Country music legend Ronnie Milsap leads a trio of newcomers as the newest inductees into the Country Music Hall of Fame. He's joined by Hank Cochran and Mac Wiseman.
Milsap was named by the Country Music Association to the Hall of Fame in Nashville along with country songwriter Cochran and Wiseman, a singer, musician and businessman, reported CMT.com
. Milsap, Cochran and Wiseman will be honored during the hall's annual medallion ceremony later this year in Nashville.
The Hall of Fame announced that Milsap will be inducted in the modern era category
, while Cochran will enter the hall in the rotating songwriter category and Wiseman in the veteran category.
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"I've wanted to be in the Country Music Hall of Fame for as long as I can remember," Milsap told a news conference Tuesday, according to Rolling Stone magazine
. "I love making records. So we keep doing these things year after year after year, and to finally be recognized, I thank you. I'm so grateful and so honored, and I want to do things continually to make you proud of the Country Music Hall of Fame."
Born blind into an Appalachian family and sent off to live with his grandparents, Milsap went on to become one of the most successful country performers in a career that started in the 1960s.
"Ronnie Milsap's passionate vocals and rousing showmanship made him a favorite concert attraction for more than four decades," Thomas Goldsmith wrote about country music performer for the hall's website.
"His command of country, country-pop, rock and roll, rhythm and blues, funk, pop, and classical music made the singer-keyboardist a formidable entertainer who defies narrow classification. Nevertheless, he's one of country’s most successful artists, with six Grammy awards for Best Male Country Vocal performance, four CMA awards, and thirty-five No. 1 hits," wrote Goldsmith.
The Record Industry Association of America certified seven of Milsap's albums gold. His "Greatest Hits Volume 2" album went platinum, and "Greater Hits" offering went double-platinum, according to the Hall of Fame. Milsaps' "Greatest Video Hits" also reached gold.
Milsap played piano and sang on Elvis Presley's "Kentucky Rain" in 1970 and moved to Nashville two years later started his run on the country charts with hits like "I Hate You" and "That Girl Who Waits on Tables," according to the Hall of Fame.
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