Tag Archive for: breaking news

Country Music Hall of Fame Names Next Class

Clockwise: Jimmy Dean, Ferlin Husky, Billy Sherrill, and Don Williams

The Country Music Association announced today that Jimmy Dean, Ferlin Husky, Billy Sherrill, and Don Williams will become the newest members of the coveted Country Music Hall of Fame.

Due to a tie in the voting, both Dean and Husky will be inducted in the “Veterans Era Artist” category. Williams will be inducted in the “Modern Era Artist” category. Sherrill will be inducted in the “Non-Performer” category, which is awarded every third year in a rotation with the “Recording and/or Touring Musician” and “Songwriter” categories. Dean, Husky, Sherrill, and Williams will increase membership in the Country Music Hall of Fame from 108 to 112 inductees.

“These four gentlemen broadened Country Music immensely with their talents, exposing millions of fans around the world to our format,” said Steve Moore, Chairman of the CMA Board of Directors. “Their contributions to the genre and to popular culture are immeasurable, and we are proud to award them the highest honor in Country Music.”

Induction ceremonies for Dean, Husky, Sherrill and Williams will take place at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum later this year. Since 2007, the Museum’s Medallion Ceremony, an annual reunion of the Hall of Fame membership, has served as the official rite of induction for new members.

“The 2010 honorees are Southern men who have used their voices, songwriting, instruments and life experience to create enduring Country Music that dominated popularity charts throughout the middle and closing decades of the 20th Century,” said Museum Director Kyle Young. “Their songs, recordings, live performances, and presence on radio, television, and even in the movies, are part of the sonic architecture that now frames our music in the mainstream. We extend our heartiest congratulations to them all and look forward to the stories and fellowship to come.”

“I thought I was already in there,” said Dean humorously. “Seriously, it brought a huge grin to my face. I am honored.”

An emotional Husky said, “I’d like to thank my Lord Jesus Christ for dying for me, saving my soul, and bringing me into the world as a country boy. And also, for giving me the talent to sing, entertain, and help convert millions around the world to Country Music. I’m still a country boy and proud of it. In the words of my close friend, the late Stringbean, ‘I sure am glad I’m me!'”

“Anything I have ever accomplished would have been totally impossible without the help and support of the greatest songwriters and musicians in the world, and of course what I stole from Owen Bradley,” said Sherrill.

“I feel extremely honored and overwhelmed with this news,” said Williams. “It is unbelievable that CMA thought about me in this manner.”

CMA created the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1961 to recognize noteworthy individuals for their outstanding contributions to the format with Country Music’s highest honor.

For more information on the inductees and the election process click here.

MR Exclusive: ACM Expands Entertainer Category To Eight Nominees

acmWhen the Academy of Country Music Awards take place next year, there will be eight artists vying for the night’s coveted Entertainer of the Year trophy. After much deliberation, the ACM has decided to add three nominees to the previous final slate of five artists in the category, starting with the upcoming show on an as-yet-unannounced date. The Academy is also reworking the New Artist categories for the Awards, and exploring a one-time location change from its typical Las Vegas home.

“There’s been a movement the last few years to redefine the Entertainer category,” explains ACM Executive Director Bob Romeo. But when committee members sat down to examine the award’s criteria, it was a daunting task. With so many important facets of a music career at work—touring, airplay, sales, media appearances—the category was nearly impossible to define. “The controversial question was, ‘Should someone win Entertainer that hasn’t had as big of a tour as someone else?’” says Romeo. “And that got to be a very in-depth discussion about how much touring should weigh.”

Bob Romeo

Bob Romeo

“After a lot of discussions we realized that [the industry] can’t define the category because the fans gather their perspective differently,” he says. Instead of trying to narrow down the criteria for the category, the Academy took the opposite approach and expanded it. Romeo believes this change will be beneficial in numerous ways. “By allowing three more people to run it’s more inclusive for the format, and it gives us three more people to help promote the viewing of the show.”

The Academy made another major change to the Entertainer category two years ago by allowing fans to vote for the final winner. ACM professional members will still narrow down the Entertainer nominees to the final eight. The final nominees will be revealed in February 2010 in Nashville, date to-be-announced.

