The Lloyd Wood Show is one of the most consistently successful acts in the state of Indiana. Lloyd Wood and his band, performing in Indiana since 1978, are nationally recognized for their contributions to the country music industry. Lloyd is also a recipient of the Sagamore of the Wabash, the highest honor bestowed by an Indiana Governor. The Lloyd Wood Show provides family entertainment to the growing millions of tourists who visit Brown County every year.
-- Country Time Music Theater, 24 October 1999.
This page is dedicated to Lloyd Ellsworth Wood, by one of the other Lloyd Woods who has yet to hear the Lloyd Wood Show play.
The Lloyd Wood Show's
|Lloyd Ellsworth Wood|
Entertainment, Herald-Times Online, Friday, July 18 2003.Lloyd Wood's fair tradition
Some traditions at the Monroe County Fair are so strong it wouldn't seem like the fair without them.
The swirling smells of wet hay, livestock and sweet things to eat.
The open palms of politicians extending greetings, best wishes and requests to "Remember me in the fall."
And best of all, the Lloyd Wood Show, with its bounty of top-rate musicianship, good humor and entertainment for all ages.
The Owen County native and his talented band is back again, older and maybe a little wiser, Wood said this week.
Family illnesses and obligations served to prompt the versatile Wood to end the kind of band-in-resident gigs at Brown County locations that have characterized most of his career. "It's kind of hard to not do that when you're selling tickets ahead of schedule and your audience comes to you," he said.
"But every Friday and Saturday night, every week, that's hard to keep up as well," Wood said.
A singer, songwriter, guitarist and vocal impressionist, Lloyd first gained a solid regional following as Lloyd Wood and the Little Nashville Express, the house band for the Little Nashville Opry. They opened the show for most of the biggest acts in country music in the late 1970s and early '80s and gained a following among regional country fans.
Wood moved on to similar, standing engagements at the defunct Brandywine Music Hall in Greenfield, to the Ski World lounge and to Country Time Jamboree in Brown County.
"We thought we'd try it for six months and it wound up being 15 years," the affable entertainer chuckled about the Country Time Jamboree. "We stayed in one place a long time but I don't think we've ever stayed in one place musically. We always try to keep growing, keep trying new things."
Recently Wood has taken to the tri-state travel circuit, playing fairs and country music halls. It can still be arduous, but not as confining as commitments every Friday and Saturday night, virtually year-round.
"I think myself and all the band -- we're enjoying ourselves more than ever now. We finally have our priorities right," Wood said. "One thing I've learned is you've got to satisfy yourself and, hopefully, we're satisfying ourselves and everyone else."
The band doesn't spend as much time taking requests or trying to learn every current country hit, as it once did. Instead, it's focusing a little more on Wood's original material with classics, Wood's famous impersonations and, OK, maybe a nod toward changing times.
"We do have one country rap song," Wood said. "(Steel guitarist) Jimmie (Misenheimer) calls it Saran rap."
Wood couldn't perform without showing off his impressive skill at mimicking the likes of George Jones, Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, Elvis and Marty Robbins, as well as Walter Brennan, Jimmy Stewart, Gabby Hayes and Tiny Tim.
"I still enjoy that. It's fun and it's fun for everyone to have some laughs," he said.
"But as for the music, we're more into playing what we like to play a little more these days," Wood said. "We don't just do country. The band is so versatile. They're capable of playing jazz and blues and they love western swing. And, of course, a little old-fashioned rock 'n' roll is always fun."
Wood's outstanding band includes Misenheimer; Rick Ferguson on bass; Danny Jackson on drums; Gordon Lowry (formerly with Ray Price) on fiddle; Libby Lowry on piano and, sometimes, Brett Raper (a one-time Tom T. Hall sideman), who gives the group a twin-fiddle attack especially effective on Western swing.
The Lloyd Wood Show performs Thursday night at 8 p.m. at the fairgrounds grandstand.
Other highlights of the fair, which gets underway officially on Saturday, includes the Monroe County Fair Queen contest at 7:30 p.m. Sunday; the Figure 8 Demolition Derby at 7:30 p.m. Monday; singers Claudia Nygaard at 8 p.m. Wednesday and former Miss Indiana Sheila Stephen, next Friday at 8 p.m.
And if you're looking for a real blast, Jim Bristoe will haul out his 2-ton pumpkin cannon with its 30-foot barrel Sunday at the north parking lot at 5 p.m. He'll blast a pumpkin through an automobile -- and maybe take aim at a few satellites -- in his demonstration of the powerful cannon.
Staff writer Mike Leonard can be reached at 331-4368 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
AUGUSTA - George Jones, Johnny Cash and Willie Nelson won't be playing in Augusta Dec. 2, but it may sound like it.
Country music performer and impressionist, Lloyd Wood will be performing with his nine piece band at the Augusta High School Gymnasium.
Wood is being brought to Augusta by Buffalo Trace Bluegrass Promotions and any profits over cost will be donated to the Augusta Volunteer Fire Department.
The Lloyd Wood Show has been a staple of the Country Time Jamboree in the "other Nashville" - Nashville, Ind. - for 12 years.
