Rascal Flatts to be added to Music City Walk of Fame
Rascal Flatts, which includes Joe Don Rooney of Picher, will be part of the eighth class of inductees to the Music City Walk of Fame, presented by founding sponsor Gibson Guitar. The other honorees are Eddy Arnold, Little Jimmy Dickens, Bobby Hebb, Kris Kristofferson and Mel Tillis.
The honorees will be recognized officially with the unveiling of commemorative sidewalk markers on Sunday, Nov. 7, beginning at 2 p.m. in Walk of Fame Park in downtown Nashville, Tenn. 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, and is produced with the support of presenting sponsor Gibson Guitar and sponsors GAC, the City of Nashville and Metro Parks.
“We are pleased to honor this amazing class of inductees,” said Butch Spyridon, president of the Nashville Convention & Visitors Bureau, in a news release. “Each honoree represents the immense talent, creativity and diversity 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 48 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 Fourth and Fifth 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.
“Gibson Guitar is honored to continue the tradition of the Music City Walk of Fame which celebrates the vast wealth of talent and creativity that originates in Nashville,” said Henry Juszkiewicz, Chairman and CEO of Gibson Guitar, in the release. “This class of inductees is no exception. From our own signature artist Kris Kristofferson to Rascal Flatts along with Little Jimmy Dickens, Bobby Hebb, Eddy Arnold and Mel Tillis, this exceptional group of artists keep Nashville’s place in music history strong.”
In just 10 years, Rascal Flatts has become one of the most honored acts in country music history, reaching heights and achieving milestones reserved for the genre’s elite. They have set more venue attendance records than any country act en route to ticket sales of six million and counting. They have sold 20 million albums and earned 11 No. 1 singles. All six of their albums are platinum or multi-platinum and every one is among Billboard’s Top 100 Albums of the Decade. They have won more than three dozen awards from the ACM, CMA, AMA and People’s Choice, among others, and they have received that ultimate honor for those who have impacted the culture—a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Behind those statistics is an accomplishment more basic than numbers, more important than any trophy—for the past decade, the music of Rascal Flatts has been the soundtrack to countless lives. Songs like “These Days,” “Mayberry,” “What Hurts The Most,” “My Wish,” “Stand,” “Here,” “Here Comes Goodbye” and “Summer Nights” have soothed and uplifted, fired up, mellowed out and otherwise impacted millions.
Their place in country music history may be assured, but Gary LeVox, Jay DeMarcus and Rooney retain a newcomer’s passion about capturing magic with each new project. Now, with the Nov. 16 release of their latest, “Nothing Like This,” they have done it once again, taking their career and their legacy another long step forward. The album is a microcosm of all the things the band does well which is to say it touches on many of the best aspects of 21st-century country music. It is first and foremost uplifting, with songs like “Why Wait” and “Play” kicking off the proceedings with the call to enjoy life no matter what our circumstances. It features both the throwback groove of “They Try” and the fresh sparkle of “All Night To Get There.” “Summer Young” is an uptempo celebration of the season of warmth and romance and “I Won’t Let Go” is “You’ve Got A Friend” for the new millennium, a song steeped in the strength of love and friendship in times of trouble. The title cut finds a way to bring freshness to the subject of love and sees Gary bringing a disarming desperation to his vocal. Evident throughout is the group’s ability to recognize the best in Nashville songwriting.
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