Well folks we all know about the new inductees of 2015 from The Country Music Hall Of Fame which were Jim Ed Brown and his sisters Maxine and Bonnie, The Oak Ridge Boys and Grady Martin. Now, while every one of us have our long list of artists we want inducted in our lifetime I for one firmly believe that Grady Martin was long overdue for his induction. If you want my secret opinion mine is Jack Greene I want to see him inducted within my lifetime. Nonetheless these were the choices for 2015 and that’s not all the great goings on down there this year so far!
There are two really awesome exhibits being featured right now Tanya Tucker “Strong Enough To Bend” will be running through May of 2015 and features her whole life and career within country music. In 1974 at only sixteen she signed an unprecedented 1.4 million dollar contract with MCA records and released some of her biggest hits on those first seven years of records. Her 1978 album “T.N.T” is heralded as her finest country and rock crossover album and the exhibit also features her tabloid popular marriage to Glen Campbell.
Until August another great exhibit that is open is Ronnie Milsap “A Legend In My Time”. And honestly that is what he is..a Legend. He is credited for his crossover pop country of his time and some really great Honky Tonk Country as well. You know what folks, a lot of people say they hate pop country nowadays and that’s fine. But then they go ahead and start name dropping people like Marty Robbins and Ronnie Milsap who recorded a lot of pop country of their own era. NOW TRUE the pop country of 1970 isn’t as hokey and crappy and plastic like Jason Aldean is and you cannot compare the two. But to say “White Sportcoat And A Pink Carnation” was Traditional Country? Nope sorry, was it still a timeless classic..yes, yes it was.
This exhibit features the long struggle that Milsap had in Country Music because of his physical appearance and his close friendship with Charley Pride which was taboo at that time frame. This exhibit will feature artifacts including: Stage costume Milsap performed in during the 1970s designed by Harvey Krantz with leather fringe, embroidery, rhinestones, and mirrored discs. Satin stage costume worn by Milsap at the 1978 CMA Awards designed by Harvey Kranzt with lace overly and hundreds of rhinestones.Jacket worn by Milsap on the cover of his 1985 album Lost in the Fifties Tonight. Various awards presented to Milsap including three from the 1977 Country Music Association awards show:
Entertainer of the Year
Male Vocalist of the Year
Album of the Year for Ronnie Milsap Live
Sunglasses made for Milsap in the 1970s featuring his initials in rhinestones.Section of the customized Neve recording console with Braille labels used by Milsap at Groundstar Laboratories, the Nashville studio he owned from 1978 to 1995.
On April 1st the Hall Of Fame will be featuring some family members and guests of the families of the Legends of Country Music with an intimate celebration of their lives. And this is a GREAT opportunity to see the new Johnny Cash and Bob Dylan exhibit running all year. This is a show NOT to miss folks as they will showcase the contributions all of these fine people gave Country Music. Felice Bryant is a name that needs to be featured more in the Hall Of Fame because in 1967 she wrote “Rocky Top” which became the Tennessee state song. It was first recorded by Bobby and Sunny Osborne that same year and they were the first bluegrass band to perform with electric instruments however in 1974 they stopped because the Opry moved from the Ryman. She also wrote “We Could” for Kitty Wells and wrote for Bob Luman and most of the Everly Brothers top hits.
To my understanding this event will be included in the ticket price of admission to the Hall Of Fame and trust me this will chocked full of awesome information about some of Country Music’s finest Legends. Shooter Jennings and Jessi Colter will be on hand to share stories and remember their loved one.. Waylon Jennings, who along with Jessi and Willie Nelson and Tompall Glaser released the first ever Country Music record to go platinum “Wanted:The Outlaws” which was produced to usher in a new era of Country Music.
Jamey Johnson will also be on hand who released a whole entire album of Hank Cochran songs recently including “Make The World Go Away” made popular by Eddy Arnold who was one of the richest stars in Country Music history. He also wrote “I Fall To Pieces” by Patsy Cline. Hank was one of the most successful songwriters of all time and he is heralded as a Songwriting Legend.