Kentucky Music Hall of Fame

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Kentucky Music
Hall of Fame

Post Office Box 85
2590 Richmond Road
Renfro Valley, Kentucky 40473


Call Toll Free:

Local:  606-256-1000
Fax:  606-256-2989


hall of fame

The Kentucky Music Hall of Fame honors Kentucky performers, songwriters, publishers, promoters, managers, broadcasters comedians and other music professionals who have made significant contributions to the music industry in Kentucky and around the world.
Twelve “Pioneers” of Kentucky music were inducted into the new Kentucky Music Hall of Fame & Museum on February 28, 2002, the Hall of Fame’s Induction Committee has announced. 

Past Inductees:
2008  / 2006 / 2004 / 2002


2011 Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony
( View Flyer )

( View Video )

The 2011 Induction Class:

Governor's Award For Lifetime Achievement
Hugh X. Lewis

For some while, Hugh X. Lewis carried on the dual carriers of performer and working in the mines. Originally this happened because his parents could not afford to pay his way while he tried for success in music. He started out be playing in weekends and days off and his first paying engagement was at a club in Cumberland, Kentucky. During the mid and late '50, Hugh became a regular member of a weekly TV show in.  Johnson City, Tennessee, and. On Saturday nights he went to Knoxville to appear on Tennessee Barn Dance. In 1959, he became foreman at the U.S. Steel mine in Lynch, Kentucky. By the 1960s, Hugh was getting a reputation with his fellow artists because of his 1963 performances on WSAZ’s Saturday Night Jamboree from Huntington and Ernest Tubb Show from Nashville. he had already started writing and now he quit his day job and over to Nashville. he did the rounds and was picked up by publisher Jim Denny, who died shortly after. Hugh got his first major cut in 1963 when Stonewall Jackson recorded B.J. The D.J. and took it to No.1. Both Kitty Wells and Carl Smith later recorded his song. By 1964, Lewis was signed to Kapp Records. He stayed with the label until 1969, during which time he chalked up 11 hits. He made his debut on the Grand Old Opry in 1964. 

Kentucky Broadcasters Association Steven Foster Award
Al Snyder

 Al Snyder began his broadcast career in 1972 working at WNVL 1250 Radio in Nicholasville, Kentucky. years later be would own that station and out WCKU FM, 102.5 on the air programming into Lexington. Because of his attention to broadcast excellence, in 1982 Al was named the Country Music Associations Broadcast Personality of the Year. That same year he was presented with a special merit award from the Kentucky

Broadcasters Association. Al was also a finalist for the same CMA Broadcast Award in 1984. In 1986 Al was elected by hi peers to serve on the Country Music Association Board of Directors. During his term on the board he traveled to London, England to help introduce the Discover New Country campaign. For 1990 to 2000 Al worked in Nashville with radio syndication companies and programs in Nashville, New York and Branson, Missouri. He has worked as producer and/or Director of Clearance for syndicated radio programs featuring Garth Brooks, Alan Jackson, Trisha Yearwood, Toby Keith, Dolly Parton and many other artists. In 2006 Al was honored with a Lifetime Membership in the Country Music Association. In addition to owning his own syndication services company; Al Snyder and Associates, he also hosts the 3 PM to 7 PM afternoon drive slot on WCYO FM, 100.7, The Coyote in Richmond, Kentucky. In addition, Al hosts Classic Request LIVE! every Friday night for 7 PM-Midnight. The show is a five hour classic country request show, which also features many of his exclusive interviews. Al and his wife Sally reside in Nicholasville, Kentucky. 

Danny R. Ford Distinguished Service Award
Warren W. Rosenthal

Warren W. Rosenthal is a native of Paducha, Kentucky, and graduate of the University of Kentucky. He is the owner of Patchen Wilkes Thoroughbred Horse Farm in Lexington, Kentucky, and is currently developing a portion of the farm in up-scale homes. Mr. Rosenthal's primary business career spanned 41 years in the foodservice and franchising industries. He joined Jerrico, Inc. in 1948, when is consisted of two, five-cent hamburgers stands called White Taverns and one, eight-stool Jerry's sandwich shop. He became chief executive officer in 1952 and president of the company 1963. From three small restaurants in 1948, he guided Jerrico, Inc. into becoming a publicly-owned company in 1969, growing to its 1989 status of over 1,500 Long John Sliver's Seafood Shoppes (in 37 states and 2 foreign countries), over 60 Jerry's Restaurants, (full-service family coffee ship restaurants) and 5 Fazoli's, (fast-food Italian restaurants), all of which he originated. He retired as a chairman of the board of Jerrico, Inc. in 1989 when the company was the object of a takeover. Bored after 32 days of retirement, Mr. Rosenthal joined Ralph Gabbard of Lexington and Glenn Pennington of Berea in the ownership of Renfro

Valley Entertainment Center, the home of the Renfro Valley Barn Dance, a country music venue. As the surviving partner, he ultimately donated Renfro Valley Entertainment Center to the Kentucky Music Hall of Fame and Museum in July of 2000.


