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ACTOR WILLIAM SHATNER DEBUTS COUNTRY SONGS AT GRAND OLE OPRY

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In a move designed to boldly take him where no Starfleet captain has gone before, actor William Shatner took the stage for the first time at the Grand Ole Opry to debut songs from his new country album.

The 87-year-old Shatner made his Nashville debut on the Opry stage Friday night, alongside Jeff Cook of the band Alabama, with whom he recorded the album, Why Not Me. The album features the song, “Beam Me Up,” which is a simultaneous nod to whiskey maker Jim Beam and Shatner’s popular catchphrase from the old Star Trek program.

Shatner said while he’s not a “typical singer,” he feels he understands what he called the “musicality of language.” To the somewhat cringing delight – if you can call it that – of fans everywhere, Shatner has recorded several albums, including Christmas music and rock, as well as the self-deprecating, tongue-in-cheek 2004 release, “Has Been.”

Word is, Shatner has plans to record a blues album next.

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