Brenda Lee, the Oak Ridge Boys and the late Conway Twitty and Porter Wagoner have been named as this year's recipients of the Academy of Country Music's Cliffie Stone Pioneer Award. Additionally, Dick Clark will receive the ACM's Jim Reeves International Award, and Bill Anderson and the late Fred Rose will become the first recipients of the organization's newest honor, the Poet's Award.
The awards were announced Wednesday (May 7) along with awards recognizing musicians and those working in the radio and touring industries.
The Cliffie Stone Pioneer Award honors individuals who have been at the forefront in the development of the country music genre. Past recipients include Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, Bob Wills, Tex Ritter, Charley Pride, Loretta Lynn, Charlie Daniels, Hank Williams Sr., Merle Haggard, George Jones, Dolly Parton and Alabama.
The Jim Reeves International Award is presented to an individual for outstanding contributions to the acceptance of country music throughout the world. Previous recipients include Buck Owens, Roy Clark, Garth Brooks, Charlie Nagatani and Merv Griffin. Dick Clark, who hosted the ACM Awards show four times in the late '60s and early '70s, has produced the televised program since 1979. He offered television exposure to country artists on several other shows including American Bandstand, New Year's Rockin' Eve and the American Music Awards.
The Poet's Award honors songwriters for outstanding musical and lyrical contributions to country music. Anderson, who won his first ACM award in 2007 for co-writing George Strait's "Give It Away," has had his songs recorded by Ray Price, Vince Gill, Kenny Chesney, Brad Paisley and many others. Rose and country star Roy Acuff co-founded Acuff-Rose Publications, Nashville's first music publisher, and worked closely with Hank Williams Sr. Rose enjoyed a string of pop hits during the 1920s before finding success with Western songs popularized by Tex Ritter, Gene Autry, the Sons of the Pioneers and others. His most famous song, "Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain," was a hit for Willie Nelson in 1975.
The ACM will present the Cliffie Stone Pioneer Award, Jim Reeves International Award and Poet's Award -- along with its musicians awards -- in Nashville later this year. The industry and radio awards will be presented in Las Vegas on May 17, the day before the 43rd annual ACM Awards show.
MBI (Musician, Band Instrumental) Awards
Guitarist: Dann Huff
Piano-keyboard player: Matt Rollings
Bass player: Michael Rhodes
Percussionist-drummer: Shannon Forrest
Steel guitarist: Paul Franklin
Fiddle player: Stuart Duncan
Top specialty instrument player: Jerry Douglas
Audio engineer: Justin Niebank
Producer: Mark Wright
Nightclub: Billy Bob's (Fort Worth, Texas)
Casino: Mohegan Sun Arena (Uncasville, Conn.)
Don Romeo Talent Buyer: Gil Cunningham (Neste Event Marketing)
Promoter: Brian O'Connell (Live Nation)
Venue: Nissan Pavilion (Bristow, Va.)
National on-air personality: The Big D and Bubba Show and The Lia Show
On-air personality (major market): Gerry House & the House Foundation (WSIX/Nashville)
On-air personality (medium market): Valleri St. John (WWGR/Fort Myers, Fla.)
On-air personality (small market): Gator & the Styckman (WGSQ/Cookeville, Tenn.)
Radio station (major market): WMIL/Milwaukee, Wis.
Radio station (medium market): WUSY/Chattanooga, Tenn.
Radio station (small market): WGSQ/Cookeville, Tenn.