According to a press release from his label, MCA Nashville recording artist and Belmont alumnus Josh Turner was invited to become the newest member of the Grand Ole Opry this past weekend. Turner, a 2001 graduate of the School of Music, will be formally inducted into the Opry family by Vince Gill on Sat., Oct. 27.
In an interview with The Tennessean, Opry chief Pete Fisher said, “He has just blended in so well with the cast and really represents what the Opry stands for, and that is a respect for tradition but certainly relevancy for today. Josh has built his music and his career on tradition, but he comes out and does it in a real new fresh way and with a fresh attitude.”
Turner’s Dec. 21, 2001 Opry debut is one of the most memorable in recent history. Though he hadn’t yet had a song released to country radio at the time, the singer earned a standing ovation for the song that would become his breakthrough hit, “Long Black Train,” during the performance of the song and a second standing ovation following an encore.