“My music journey started in Texas, and I’m proud that Texas Heritage Songwriters’ Association is bringing me back home to accept this award,” said Ronnie Dunn. “It’s a privilege to join the hall of fame with other talented artists I consider friends and mentors.”
Before moving to Nashville and becoming a part of country music’s most successful duo in history, Dunn’s connection to music originated right here in Texas. He was born in Coleman, Texas to a country music singing father and a conservative church going mother.
“I started listening to music with my father who was a guitar player and a singer in a band. In a way, this was his aspiration—to do what I’m doing now. My father loved Merle Haggard, George Jones, Tammy Wynette, Loretta Lynn, hardcore country,” Dunn remembers. “When I became a teenager I would sneak off and listen to rock too.”
From beer joints in West Texas and hole-in-the-walls in New Mexico to dive bars in Oklahoma, Dunn’s road to music stardom was a winding one. However, Dunn’s musical roots have always been reflected in his music—a combination of hardcore country, rock and gospel.
This year, Texas Heritage Songwriters’ Association will induct Dunn into its hall of fame along with Sonny Curtis and Roger Miller. The non-profit organization is dedicated to honoring and celebrating Texas songwriters who have played an important role in defining and interpreting our state’s distinctive culture.
“Starting out in West Texas, my songwriting career was profoundly influenced by those musical beginnings,” Curtis said of his time as lead guitarist with Buddy Holly and the Crickets. “I, like so many other writers and artists, owe a large part of my inspiration to Texas and its musicians.”
The spirit of Texas is rich in culture and deep in heritage, and it’s continues to follow generations of Texas songwriters throughout their careers. As the Texas Heritage Songwriters’ Association states, “Texas songwriters, past and present, reflect in rhythm and rhyme, the essence of our culture; they are the poets of their time and have become the symbolic troubadours of our state.”
Since 2006, the organization has been producing an annual public event, Texas Heritage Songwriters Hall of Fame Awards Show, which serves as an induction ceremony for its hall of fame honorees. This year’s award show will take place on Sunday, March 3, 2013 at 7 p.m. at ACL Live at The Moody Theater. A limited number of seats are available to the public.
Joe Ables, Executive Producer of the show and owner of The Saxon Pub, says, “Some of the biggest names in country music are coming together in celebration of the Lone Star state’s extraordinary music, unique history, and distinct heritage.”
Country music superstar Toby Keith, Texas Heritage Songwriters’ Association Hall of Famer Larry Gatlin and Texas-born singer and songwriter Jack Ingram will join honorees Dunn and Curtis as performers at this year’s event. Soon-to-be Honorary Texan Keith will give a special performance in honor of Miller, one of his most loved songwriters of all time.
“Roger Miller was so intelligent that many of the greats would follow him around just for inspiration, just to hear him talk. He said some of the most famous quotes ever,” said Keith. “If you want to hear cleverness, you want to hear wit, and you want to hear charm—you want to hear a ‘Class A’ songwriter, it’s Roger Miller.”
The award show will also honor the late Robin Ratliff Shivers, Founder of Health Alliance for Austin Musicians, with The Darrell K. Royal Patron Award. Each year, this award is given to an individual whose contributions to the songwriting community assist Texas songwriters in reaching their full potential. As the driving force behind her non-profit organization, Shivers helped so many Austin musicians maintain their health and wellbeing while continuing to make music.
WHEN: Sunday, March 3, 2013 at 7 p.m.
ACL Live at The Moody Theater
310 Willie Nelson Blvd.
TICKETS: Please click here to purchase your tickets.