NASHVILLE, TN October 15, 2019 — Larry Gatlin, Dwight Yoakam, Marcus Hummon, Kostas, Rivers Rutherford and Sharon Vaughn were officially inducted into the prestigious Nashville Songwriters Hall Fame last night in front of a sold-out industry audience at the Music City Center. The musical contributions of the newest inductees were celebrated through star-studded performances of some of their biggest hits during NaSHOF’s 49th Anniversary Hall of Fame Gala.
“Every year our organization has the distinct pleasure of honoring the best of the best songwriters in our community with induction into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame,” said Sarah Cates, Board chair of the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame Foundation. “Our class of 2019 is an exceptional example of the high standards that have helped make Nashville the songwriting capital of the world. It is our distinct pleasure to welcome Marcus Hummon, Kostas and Rivers Rutherford in the songwriter category; Sharon Vaughn in the veteran songwriter category; Dwight Yoakam as our songwriter/artist and Larry Gatlin as this year's veteran songwriter/artist.”
The evening was filled with special performances and moments, kicking off with Kostas’ induction by longtime friend and producer Tony Brown. A pair of performances highlighted the songwriter’s stellar career: Holly Williams with “Timber, I’m Falling In Love” and Parker Millsap with “Ain’t That Lonely Yet.”
Next, songwriter Darrell Scott inducted Marcus Hummon and then joined Sara Evans on "Born To Fly.” Hummon’s son Levi Hummon was joined by The Dirt Band’s Jeff Hanna & Hall of Fame songwriter Matraca Berg to perform “Bless The Broken Road.”
Artist/writer Dwight Yoakam was inducted by former CEO and Chairman of Warner Music Group Cameron Strang. During the segment, two of Yoakam’s most memorable hits were performed. First Brandy Clark with “The Heart That You Own,” followed by Jeffrey Steele with “Guitars, Cadillacs.”
Rivers Rutherford was inducted by Hall of Fame songwriter Tom Shapiro. Two of Rutherford’s most enduring hits were then performed: Brett James and Hillary Lindsey sang “When I Get Where I’m Going,” followed by Country Music Hall of Famers Kix Brooks & Ronnie Dunn, who performed “Ain't Nothing 'Bout You.”
Next up, Sharon Vaughn was inducted by Hall of Fame songwriter/artist Bill Anderson. The Isaacs joined John Rich for a rendition of “Y’all Come Back Saloon” before Hall of Fame songwriter/artist Garth Brooks sang “My Heroes Have Always Been Cowboys.”
The evening concluded with the induction of Larry Gatlin by Hall of Fame songwriter/artist Vince Gill. Gill was joined by Gatlin Brothers Steve & Rudy for “I’ve Done Enough Dyin’ Today.” The Oak Ridge Boys closed the evening with “All The Gold In California.”
In a special tribute alongside the hall of fame inductions, Hall of Fame songwriter Pat Alger presented the organization’s Frances Williams Preston Mentor Award to the late Ralph Murphy in honor of his many years of service and stewardship to the songwriting community. Throughout his career, the songwriter/publisher/author/advocate encouraged, nurtured and championed songwriters around the world. His daughter Kerry Murphy accepted the award.
About the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame:
Induction into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame is one of the nation’s most highly prized songwriting achievements. Since 1970, the Hall has enshrined more than 200 of the greatest writers from all genres of music ever to put words to music in Music City, including such luminaries as Bill Anderson, Bobby Braddock, Garth Brooks, Felice & Boudleaux Bryant, Johnny Cash, Don & Phil Everly, Harlan Howard, Kris Kristofferson, Loretta Lynn, Bob McDill, Bill Monroe, Willie Nelson, Roy Orbison, Dolly Parton, Dottie Rambo, Jimmie Rodgers, Fred Rose, Don Schlitz, Cindy Walker and Hank Williams. Operated by the non-profit Nashville Songwriters Foundation, the Hall of Fame is dedicated to honoring Nashville’s rich legacy of songwriting excellence through preservation, celebration and education. More information is available at: http://www.nashvillesongwritersfoundation.com/.