For the new artist categories, the ACM is combining Top New Female Vocalist and Top New Male Vocalist into a single Top New Solo Vocalist category for the 2010 show. In addition, the Top New Vocal Duo or Group category will become two separate categories.

“The Academy has always been responsive to the industry and our Board felt these changes reflect what is happening in country music,” states Romeo. “The proliferation of duos and groups over the past several years is impossible to deny.” Citing past new artist award winners Zac Brown Band, Jack Ingram and Jake Owen, Romeo says it is good to have more than one newcomer category because it gives the act something to hang their hat on. Plus, many of them spend the following year touting the win, in effect creating ACM Award interest.

In addition to Entertainer of the Year, all three new artist categories—Top New Solo Vocalist, Top New Vocal Duo and Top New Vocal Group—will be open to fan voting, and those winners will also once again compete for the overall Top New Artist award.

“One thing the Academy would like to say is that we’re open to change,” Romeo reiterates. “And I think that every year we realize we have to revisit our criteria to reflect what’s happening out there. We realized that last year after the voting process started, when it came to Album of the Year and we had to tweak criteria to include digital downloads.”

The ACM is a progressive organization that strives to promote the genre through fan engagement. To that end, Romeo confirms that “the Academy board is exploring options of moving and doing a special one-off Awards show” in 2010.

The ballot timeline for professional members:
1st Ballot Opens – Mon., Jan. 4, 2010, 9 AM/CT
1st Ballot Closes – Fri., Jan. 15, 5 PM/CT
2nd Ballot Opens – Mon., Feb. 1, 9 AM/CT
2nd Ballot Closes – Fri., Feb. 12, 5 PM/CT
3rd Ballot Opens – Mon., March 22, 9 AM/CT
3rd Ballot Closes – Fri., April 2, 5 PM/CT

Details and timeline for fan voting will be announced at a later date. For more information on ACM Awards criteria, please click here.

Updated: Ed Salamon Exits CRB

Ed Salamon

Ed Salamon

Ed Salamon is departing his role as Executive Director of Country Radio Broadcasters Inc., MusicRow has confirmed.

Although there has been no official report, it appears that Salamon has exited the organization effective immediately. Official CRB spokesperson, Aristomedia’s Jeff Walker noted, “CRB does not comment on employment matters,” but MusicRow has verified reports which began to surface yesterday evening (10/28) regarding Salamon’s departure.

The leadership change arrives with planning for the organization’s annual event Feb. 24-26, 2010, in full swing. Word of the Board’s decision began to spread after the adjournment of Nashville CRB Board meetings which concluded yesterday.

Salamon was responsible for production and fundraising for all CRB initiatives and also serves as an adjunct professor at Belmont University. His past posts include President of Programming for Westwood One Radio. Salamon was inducted into the Country Radio Hall of Fame in 2006.

Brenner 19

CRB President Becky Brenner

According to CRB President Becky Brenner of KMPS, “For the past 12 months, Country Radio Broadcasters has conducted an extensive review of its operations in terms of the organization’s administrative functions and the execution of its flagship event, Country Radio Seminar. As a result of this review process, the CRB Board of Directors has initiated several internal changes, which are designed to keep the organization growing in this very challenging economic climate. A number of adjustments have already been made. As we continue our ongoing effort to ensure the vitality of our organization and achieve our mission of growth through sharing, we do anticipate additional changes.”

CRS-41: The early bird registration rate of $499 for CRS 41 expires on Friday, Oct. 30. Registration is available online at www.CRB.org or by contacting the Country Radio Broadcasters at 615-327-4487.

Country Radio Seminar is packed with top-notch talent and expert speakers once again this year. Superstar Taylor Swift performs at the popular Music City Jam™ (sponsored by the Academy of Country Music), and financial authority Dave Ramsey kicks off the event with CRS 41’s Keynote Address. 

Additionally, a new, streamlined agenda delivers more universally appealing panels and research presentations for all attendees, regardless of market size. Best-selling business author and journalist Bob Rosner provides attendees the necessary skills to survive in a tough economy with his “Workplace 911” panel. Also new this year is a Friday morning focus group, titled “Normal People: From the Mouths of the Consumer.”