Josh Turner to be inducted to Music City Walk of Fame
Music City, Inc. today announced the sixth class of inductees to the Music City Walk of Fame, presented by founding sponsor Gibson Guitar: Dr. R.H. Boyd, Cowboy Jack Clement, Mike Curb, Marty Stuart, Josh Turner and CeCe Winans. The honorees will be recognized officially with the unveiling of commemorative sidewalk markers on Sunday, April 19, beginning at 2:30 p.m. in the Hall of Fame Park in downtown Nashville. The induction ceremony, which is sponsored by Great American Country (GAC), is free and open to the public.
The Music City Walk of Fame is an official project of Music City, Inc., the charitable foundation of the Nashville Convention & Visitors Bureau (NCVB), and is produced with the support of presenting sponsor Gibson Guitar and sponsors GAC, the City of Nashville and Metro Parks.
“It’s a privilege to honor the great accomplishments of this impressive class of inductees,” said Butch Spyridon, president of the Nashville Convention & Visitors Bureau. “Each honoree represents the immense talent, creativity and diverse musical styles that have made Nashville, Music City.”
Created in the fall of 2006, the Music City Walk of Fame, on Nashville’s Music Mile, is a landmark tribute to those from all genres of music who have made significant contributions to preserving the musical heritage of Nashville and have contributed to the world through song or other industry collaboration. With the induction of this new class of honorees, there will be 37 total stars along the Walk of Fame.
Permanent sidewalk medallions made of stainless steel and terrazzo, with each honoree’s name displayed in a star-and-guitar design, will be installed in the sidewalk along the Music Mile. The plaques for this class of inductees will be inlaid in Hall of Fame Park on Demonbreun, between 4th and 5th Avenues South.
Nominations were open to the public and accepted in the categories of Artist, Musician, Songwriter, and Producer/Music Industry Executive. Application forms were reviewed by the Music City Walk of Fame anonymous selection committee.
“The Music City Walk of Fame continues to celebrate Nashville as one of the most exciting cities in America with exceptional musical talent on every corner,” said Henry Juszkiewicz, Chairman and CEO of Gibson Guitar. “It continues to be an honor to be involved with the Walk of Fame program and the many artists it represents.”
The April inductees for the Music City Walk of Fame:
Dr. R.H. Boyd
Dr. Richard Henry Boyd (1843-1922), a former slave, founded the National Baptist Publishing Board (NBPB; 1896-Present) in Nashville, Tennessee. One of the chief accomplishments of this Renaissance man was his effort to preserve the music of former slaves and their descendants. Boyd sought to develop church materials that allowed Negroes to tailor the church services to their understanding and culture. In addition, he was a leader in the collection, production, and preservation of African-American church music.
Boyd began publishing hymns, tunes, and song books as early as the NBPB’s first full production year, 1897. The NBPB developed the National Baptist Hymnal (1903) and sold thousands of copies to the churches by 1905. The NBPB also published Golden Gems: A Song Book for the Church Choir, the Pew, and Sunday School (1901). Boyd and the NBPB developed Christian music, including Hail the Baptist Congress (1912), for the annual National Baptist Sunday School Congress and trained the Boy and Girl Cadet units to march into the Congress hall singing that song and chanting Bible verses. Boyd also created the National Church Supply Company, which sold, among other items, church organs to the churches. The NBPB’s newspaper, The National Baptist Union Review, advertised such church items and printed sermons and songs.
By 1921, under the leadership of Richard Henry Boyd, the NBPB had more than twenty-five songbooks—including The National Baptist Hymnal, old meter songs, old plantation jubilee and folk songs from slavery days, and contemporary music. The NBPB became the first company to set the old slave melodies to music, and Boyd asked the church pastors to advertise the books among the members and the choir directors. The year before Boyd’s death, the NBPB produced 7,526,522 pieces of literature including music. Boyd was also responsible for starting the National Baptist Choir and the National Baptist Marching Brass Band, which graced the annual (“Marching for Jesus”) parades that preceded the annual National Baptist Sunday School Congress that was held in a different city of the United States every June. Boyd’s influence in Christian music continues through his great-grandson, Dr. T. B. Boyd III, who published The New National Baptist Hymnal (1977) and The New National Baptist Hymnal 21st Century Edition (2001), both of which continue to be among the best-selling hymnals in the nation.
