The Grand Ole Opry is one of Music City's most enduring icons. Membership into the exclusive club is an acknowledgment of the pinnacle of success in the country music industry. But with any honor, some artists get overlooked. These five snubs will have you scratching your head.
5. Lady Antebellum
Some will no doubt say that Lady Antebellum hasn't been around long enough to be enshrined. However, recent inductions of Chris Janson and Dustin Lynch prove that longevity is not a requirement. Lady A has multiple CMAs and ACMs, as well as a Grammy, and nine number one singles.
If you prefer your Opry members to have a few more years under their belts, look no further than Shenandoah. The Muscle Shoals group had a remarkable run of success in the late 80s and early 90s, charting 26 singles with five number one hits. Their mantles aren't bare either with a CMA, an ACM, and a Grammy to their name.
3. Miranda Lambert
Two female artists debuted in 2005 with decade-defining albums - Miranda Lambert with "Kerosene" and Carrie Underwood with "Some Hearts." While Carrie's experience on American Idol may have given her the early push, Lambert has built an impressive resume on her own including becoming in 2018 the most awarded artist in ACM history. There is no reason that there's not enough room on the Opry's fabled stage for both these performers.
2. John Anderson
We could mention the five number ones. We could mention the 30 year career. We could mention how he helped bring downhome twang back into country music. We could even mention how he's managed to stay current with a younger generation of country fans through his association with Big and Rich and the MuzikMafia. But we feel his contribution to country music is best summed up in four words: "Just a swingin..."
1. Brooks & Dunn
Are you kidding me? Brooks and Dunn are accomplished performers in their own right but together they are the Ruth and Gehrig of country music. 20 number 1 singles, an unprecedented 14 CMAs for vocal duo of the year (would have been 15 straight if not for Montgomery Gentry n 2000), and a couple of Grammys to boot. Speaking of boots, "Boot Scootin' Boogie" helped turn line dancing into a national craze.
Honorable Mention - Tanya Tucker
Maybe we should give the Opry a break. After all, we almost forgot to include the legendary Tanya Tucker on our list. The child star-turned-cautionary-tale-turned-triumphant-comeback-artist spans the decades from country's Hee-Haw era to its modern crossover success. If anyone embodies the spirit of Nashville through the years, it's Ms. Tucker.