Sara Evans Officially Inducted Into The Grand Ole Opry
Sara Evans is now the newest member of the Grand Ole Opry, and I have one word for this: finally. As someone who has seen the singer-songwriter perform several times over the years, I am surprised this has not happened sooner.
The country singer was officially inducted into the Grand Ole Opry on Saturday, October 7, in Nashville, Tennessee, during the Opry’s 98th birthday weekend celebration. Not only was she inducted by a now fellow Opry member, but someone whom she grew up listening to, Crystal Gayle.
“I want to thank the Opry for asking me to become a member because this is a country artist’s dream come true,” said Evans. “And I have been dreaming about this my entire life.”
It was a long time coming for Evans as she made her Grand Ole Opry debut on March 7, 1998. The “If I Can’t Have You” singer had received the invitation to join the Opry family back in August from the Opry’s longest-serving member, Bill Anderson, during her sold-out concert at the Ryman Auditorium.
Evans has shown nothing but love and grace for the genre over the years and continues to prove why she is and now will forever be a part of the country music family. She has released nine studio albums and achieved five No. 1 hits, including “Born To Fly” and “A Real Fine Place To Start” to date.
Fans can watch Evans screw her nameplate into the Opry wall in a clip shared to the Opry Instagram account by clicking here. To say the 52-year-old is glowing inside and out would be an understatement.
Sara Evans will hit the road starting on November 11 for her 2023 “Go Tell It On The Mountain” Christmas Tour. Visit saraevans.com for ticket information and more.
Country Stars Who Embrace The Grand Ole Opry
As we celebrate Carrie Underwood’s upcoming 15th Anniversary as a member of Nashville’s Grand Ole Opry, we look at twelve country music stars who have embraced all things Grand Ole Opry since their careers began and are now members of the Opry.
The Opry member list is not one that all country superstars are on. A handful of country stars never really caught on to the Opry tradition for whatever reason, including superstars like George Strait, Miranda Lambert, Tim McGraw, and Kane Brown.
Let’s focus on the stars who love and cherish the history and tradition of The Grand Ole Opry.
Opry Induction date - MAY 10TH, 2008 - Carrie's Opry dream came true on March 15, 2008, when Randy Travis surprised her on the Opry stage with an invitation to join the cast of the show. "Let me think about it," she said playfully before responding with an emphatic "Yes!" as she wiped tears from her eyes. She was introduced to the Opry by Country Music Hall of Famer Bill Anderson and Garth Brooks inducted her.
Opry Induction date - OCTOBER 6TH, 1990 - Garth made his debut on June 24, 1989, and wept tears of joy on the occasion. He joined the show's cast a year later, with Johnny Russell inducting him, and he has called that night one of the proudest moments of his career.
Opry Induction date - OCTOBER 23RD, 2010 - On his Opry induction night backstage, Blake said that records and awards don't mean as much to him as the Grand Ole Opry. He said, "This is the reason that you move to Nashville to me. This is what I wanted from the beginning."
Opry Induction date - JULY 16TH, 2019 - Before becoming a member, Luke told us it was a big deal to him to play the Opry. He said, "It just seems like this thing that is unattainable, and it seems like something that you will never be able to do. I wish the Opry called me, but I was fighting for it from the start, and that was really something super important to me."
Opry Induction date - FEBRUARY 17TH, 2001- When Brad was inducted into the Grand Ole Opry in 2001, George Jones wrote him a letter that Paisley read to the crowd. It said in part, "I am counting on you to carry on the tradition and make folks sit up and listen to what good country music should sound like."
Opry Induction date - DECEMBER 10TH, 2022- Garth Brooks invited her to join the Grand Ole Opry on GMA Live on TV as she cried in accepting the honor.
Opry Induction date - APRIL 16TH, 2019 - Kelsea was inducted as a Grand Ole Opry member in 2019. At the time, she notably became the Opry's youngest member in its nearly 100-year history since being founded in 1925.
Opry Induction date - APRIL 21ST, 2012 - Keith became a member of the Grand Ole Opry after being surprised by Vince Gill two weeks earlier with an invitation to join the Opry.
Opry Induction date - OCTOBER 16TH, 2012 - Darius told us a couple of years after his Opry member induction, "It will always be someplace special. It will always be my home now in Nashville. I just love it, and every time I walk in, I touch my plaque, and when I leave, I touch my plaque because that moment when Vince (Gill) inducted me was the first time I felt like I was part of country music."
Opry Induction date - AUGUST 12TH, 2022 - Opry member and friend Reba McEntire invited Little Big Town to join the Grand Ole Opry in 2014. As the group finished a three-song set with "Pontoon," Reba appeared from the side of the stage, improvising on the song's last few words and asking the question Karen, Kimberly, Jimi, and Phillip had been hoping to hear. "I know the Grand Ole Opry is very important to y'all, because this is the first place you guys played together as a group in 1999. I have been asked to ask y'all, Little Big Town, would y'all like to be a member of the Grand Ole Opry?"
Dierks has always been a champion for the Grand Ole Opry and even introduced it to Elle King, who sang with him on the Opry stage in 2016. She recently made her solo debut on the Opry.
Opry Induction date - AUGUST 3RD, 2021- Grand Ole Opry member Dolly Parton extended the coveted invitation to Carly after 85+ appearances.