In 2000, the NBPB was renamed the R.H. Boyd Publishing Corporation in honor of its founder Richard Henry Boyd. After four generations, Dr. R.H. Boyd’s legacy continues to influence Christian music across the world.
Sources: A Black Man’s Dream: The First Hundred Years, The Story of R. H. Boyd (1996); How It Came to Be: The Boyd Family’ Contribution to African American Religious Publishing from the 19th to the 21st Century (2007).
Cowboy Jack Clement
During a career of treading thin lines between folk singers, polka bands, outlaw songwriters, and the commercial music industry, Cowboy Jack Clement was the visionary maverick that combined song publishing, music and film production, a record company and recording studios decades before it became an industry trend. He has scored major musical success as a songwriter, producer, recording studio pioneer, publisher, artist and executive.
Born April 5, 1931, in Whitehaven, Tenn., Clement enlisted in the Marines as a teenager. After four years of service to his country, he toured in a bluegrass band, then returned to Memphis in 1954. He found work at Sun Records and worked at the mixing board for recording sessions with Roy Orbison, Carl Perkins, Johnny Cash, Charlie Rich and Jerry Lee Lewis. Another Sun artist, Elvis Presley, even opened for Clement at the Memphis club The Eagle's Nest. In those years, he wrote two of Cash's most enduring songs, "Ballad of a Teenage Queen" and "Guess Things Happen That Way."
After leaving Sun Records, Clement moved to Nashville to work for Chet Atkins, then while in Texas, he met George Jones and convinced him to cut the song, "She Thinks I Still Care." In 1965, Clement returned to Nashville and financed a demo by then-unknown Charley Pride and persuaded Atkins to sign him to RCA. Clement also wrote Pride's first two hits, "Just Between You and Me" and "I Know One," and produced Pride's first 13 albums for the label.
Clement launched the solo career of Don Williams through his JMI record label, a project that also introduced Allen Reynolds as a record producer. Reynolds later produced Garth Brooks, Crystal Gayle, Emmylou Harris, Bobby Bare and Kathy Mattea. In addition, Clement was Townes Van Zandt's first publisher, and Bob McDill also wrote for Clement's publishing company. Clement released his own album, All I Want to Do in Life in 1978.
Beyond country music, Clement produced three tracks for U2's Rattle and Hum sessions in Memphis and also produced an album for Louis Armstrong. In other ventures, he built four of Nashville's leading studios, produced a cult classic horror film and made perhaps the world's first music video on Don Williams in 1972, nine years before MTV launched. Clement now operates out of his spacious Nashville home -- with a fully equipped studio upstairs, a pool in the side yard, hammock out back and all the rooms wired for filming.
Mike Curb, California's former lieutenant governor and acting governor, is one of the most prominent figures in the entertainment world and presides over his own independent record label, one of the largest in the nation, that has launched the careers of numerous stars. During a distinguished career spanning more than 45 years, Curb has earned multi-faceted success as a songwriter, producer and record company owner, covering a wide range of musical styles.
As an individual, he has written more than 400 songs, and received countless music industry awards, including the prestigious Overall Producer of the Year Award from Billboard magazine in 1972. Curb's songwriting credits include songs for Roy Orbison, Sammy Davis Jr., Hank Williams Jr., The Osmond Brothers, Donny & Marie Osmond, Freddie Jackson, Andy Williams and Eddy Arnold among others.
Some of Curb's early success also came in composing and producing songs and soundtracks for movies, including the 1966 hit "Wild Angels" staring Peter Fonda and Nancy Sinatra, the music for the 1967 Billy Jack movie "The Born Losers," and "Burning Bridges," the theme for the 1970 Clint Eastwood movie "Kelly's Heroes." In all, Curb has composed or supervised music for more than 50 motion picture soundtracks.
As the founder and Chairman of Curb Records, Curb's company has produced more than 300 No. 1 records and been honored by Billboard magazine as 2001 Country Music Label of the Year and Radio & Records magazine as 2005 Overall Gold Label of the Year.
In the 1960s, Curb's record label became an important part of the rock 'n' roll music scene. In 1969, Curb merged his company with MGM Records and became president of the MGM Co.
