Four-time Grammy winner Rosanne Cash, who has actively advocated against gun violence for more than two decades and spoken out on myriad other issues throughout her career, will be the latest recipient of the Americana Music Association’s “Spirit of Americana” Free Speech Award. The singer-songwriter will receive the honor during the 17th annual Americana Honors & Awards event on September 12th at Nashville’s Ryman Auditorium.
Cash, who penned an impassioned op-ed piece on gun control for the New York Times following the 2017 mass shooting in Las Vegas, is also a board member of the Content Creators Coalition (C3), a membership-based, artist-run non-profit advocacy group representing creators in the digital landscape. In 2014, Cash represented artists and the Americana Music Association in testimony before Congress on the issue of intellectual property rights and digital music licensing. The “Spirit of Americana” Free Speech honor is presented in partnership with the First Amendment Center.
“It’s fitting that Rosanne Cash’s first studio recording was her rendition of Kris Kristofferson’s ‘Broken Freedom Song’ in 1974,” notes First Amendment Center President Ken Paulson. “That foreshadowed an extraordinary musical career distinguished by its honesty, integrity and compassion.”
Cash’s father, music icon Johnny Cash, received the inaugural “Spirit of Americana” Free Speech Award in 2002. Her 2014 LP, The River and the Thread, was the most-played album on the Americana Radio Airplay chart that year, logging 10 weeks at Number One. The LP earned three Grammy statuettes. Cash is expected to release a new album later this year.
The Americana Honors & Awards show takes place during the annual AmericanaFest, which runs from September 11th to 16th and will include showcase performances from Brandy Clark, Lee Ann Womack, American Aquarium and more.