Randy Travis, Charlie Daniels Named Country Music Hall of Fame Inductees On This Day in 2016

by Jim Casey
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Randy Travis, Charlie Daniels, and Fred Foster were named Country Music Hall of Fame inductees on March 29, 2016, during an announcement ceremony at the Hall’s Rotunda.

Randy was elected as the Modern Era Artist, while Charlie was voted in as the Veteran Era Artist. Fred Foster, the founder of Monument Records, joined in the Non-Performer category. The trio was formally inducted into the esteemed organization on Oct. 16, 2016.

Fred Foster Builds a Monument

Fred Foster, who died at the age of 87 in 2019, was the first inductee to be announced during the ceremony on March 29. The founder of Monument Record and publisher played an important role in the careers of a number of artists, including Dolly Parton and Kris Kristofferson.

At the time of the ceremony, 84-year-old Fred provided plenty of levity when he inadvertently let the cat out of the bag that Randy and Charlie were joining him in the Hall.

“I’m truly honored to be coming into the Hall with two of the greats, Charlie Daniels and Randy Travis,” said Fred. “I know one thing, it is the most special [moment] I’ve ever had in my career in the business.”

Charlie Daniels Fiddles His Way to the Top

Of course, Fred’s premature announcement didn’t dampen the mood in the least. As Charlie took the stage for his jubilant moment, his family, friends, and media members in attendance greeted Daniels with a standing ovation.

“I’m flabbergasted, I really am,” said Charlie, who died in 2020 at age 83. “This is the one that you don’t even dare dream about. You can work toward other goals, there’s no way to work toward this goal. It’s something that either happens, or it don’t.”

As the fiddle-playing frontman of the Charlie Daniels Band, Charlie scored a number of Top 20 singles over his 60-plus-year career. Of course, Charlie’s 1979 No. 1 hit, “The Devil Went Down to Georgia,” became his signature song. But Charlie also found success on the charts with “Drinkin’ My Baby Goodbye,” “In America,” and more. Charlie became a member of the Grand Ole Opry in 2008 and joined the Musicians Hall of Fame in 2009.

Randy Travis Joins the Hall, Amen

Finally, Randy Travis made his way to the podium to be recognized. Of course, Randy was—and still is—recovering from a stroke he suffered in 2013. The baritone-voiced legend received a rousing ovation.

Randy was able to say “thank you,” before his wife, Mary Davis-Travis, read a prepared statement on his behalf.

During his career, Randy recorded more than a dozen No. 1 hits, including “Forever and Ever, Amen,” “Diggin’ Up Bones,” “Deeper Than the Holler,” and more. Randy earned dozens of prestigious awards over the years, including six Grammy Awards, five CMA Awards, 10 ACM Awards, and more.

Randy suffered a near-fatal stroke in 2013, but he has made improvements with his speaking, walking, and singing.

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