Musicians Played Historic Instruments for Country Music Hall of Fame ‘Big Night’ Fundraiser: Here’s Why

by Kayla Zadel
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What good are instruments if they’re just displayed in a museum? The Country Music Hall of Fame thought just that for a good reason.

For the Country Music Hall of Fame’s “Big Night at the Museum,” the museum paired historic instruments of artists past, with the artists of today. It’s a rare opportunity that the Country Music Hall of Fame staff took advantage of for this fundraiser that featured a number of the biggest artists in the genre.

Country Music Hall of Fame CEO Kyle Young told Rolling Stone that this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity maybe never happen again. It’s something that the Hall of Fame and the artists themselves took obviously took advantage of.

The pandemic has affected everyone, and the country music industry and the Hall of Fame are no exception. This is the first time that the Nashville-based museum’s putting something like this together. The video’s meant to show that country music’s an important thread in the fabric of America.

How Did the Country Music Hall of Fame Pick Which Artist Played Which Instrument?

Removing various historic instruments from their cases was the plan. Then, matching the instruments to artists and songs to highlight personal and artistic connections was the next step.

Carlene Carter plays the 1928 Gibson L-5 guitar because it was her grandmother Maybelle Carter’s instrument. Tim McGraw emotionally plays Keith Whitley’s C.W. Parsons acoustic guitar. Brad Paisley played Don Rich’s 1964 Fender Telecaster because of his connection to the late guitar legend.

The event was pre-taped and hosted by country legend Marty Stuart. The 62-year-old “This One’s Gonna Hurt You” singer played Lester Flatt’s 1950 Martin D-28 guitar. Stuart, like many in attendance at Wednesday night’s event, is also a Hall of Fame member.

The “Big Night” is only available to watch on the company’s Youtube channel. The organization’s accepting donations via Youtube Giving.

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