Tuesday, June 23, 2009
– Montgomery Gentry became the newest member of the Grand Ole Opry tonight, inducted by Opry members Little Jimmy Dickens and Marty Stuart before an Opry House audience including family, friends and fans.
After the two had performed hits including My Town and Something To Be Proud Of, Stuart officially inducted the duo into the Opry, saying, "You guys have worked so hard for so many years. Your legacy stands right here...It is my pleasure to welcome Montgomery Gentry to the Grand Ole Opry family."
After being presented their Opry member awards by Dickens and Stuart, the duo hugged before sharing their thoughts with the Opry audience. "All day I've been trying to conjure up the words to say what this means," Gentry said. "But there aren't enough words to describe what this night means to us. Thank you all so much."
His voice cracking, Eddie Montgomery added, "I remember sittin' in an old junky station wagon listening to the Grand Ole Opry with my dad. He'd say, 'It don't matter what you do in country music; if you don't become a member of the Grand Ole Opry, you ain't got there yet.'"
"I promise you me and T. won't let you down," Montgomery continued before lifting his member award, looking up, and concluding, "Dad, we made it!"
The duo, which made their Grand Ole Opry debut on March 3, 2000, concluded the show along with Dickens and Stuart by singing the song that got their career started, Hillbilly Shoes.
The Opry Member Award presented to Montgomery Gentry during the induction is a 14-inch bronze and oak wood replica of the Opry's vintage microphone stand designed by sculptor Bill Rains. The duo's first official role as Opry members is to host the Star-Spangled America's Opry Weekend Special airing on country radio stations across the country Independence Day Weekend.