In the 50-year history of the live CMA Awards telecasts, the announcement and celebration of the newest members of the Country Music Hall of Fame has gone from a live, surprise reveal of the inductees to recent years’ all-too-brief recognition of the new members’ accomplishments during the three-hour telecast.
But on November 2nd, Brad Paisley – who co-hosts the ceremony with Carrie Underwood – hints that at least one of this year’s three inductees, Randy Travis, will be honored during the gala celebration. In a Facebook post this week, Paisley made reference to Travis’s emotional appearance at Sunday’s Hall of Fame Medallion Ceremony, during which the singer, who suffered a debilitating stroke in 2013, surprised attendees by singing a portion of the hymn, “Amazing Grace.”
“I’m still reeling from what I witnessed Sunday night,” Paisley wrote on Wednesday, mentioning his current single “Today.” “The spirit of the song ‘Today’ was brought to life right before my eyes. Some of you have seen the video, and there’s a moment where a man named Ralph Duquette rises from a wheelchair to walk his daughter down the aisle. Well Sunday, at the Country Music Hall of Fame, Randy Travis gave country music an equally inspiring moment. . . And although most of you weren’t there for this, I can’t wait to honor him again, this time in front of the nation at the CMAs in a few weeks. All of us are working to make this year the best it’s ever been. Legends like Randy deserve it. God bless country music. I’m so proud to be a part of it.”
Travis joins producer-songwriter Fred Foster and musician Charlie Daniels as the newest members of the Country Music Hall of Fame, which inducted its first members, Hank Williams, Jimmie Rodgers and songwriter-publisher Fred Rose, in 1961.
The 50th CMA Awards air live from Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena on Wednesday, November 2nd at 8 p.m. ET.