He boosted MGM's standing, and when MGM was sold in 1974, Curb went on to build Curb Records and the Curb/Warner label, which released numerous top-selling singles. Within a short time, the company had five No. 1 records on the Billboard Chart.
After a successful stint in government, Curb returned to records and his label’s success has continued. In 1997, Curb Records was Billboard's No. 1 country label in four major categories for albums and singles, and the No. 1 country label, according to Nielsen SoundScan.
Curb serves as chairman of the Mike Curb Family Foundation which supports music education and works to restore historic music industry locations, in addition to supporting many Nashville community projects. He is also chairman of gospel music powerhouse Word Entertainment, which was Billboard magazine's Overall Top Imprint in that genre for 2006.
In 2007, Curb was honored as Nashvillian of the Year for his continued work to benefit the city, including establishing The Mike Curb College of Entertainment and Music Business, the largest college at Belmont University. Curb also has endowed the Curb Center for Art, Enterprise and Public Policy at Vanderbilt University, and serves on the governing board of Nashville's Fisk University. Curb was recently honored by Belmont University as Trustee Emeritus and Belmont’s Curb Event Center recently hosted the historic Presidential Debate between John McCain and Barack Obama.
A seven-time Grammy Award winner, CeCe Winans has been blessed with one of the music industry’s greatest voices. She has crossed all stylistic barriers with her inspirational delivery and powerful music, and has an endless list of accolades, best-selling albums, widespread industry recognition, and vast amounts of press coverage to confirm it.
She’s garnered multiple awards including GRAMMY®, Stellar’s, and Dove’s over the years, along with numerous gold-and platinum-certified albums as a solo artist and with brother BeBe as part of the hit-making duo BeBe & CeCe Winans.
She has graced the covers of high-profile publications such as Essence, Jet, CCM, and Today's Christian Woman, among countless others, and has made her rounds in the talk-show circuit, making appearances on The Today Show, Good Morning America, Oprah, Live with Regis & Kathie Lee, and more.
CeCe began her solo career with the Platinum certified album Alone in His Presence, released in 1995 and earned her a Grammy Award and two Dove Awards including Female Vocalist of the Year, an award she earned again in 1997. Winans' next release, Everlasting Love was released in 1998.
In 1999, Winans started her own recording company, PureSprings Gospel. Her first album on the label was Gold certified Alabaster Box, and in 2001 Winans released her next album, the self titled CeCe Winans and in 2003 Throne Room CD and live DVD all of which are Gold certified.
Purified, CeCe's chart-topping 2005 release, saw the singer entertaining her pop sensibilities, proving once again that she excels at interpreting buoyant, life-affirming songs that a wider audience could embrace. But her newest release and eighth solo album, Thy Kingdom Come is different: it finds the gospel veteran going back to what she does best, namely, lavishing honor and glory upon the King of Kings, while rallying His people to live like royal priesthood.
Thy Kingdom Come is one of the most empowering, moving collections of songs CeCe has recorded thus far. To make sure she reached the summit, she wrote or co-wrote 8 of the 14 songs on the project and she enlisted a who's-who of producers to help her get there, including Tommy Sims, Luther "Mano" Hanes, Percy Bady, new comer Christopher Capehart and his production partner Brannon Tunie, Cedric & Victor Caldwell, and even her own son, Alvin Love III.
CeCe is the visionary for the Always Sisters Conference which has taken place in Nashville for the last 3 years. This inspirational conference has helped to motivate and re-direct the life choices of thousands of teens and young women. This year, the conference name has been modified to Always Sisters/Forever Brothers and will include young men in the journey of learning and discovery.
Real life - including heartaches, happiness, fishing holes, and everything in between - has had a way of finding itself in the middle of Josh Turner songs since he first burst onto the national country music scene. It's those life experiences that keep drawing him back to what has become his unique yet easily identifiable country sound.
Nashville's first taste of that style came with his debut at the Grand Ole Opry in December 2001. The moment has become somewhat legendary in Opry storytelling circles. "When the curtain opened that night," the proverbial storyteller would begin, "no one holding a ticket to the show had ever heard of Josh Turner. But by the end of that chilly Nashville evening, the young singer was all anyone in the audience could talk about." Turner wowed the crowd with his self-penned "Long Black Train", the song that would eventually become his first hit. During this performance, the unknown baritone was showered with several standing ovations. Josh Turner's star began shining that night and hasn't dimmed.
