The Country Music Hall of Fame will gain three new members in 2016 with the announcement of the selection of Randy Travis, Charlie Daniels and Fred Foster.
Randy Travis was elected in the Modern Era category which is comprised of artists who first achieved national prominence between 20 and 45 years ago. He broke onto the scene in the mid-1980's at a time when the majority of country music was more pop than C&W. His first singles ushered in a new era emphasizing a more traditional sound. He was also the first country artist to go platinum with a debut album and the first to go multi-platinum.
Travis first hit the country top ten in 1985 with the song 1982 and, over the length of his career, has been in the top ten thirty times with his last being 2009's remake of his own hit I Told You So with Carrie Underwood. Sixteen of those singles went to number 1 including On the Other Hand (1986), Diggin' Up Bones (1986), Forever and Ever, Amen (1987), I Told You So (1988) and Three Wooden Crosses (2002).
Randy's album output includes five chart toppers and a number of theme-based albums along with a long string of religious and gospel sets.
Travis was on-hand for the announcement this morning, a rarity in the years since 2013 stroke that left him with a number of disabilities. His wife, Mary Davis-Travis, spoke on his behalf.
Charlie Daniels will go in under the Veterans Era category for artists who have been prominent for at least forty years. Daniels' career goes back to the late-50's with his first success coming in 1964 when Elvis Presley recorded his song It Hurts Me. He also played many sessions, including bass on three Bob Dylan albums (Nashville Skyline, Self Portrait, New Morning).
Charlie's first success as an artist in his own right came in 1973 when his Uneasy Rider went to number 9 on the Billboard Hot 100. His 1979 hit The Devil Went Down to Georgia hit number 3 on the Hot 100 and topped the Country Singles while In America went to number 11 on the Pop and 13 on the Country charts.
Overall, Daniels only had three top ten country singles, the previously mentioned Devil, Drinkin' My Baby Goodbye (1986 / #8) and Boogie Woogie Fiddle Country Blues (1988 / #10) and five top ten country albums:
- Saddle Tramp (1976 / #7)
- Million Mile Reflections (1979 / #1)
- Full Moon (1980 / #8)
- Windows (1982 / #7)
- Simple Man (1989 / #2)