Maybe Alan Jackson’s CMT Impact Award is in some kind of trophy room. Or in a glass display case with recessed lighting. Or maybe it’s still in a box waiting to join his other accolades. But I know one thing for sure — he reveres all of his awards enough to take very good care of them.
Last week, during all the blessed CMT Music Awards and CMA Fest chaos, Jackson held a press conference about his upcoming 25th anniversary tour. And he took the time to tell reporters at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum about the first time he saw an actual award up close.
“I remember writing on Music Row down there, and we wrote in a bunch of old houses back then with little songwriting rooms,” Jackson said. “We were upstairs in this attic room, and the door was propped open with this music award. And I went over there and looked at it, and it was one of Kris Kristofferson’s awards. And I thought that was so cool.
“But I also thought, ’If I ever win an award, I’m not gonna leave it somewhere propping open a door,'” he said with a laugh.
That memory has stayed with Jackson all these years and is why he’s been holding on tight to all of his awards and memorabilia.
“I’ve got so many awards, it’s just embarrassing. CMAs, ACMs, awards from radio stations and keys to cities,” he said as modestly as a guy with that much trophy accumulation can. He’ll be able to display many of those awards when an exhibit about his life opens at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum on Aug. 29.
And he made sure the crowd of industry people and fan club members knew his success had come from very humble beginnings.
“People don’t realize how we had nothing,” Jackson said. “And I didn’t know anything about music. Somebody said, ’You sound like some of those guys on the radio. Why don’t you move to Nashville?’ And I said, ’OK.’ That’s basically what happened.”