Fast forward nearly six years: Turner has become a husband to wife Jennifer and a father to a two-year-old son Hampton, all while quietly ascending the path to country music superstardom.
Turner can also celebrate the success of first-class album sales. His debut album sold more than one million copies and his sophomore album, Your Man, was one of only four country albums to reach double-platinum status in 2006. His is also continuously heralded by critics as one of the brightest young stars in country music today and his voice has been compared to the legendary Johnny Cash. This status is marked by his invitation to be one the youngest members of the famed Grand Ole Opry.
The journey began in Philadelphia, Miss. where Stuart spent quality time with his dad watching the syndicated country-music shows on TV. Even on the family's small, black-and-white set, the stars’ costumes sparkled and dazzled, exerting a magnetic pull on a small-town kid with big ambitions.
At age 12, Stuart began playing mandolin with the Sullivan Family, and at age 13, Stuart moved to Nashville and joined Lester Flatt & the Nashville Grass.
After brief stints with Vassar Clements and Doc Watson in the wake of Flatt's death, Stuart landed the job he’d always wanted, playing in the Johnny Cash Show. Cash, Stuart knew, was the professor who could complete his education. And, away they went, down the road for tours that included June Carter, the Carter Family, and the Tennessee Three.
After six-plus years with the Johnny Cash Show, Stuart pulled together his own band and hit the road. The first single, “Arlene," snuck into the Top Twenty, and the second, “All Because of You," snuck into the Top Forty.
Later, Stuart launched on his new label, MCA, with the 1989 album, “Hillbilly Rock.” The title track became a Top Ten single. The next album, 1991’s “Tempted,” used that approach to put four more singles into the Top Twelve. Fueled by success, Stuart started writing songs as fast as he could come up with them.
He co-wrote “The Whiskey Ain’t Workin’," but he didn’t need the song, so after hearing a young singer named Travis Tritt on the radio Stuart decided to send a demo of “Whiskey” to him. Not only did Tritt want to record the song, but he wanted Stuart to recreate the guitar part he’d put on the demo.
“The Whiskey Ain’t Workin’” became a #2 smash, and it was followed by such duets as 1992's #7 hit, “This One's Gonna Hurt You (For a Long, Long Time)," and 1996's #23 hit, “Honky Tonkin’s What I Do Best." In 1992, they hit the road on the “No Hats Tour,” an irreverent rebuke to the many “hat acts” dominating Nashville at that time. Stuart contributed songwriting to Tritt's next three albums, played guitar on two of them and sang a duet vocal on “Double Trouble” from the last one.
Meanwhile, Stuart continued to rack up hits of his own. The 1992 album, “This One's Gonna Hurt You," yielded not only the title-track duet with Tritt but also three other Top Forty singles: “Now That's Country,” “High on a Mountain Top," and “Hey Baby." Stuart produced three more albums on MCA “Love and Luck," in 1994, the 1996 disc, “Honky Tonkin’s What I Do Best," and “The Pilgrim.”
In 2002, Stuart formed The Fabulous Superlatives. Since then he has released 6 CDs: “Country Music,” “Souls’ Chapel,” “Badlands,” “Live at the Ryman,” “Compadres” and “Cool Country Favorites.”
Marty Stuart is country music’s Renaissance man. His energetic enthusiasm has gone outside music, yielding impressive work as a photographer, writer, collector and arts executive. Stuart recently launched his own television show, THE MARTY STUART SHOW on the RFD network and published his second book of photography titled “Country Music: The Masters.” Stuart’s collection of music memorabilia, “Sparkle & Twang” is currently on display at the Autry National Center of the American West, after having been exhibited at the Tennessee State Museum and the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.
Keen to broaden the scope of his life-long passion to uncover the depths and eccentricities of Southern culture, Stuart now finds himself in the opening stages of combining music and the arts to continue his ambitious story. In all his endeavors -- much including his songwriting, singing, playing, and producing -- there is a storyteller at work, a man who listens to and translates the world he knows.