “Home,” rose to the top of the country charts.

He continued to regularly feature songs on the Top 10 list through the 1990s and into the 2000s.

His most recent album turned back to the bluegrass he grew up with. “Homecoming: the Bluegrass Album” was released in 2010.

Little Texas won an Academy of Country Music Award Vocal Group of the Year award in 1994, then released their “Kick a Little” album. They earned two Grammy nominations and released ‘Little Texas — Greatest Hits.’

Then they disbanded.

But in 2007 the four original members re-formed the band with an album called “Missing Years,” quickly followed by a live album, “The Very Best of Little Texas: Live & Loud.”

And with a relative newcomer in NOMAD opening the show, Strineka said it will cater to everyone.

“I think this is just going to be a real crowd pleaser,” he said. “We always have a fantastic turnout, and it’s for all our police departments in Indiana County.”

Tickets are on sale now, at $22.50 in advance or $25 at the door, and proceeds benefit the FOP.

For information, call (724) 349-9114.

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