NASHVILLE, TN — Four legends of Music City will be honored posthumously with induction into the Music City Walk of Fame: country-folk and Americana singer-songwriter John Prine; influential country and pop vocalist Patsy Cline; Dr. Paul T. Kwami, musical director of the Fisk Jubilee Singers® for 28 years; and industry executive Ed Hardy.
The induction ceremony will take place on Monday, October 10, 2022, at 11 a.m. at Music City Walk of Fame Park. Members of the public are invited to view the ceremony.
“Each of these four inductees left an enduring mark on Music City, and their influence continues today,” said Kevin Lavender, Executive Vice President at 5/3 Bank and chairman of the Board of Directors of the Nashville Convention & Visitors Corp. “The Music City Walk of Fame is proud to pay tribute to these legends with their induction, and we are especially honored to have their family members attend to accept on their behalf.”
The induction ceremony will bestow the 94th, 95th, 96th and 97th stars on the Music City Walk of Fame. Inductees are recognized for their significant contributions to preserving the musical heritage of Nashville and for contributing to the world through song.
Making appearances will be country, pop and rockabilly’s “Little Miss Dynamite” Brenda Lee, who will present for John Prine; GRAMMY-winning singer, actress, author and television personality Trisha Yearwood, who will present for Patsy Cline; best-selling and most awarded female gospel artist of all time CeCe Winans, who will present for Dr. Paul T. Kwami; and country superstar Garth Brooks, who will be the presenter for Ed Hardy. Each inductee will have a family member accepting the induction on their behalf: Prine’s wife, Fiona Whelan Prine; Cline’s daughter, Julie Fudge; Kwami’s son, Delali Kwami; and Hardy’s wife, Kim Hardy.
Prine released more than 18 albums and is a four-time GRAMMY winner, a GRAMMY Lifetime Achievement Award honoree, a seven-time Americana Music Award-winner, a PEN New England Lyrics Award recipient and member of both the Songwriters Hall of Fame and the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame. He is being celebrated with the You Got Gold: Celebrating the Life & Songs of John Prine festival from October 7-12. He passed away on April 7, 2020. Cline was a Grand Ole Opry member who bridged the gap to mainstream pop. Her classics include “Crazy,” “I Fall To Pieces” and “Walking After Midnight.” She tragically died in a plane crash on March 5, 1963.
Kwami was Musical Director, Curb-Beaman Chair and alumni member of the Fisk Jubilee Singers®, and under his leadership the a capella ensemble of black spirituals earned a GRAMMY and performed at Carnegie Hall and the White House. He died on September 10, 2022, at age 70. Hardy was an active executive in Nashville’s music and hospitality industries, serving as chairman of Music City Inc.; on the NCVC Board of Directors, including as chairman; as President of Great American Country (GAC); as President and Chairman of the Country Music Association Board of Directors; and as CMA’s interim director. He passed away on July 31, 2022, at age 73.
The Music City Walk of Fame was created in 2006 on Nashville’s Music Mile, a roughly one-mile stretch that connects downtown to Music Row. Permanent sidewalk medallions with the names of inductees are displayed in a star design.
The Music City Walk of Fame is an official project of Music City Inc., the charitable foundation of the Nashville Convention & Visitors Corp and is produced with the support of founding sponsor Gibson Brands. Additional sponsors include the City of Nashville and Metro Parks and Recreation. Nominations are open to the public and are accepted in the categories of Artist, Musician, Songwriter and Producer/Music Industry Executive. Application forms are reviewed by the Music City Walk of Fame anonymous selection committee. For more information about the Music City Walk of Fame, go to visitmusiccity.com/walkoffame.
John Prine. Regarded as one of the English language’s premier phrase-turners, John Prine is a four-time GRAMMY winner, a GRAMMY Lifetime Achievement Award honoree, a seven-time Americana Music Award-winner, a PEN New England Lyrics Award recipient and member of both the Songwriters Hall of Fame and the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame. Since his debut in 1971, Prine released over 18 albums and has had his songs recorded by Johnny Cash, Carly Simon, Bette Midler, Bonnie Raitt, Norah Jones, George Strait, Miranda Lambert, Zac Brown Band and many others, while drawing effusive praise from Bob Dylan, Kris Kristofferson, Bonnie Raitt, Roger Waters, Tom Petty, Bruce Springsteen and more, who knew him as a smiling, shuffling force for good.
Patsy Cline. Patsy Cline was an American Country music singer whose talent and wide-ranging appeal made her one of the classic performers of the genre, bridging the gap between country music and more mainstream audiences. She was born in Winchester, Va., in 1932, failed an audition for the Grand Ole Opry in 1948, and got a record contact in 1954. But her big break came in 1957 when Patsy appeared on the Jan. 21, 1957, television broadcast of the Arthur Godfrey Talent Scouts and sang “Walking After Midnight.” It became an instant hit on both Country and Pop charts. In 1959, she moved to Nashville to pursue her career full time. In 1960, Patsy became a member of the Grand Ole Opry; the first to do so simply by asking. She went on to record hits “I Fall To Pieces” and “Crazy,” which would go on to become not only songwriter Willie Nelson’s favorite rendition of his song but the No.1 jukebox song of all time, as awarded by the AMOA (Amusement & Music Operators Association). She performed with fellow Opry stars at Carnegie Hall in New York City and toured with Johnny Cash’s Shower of Stars at the Hollywood Bowl, making her the only female country artist to perform at both Carnegie Hall and The Hollywood Bowl. She was the first female country artist to headline her own show in Las Vegas with a 35-day run at The Mint. She tragically died in 1963 in a plane crash.
Dr. Paul T. Kwami. World-renowned Musical Director, Curb-Beaman Chair and alumni member of the Fisk Jubilee Singers®, Dr. Paul T. Kwami, brilliantly preserved Nashville’s longest running musical institution while forging on the storied ensemble into a new millennium, from 1994-2022. The Fisk Jubilee Singers®, an a capella ensemble that performs black spirituals, reached new heights under his inspired leadership– earning their first GRAMMY Award for their 2020 album Celebrating Fisk! (The 150th Anniversary Album), as well as a National Medal of the Arts, Americana Music Association’s Lifetime Achievement Legacy Award, National Museum of African American Music’s Rhapsody & Rhythm Award and Dove Award, in addition to their induction to the Gospel Music Hall of Fame and Music City Walk of Fame. Dr. Kwami ensured the group embarked on meaningful missions like “A Sacred Journey” to his home country of Ghana during its 50th Independence Jubilee, and held international performances in Spain, Italy, the United Kingdom and Germany, too. Performances at Carnegie Hall, the White House, Ryman Auditorium, Apollo Theater, The Kennedy Center and more highlight the list of prestigious venues he conducted in. The paramount history of the Fisk Jubilee Singers®, and Dr. Kwami’s decades-long leadership, are chronicled in 150th-anniversary commemorative book, Heritage & Honor, which was released in June 2022.
Ed Hardy. Ed Hardy was a dedicated contributor to the growth and expansion of Nashville’s music and hospitality industries. He was the chairman of Music City Inc., the Nashville Convention & Visitors Corp foundation, and previously served on the NCVC Board of Directors, including as chairman. During his career, he served as President of Great American Country (GAC) from 2004 until his retirement in 2012. He also served as President and Chairman of the Country Music Association Board of Directors, as well as CMA’s interim director in 2013 and on the CMA Foundation Board of Directors from 2014-2021. His long career included stints in radio and in internet-streaming broadcast with MeasureCast. His community endeavors included working with Operation Song and as President of the Board of Directors at W.O. Smith Music School.
Visit the NCVC’s website at www.visitmusiccity.com