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chet atkins

chet atkins

Twelve Artists + Who Should Be In the Country Music Hall of Fame

2y ago


In 1961 the Country Music Association (CMA) announced the creation of the Country Music Hall of Fame (HOF) and chose its first three inductees Jimmie Rodgers, Hank Williams, and Fred Rose. In 1963, there was no induction. At the time, CMA rules required a unanimous selection, but voting was divided that year. CMA rescinded the rule, which opened the door to subjectivity. Inductions were generally justifiable until the mid-70s, when subjectivity began to overtake reasoning. Selections should be based upon those who achieved a level of success matched or exceeded by few, or their influence had a wide reaching effect on others, sometimes beyond their own profession. Many members have been inducted posthumously or near the end of their careers. Lefty Frizzell is a notable example. He died in 1975 and was inducted in 1982. A few blazed in early, making it possible to be recognized before passing on. Kitty Wells who is still alive (b. 8/30/1919) at this writing was inducted in 1976. At age 49, Chet Atkins (6/20/1924 ~ 6/30/ 2001) was the youngest living member to be inducted. Some artists have been overlooked or have yet to have their name called for official recognition. The following are twelve singers who impacted the country music world and should be inducted. • Billy Walker (Billy (1/14/1929 ~ 5/21/2006): Billy is best-known for "Charlie's Shoes" (No. 1, 1962). Walker had more than 30 charted songs during a nearly 60-year career and was a staple on the Grand Ole Opry. • Cal Smith (b. 4/ 07/1932): Cal got his initial breakthrough as a rhythm guitarist with Ernest Tubb's Texas Troubadours. Ernest Tubb heard him perform and invited Cal into his band. Smith is best known for his 1974 hit "Country Bumpkin." • Charlie Walker (112/1926 ~ 9/12/2008): Charlie's career was highlighted with his best known single, "Pick Me Up on Your Way Down" (No. 2, 1958). Walker was a member of the Grand Ole Opry from 1967 until his death. • Connie Smith (b. 8/14/1941): Connie began her career in 1963 after winning a local talent contest. Smith subsequently signed with RCA Records (1964) and charted her biggest No. 1 single that year, "Once a Day." • Dottie West (10/11/1932 ~ 9/4/1991): Dottie was one of the most gifted and talented pioneers of modern country music. West was one of a few female country singers, performing in a genre which was then dominated by male artists. She is best remembered for "Country Sunshine." • Jean Shepard (b. 11/21/1933): Jean was a pioneer for women of country music. She laid the groundwork for Patsy Cline, Loretta Lynn, Tammy Wynette and Dottie West. Her single, "A Dear John Letter" (No. 1, 1953), was one of the initial records by a female country artist to sell more than a million copies. Jean Shepard was inducted into the Country Music Hall of fame in 2011. • Johnny Horton (4/ 30/1925 ~ 11/ 5/1960): Of all the singers who broadened the country music landscape in the 1950s, Horton is probably the least known. Johnny, who made his name as a honky-tonk singer, rose to fame with "The Battle of New Orleans" (No. 1, 1959). • Mel Street (10/21/1933 ~ 10/21/1978): Mel came into prominence in 1972 with Borrowed Angel," which was Mel's debut single. By the time it had worked its way up to the No. 7 spot, it was a brilliant start to Mel's tragically short career. • Red Sovine (7/17/1918 ~ 4/4/1980): Red was the last giant of country music's truck driving singers. He trekked through the country music world for decades as a modest singer, but it was the song that hit shortly before his death, "Teddy Bear" (No. 1, 1976), which he will always be remembered. • Stonewall Jackson (b. 11/6/1932): Stonewall was one of the most popular stars of the early 1960s, scoring a string of top-ten hits and becoming a fixture at the Grand Ole Opry. Jackson is best known for his popular single Waterloo (No. 1, 1958). • Vern Gosdin (8/ 5/1934 ~ 4/28/2009): As country music briefly moved back toward traditional styles in the 1980s, ...