Country songwriters Alan Jackson, Bill Anderson and Steve Dorff will be inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame this summer, joining the ranks of more than 400 tunesmiths.
Established in 1969, the Hall of Fame throws an official induction ceremony every year, recognizing writers from all genres. Roots musicians dominate the competition in 2018, with fellow inductee John Mellencamp – whose heartland rock & roll anthems during the 1980s helped lay the brickwork for Americana’s emergence several decades later – tipping the scales in favor of blue-collar songwriting and Southern twang. He’s joined by fellow solo artists like Jackson and Anderson, as well as behind-the-scenes songwriters like Dorff, who provided George Strait, Kenny Rogers and Clay Walker with some of their biggest hits.
Years before launching his own career as a solo artist, Whisperin’ Bill Anderson landed his first Number One hit with “City Lights,” which Ray Price sent to the top of the charts in 1958. Six years later, Connie Smith set a record with Anderson’s “Once a Day,” which became the longest-running chart-topper by any female country singer. Anderson recorded his own hits during the decades that followed, writing the bulk of his biggest songs without outside help. Similarly, Alan Jackson had a hand in penning many of his own smashes, including “Don’t Rock the Jukebox,” “Chattahoochee” and “I Don’t Even Know Your Name.”
The Songwriters Hall of Fame’s 49th annual Induction and Awards ceremony takes place June 14th in New York City.