On a chilly winter night, scores of people from the Nashville music industry found warmth inside the BMI
offices on Music Row. The warmth came not from the shelter of the building, but from their shared adoration of an American
television icon -- Andy Griffith.
The reception honored the 76-year-old actor for his support of country music and
the Nashville music community, but it was abundantly clear that the event really honored Griffith for his work as a sheriff
(on The Andy Griffith Show) and attorney (on the Matlock series). With Marty
Stuart serving as master of ceremonies during the reception, Griffith received special plaques from several dignitaries,
including Nashville Mayor Bill Purcell and Davidson County Sheriff Daron Hall.
The Jan. 15 reception coincided with
Griffith's visit to a Nashville recording studio where sessions took place for his upcoming Christmas album. At Stuart's request,
Griffith shared a holiday story that will be included as a recitation on the album. Stuart is producing the project that is
scheduled for release later this year.