The show features traditional and contemporary country music, bluegrass, 1950s oldies, gospel, country rock and an assortment of impressions of entertainers such as George Jones, Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, Walter Brenon, John Wayne, Jimmy Stewart, Elmer Fudd, Goofy and others.
An Indiana native, Wood began singing at age four and playing the guitar and mandolin at six. He began his country music career in the army while stationed in Germany. In 1977, he joined the Little Nashville Opry where he was lead singer and emcee for three and a half years. He then spent a year and a half at the Brandywine Hall in Greenfield, Ind., before returning to Nashville, Ind., where he started the Lloyd Wood Show.
Wood owes much of his success to having kept many of the same band mates for "years and years," he said.
|Flyer advertising the Lloyd Wood Show|
Around Indiana, Herald Journal, Monticello, Indiana, Tuesday, March 8, 1994Performer finds success in the 'other' Nashville
NASHVILLE, Ind. (AP) - For most of Lloyd Wood's musical career, he's heard the left-handed compliment: "You're so good. What are you doing here?"
"Here" has always been the wrong Nashville. The one in Indiana.
"What stays on my mind is back when I was at the (Little Nashville) Opry and fronting all the stars, their band members would come in and say, 'Man, you've got it made,' " he said.
"Most of them hate the road and just wish like everything they could settle down, have a normal life and still be able to play music."
At that, Wood has been spectacularly succcssful.
The Owen County native fronted the Little Nashville Express at the Brown County music mecca from 1978-81, when he left for a promising but ill-fated run at the defunct Brandywine music hall, east of Indianapolis in Greenfield.
When the Brandywine folded, Wood and his band pursued road shows for a while, but it wasn't long before the comfort of a home base started sounding mighty nice. "So we found an ol' barn outside of Nashville and figured we'd try it a few weeks, to see how it would go," Wood says.
"It turned into 12 years." This month, the Lloyd Wood Show moves from the small barn east of Nashville to larger, plusher quarters at the new Country Time Music Hall at Ski World.
"It's more than double the capacity of the old place, it has theater seats, airconditioning and there are no poles in the way to block people's vision (a constant problem at the old Country Time Music Hall). I'm really excited," he said.
For the last few years it had been painfully obvious to Wood that he needed to move to a larger venue. "We have a good, loyal followlng of people throughout the tri-state area and even up into Canada," Wood said. "People often tell us they plan their vacations so they can come down and see us."
Fans closer to home - central Indiana, for example - said the frequent sellouts often deterred them from hopping in the car for a spontaneous trip to Nashville.
|Lloyd Ellsworth Wood|
"I've been very fortunate to have kept some of the same band members for years and years. Some of these guys have been with me for 15, 18 years," he said.
The nine members of Wood's band include longtime hot pickers such as steel guitarist and dobro player Jimmie Misenheimer, bass and banjo player Rick Ferguson, and more recent additions such as keyboard wizard Sherif Shaalan, "the only living Egyptian who can play country music as good as he does," Wood joked.
In terms of songs, Wood has always gone with a mix of about 20 percent original to 80 percent "cover" songs. He admits he'd like to do more originals, but at the same time, he knows what entertains audiences most.
And then, there's Wood himself: genuinely friendly, easy to like and a clearly talented singer. So talented, in fact, that his forte has long been his impeccably accurate impersonations of other singers.
Not long after Billy Ray Cyrus had his big hit with "Achy Breaky Heart," Wood offered up a parody version, popular on regional country radio, in which he impersonated 14 voices, ranging from Cyrus to George Jones, Gabby Hayes, Johnny Cash and Jimmy Stewart with a little Huckleberry Hound, Yogi Bear and Elmer Fudd thrown in.
"My own songs I try to do in my own voice, if I can find where it is," he admitted. After doing so many other voices it is hard sometimes."
Impersonation was a talent Wood discovered early in life. He's even used it - years ago, he swears - as a prank on fellow workers at Otis Elevator in Bloomington.
"I'd call in and use somebody else's voice and ask for a sick day," he said, grinning.
Outside of the humor, abundant in his show, Wood considers himself a serious song writer and singer, and still keeps at least half an eye on that other Nashville - the one in Tennessee.
"There's still a part of me who'd like to do that," he admitted. "There are times you sit back and look at all the people who have made it there and you say to yourself, 'I can do that. I'm at least that good. I know I am.' It's not bragging. It's confidence in your abilities.
"There are places I'd love to play, too. I've played Nashville a few times and done some road shows," Wood sald. "Once we get going in the new place I'm hoping to work with some of my contacts down there and try to get some publicity for what we're doing. I'd love to get on (TNN's) Crook & Chase. That would really help promote this place.
"I'm satisfied though, if none of that ever happens," the 46-year-old singer said. "As the years slip by, I find my attitude about certain things changes. You learn that some things aren't what you thought they were anyway."
That advice from veteran Nashville band members "You've got it made" - may well be as true today as it was 15 years ago.
Other Lloyd Wood Show information:
(I, Lloyd Wood, know nothing about the Lloyd Wood show other than the information presented on this page. The fact that this webpage is not hosted in the United States is an indication that I am one of the other Lloyd Woods. I still haven't heard any of Lloyd Wood's music, either...)