Gene Watson and his band and crew are fine after their bus nearly flipped over in route to a show in Sandstone, Minnesota. The bus’s GPS system had set them on a narrow gravel road to the venue and when the bus driver pulled over to let an oncoming truck pass, the road crumbled beneath them. The bus narrowly avoided falling into a boggy area and instead landed on its side and stayed that way. They were just eight miles from the venue when the accident happened.
Four tow trucks were called to the scene. The first three trucks were too small to pull the bus out, so a 50 Ton rotator truck was called in to haul the bus back into the road. Gene and his band, who climbed out of the bus through a window, were driven to the venue with no instruments and wearing their traveling clothes.
The show must go on, however, so Gene and his band played the first of two shows in their traveling outfits and borrowed an opening band’s instruments. Gene’s pedal steel player borrowed a pedal steel from 80 miles away that arrived just in time for the first show.
“I was glad that none of my band or crew were hurt in the accident and that the bus only suffered superficial paint and body damage,” Gene said. “Fortunately, I know a little place that can handle that work and I am hoping I can get a discount.” Gene owns his own body shop.
Gene is back in Nashville where he will perform with Randy Travis on the Grand Ole Opry tonight, October 4. They will sing their song from Randy’s 25th Anniversary Celebration album, “Didn’t We Shine.”