“For me, it means that I’m a better man than I would have been had I not been a member of the Grand Ole Opry because I take it very seriously… And I try to conduct myself every day, keeping in mind that I’m a member of the Grand Ole Opry,” Adkins said from the sacred stage. “I represent this institution, and I don’t want to do anything that might disrespect my family at the Grand Ole Opry.
“It probably kept me out of jail more times than I would have gone,” he added with a laugh.
It was Little Jimmy Dickens who invited Adkins to become an Opry member in 2003, standing on a stepladder so he and Adkins could be eye-to-eye. Adkins was inducted into the Grand Ole Opry by his own musical hero, Ronnie Milsap.
The Louisiana native has accomplished plenty in his diverse career, including hit singles, sold-out tours, blockbuster films and more. But for him, being an official member of the Grand Ole Opry will always be one of his biggest successes.
“It still is just as, if not more, important than it ever was,” Adkins previously told Everything Nash. “I love it. People ask me if I look back on my career, what’s at the top of my list of achievements? Being a member of the Grand Ole Opry is in the top five spots. And it’s weird because I didn’t do anything to deserve that. It wasn’t something that I achieved. It was just something that, for some reason, somebody bestowed this honor onto me. I didn’t do anything to really deserve it, but I’m so grateful and thankful.
“I now always keep that in mind, no matter what I’m doing or where I’m going, that I am a member of the Grand Ole Opry,” he added. “I’m a representative of that institution and that helps me to conduct myself appropriately.”
Adkins recently released the video for “Somewhere in America,” which pays tribute to the victims of the tragic tornado that tore through Mayfield, Kentucky in 2021.
“It seems like over the last couple years we could have picked a lot of places,” Adkins told CMT’s Cody Alan. “I think Mayfield is representative of all those communities that have had to come together in light of these terrible storms. We just wanted to come in here and give them a pat on the back and say, ‘There are people out there that haven’t forgotten about you.’ That’s what I was hoping to do.”
Photo Credits: Courtesy of the Grand Ole Opry/Chris Hollo