The 2008 Induction Class:

1)  Les McCann

2)  Crystal Gayle

3)  Florence Henderson

4)  Norro Wilson

5)  Dwight Yoakam

2008 Dany Ford Service Award

Governor Paul Patton-Born at home in Fallsburg, Kentucky, on May 26, 1937, Paul Patton was one of three children of Ward and Irene Patton. Both parents worked to support the family and save for the children's education. Paul graduated from Louisa High School in Lawrence County in 1955, and went onto the University of Kentucky where he worked in the campus cafeteria. After graduation, literally working from ground up, Paul Patton spent the next 20 years building a successful coal business. He then turned his attention to public service and began a new career as Deputy State Transportation Secretary in the administration of Governor John Y. Brown, Jr. in 1979. In 1982, Patton ran for public office and was elected Pike County Judge-Executive.
    He won reelection, but in 1991, Patton returned to Frankfort as Lt. Governor-the forst to serve as an appointed cabinet secretary heading up the Economic Development Cabinet. Patton made history by writing a jobs program that put tens of thousands of Kentuckians to work by allowing the state to attract new industries and help existing companies to expand. He is credited with rescuing nine thousand jobs at Louisville's General Electric Appliance Park through his jobs program.

Kentucky's Broadcasters Association
Steven Foster Award

Wallace "Pete" Stamper- The Kentucky Broadcasters Association presents awards to those individuals who have made oustanding contributions and who have earned fame or acclaim in their field of endeavor, in recognition of the value of those achievements to the state.
    Pete Stamper has been the single most identifiable voice at WRVK 1460 Radio in Mt. Vernon, Kentucky. he began his professional entertainment career in Renfro Valley in 1952. Two years later, Red Foley offered Pete the feature comedy spot on his Ozark Jubilee, America's first Country Music Neetwork (ABC) television show. He appeared on the Grand Ole Opry and in 1975, Dolly Parton asked him to travel with her as comedian and road manager.
    Pete is a songwriter whose songs have been recorded by Red Foley, Porter Wagoner, Susan Tomes Laws, Dale Ann Bradley, Bill Anderson and others. he also helped produce the second oldest continuous radio broadcast in the nation, the "Sunday, Renfro Valley Gatherin" for 39 years. Pete's book, It All Happened In Renfro Valley, was written and released in 1999. Pete and his wife, Minnie Lee, reside in Renfro Valley, Kentucky.

Governor's Award for Lifetime Achievement

Homer Ledford-Homer Ledford was born and raised in the Tennessee Mountains, a part of the Appalachian chain. At an early age, he began making musical instruments, his first being a "match stick" fiddle. At the age of eighteen, he was given a rehabilitation scholarship to attend the John C. Campbell Folk School, in Brasstown, North Carolina. There, while recuperating from rheumatioc fever, he made his first dulcimer.
    Mr. Ledford attended Berea College in 1949 and transferred to Eastern Kentucky University where he received a B.S. degree in 1954. Teaching industrial arts for ten years, he resigned in 1963 to become a full time instrument maker. Mr. Ledford's craft is represented in the Smithsonian Institute and registered in the U.S. Patent Office.
    Mr. Ledford was a fine Bluegrass musician who played 13 different instruments and organized the Homer Ledford and the Cabin Crekk Band in 1976. Homer was honored by his hometown of Winchester, Kentucky in 1986 when they named a Bluegrass Festival after him.


The 2006 Induction Class:

1)  John Conlee

2)  Sam Bush

3)  Wynonna & Noami Judd

4)  John Jacob Niles

5)  Todd Duncan

6)  Mary Travers

7)  Dottie Rambo

8)  Lionel Hampton


The 2004 Induction Class:

1)  The Coon Creek Girls

2)  Billy Vaughn

3)  J.D. Crowe

4)  Vestal and Howard Goodman

5)  Jerry Chesnut

6)  Boots Randolph

7)  Ricky Skaggs


The 2002 Induction Class:

1)  Rosemary Clooney ( Open / Variety )

2)  Everly Brothers ( Open / Rock-n-Roll )

3)  Red Foley ( Country )*

4)  Tom T. Hall ( Country / Bluegrass )

5)  Grandpa Jones ( Open / Comedy )*

6)  Bradley Kincaid ( Country / Bluegrass )

7)  John Lair ( Country / Bluegrass & Open Non-Performer )

8)  Loretta Lynn ( Country )*

9)  Bill Monroe ( Bluegrass )*

10)  The Osborne Brothers ( Bluegrass )

11)  Jean Ritchie ( Folk )

12)  Merle Travis ( Country )*

  • Lionel Hampton (1908-2002) Louisville, KY. Recipient of the Governor's Lifetime Achievement Award. Undisputed King of the Vibraphone for well over half the century. Hampton formed his own big band in the early 1940s with hit records such as: “Sunny Side of the Street,”  “Central Avenue Breakdown,” “Flying Home,” and “Hamp’s Boogie-Woogie.” In addition to his still popular and often performed compositions Midnight Sun, King David Suite, and Blues Suite, Hampton received many coveted awards and honors such as; the Official American Goodwill Ambassador, seventeen Honorary Doctorates, the Gold Medal of Paris, Kennedy Center Honors Award and National Medal of the Arts from the White House in 1997.
  • H. Russell Farmer – Recipient of The Kentucky Broadcaster’s Association “Stephen Foster Award”. Farmer is a producer/director at KET who has been largely responsible for creating and producing much of KET’s music programming for 27 years. Farmer is responsible for the production of such programs as: “Lonesome Pine Specials,” “Tour of Kentucky Folk Music,” “Kentucky Bluegrass,” the prestigious “In Performance at the Governor’s Mansion” series as well as the Emmy Award winning “An Evening with Richard Davis and Friends” (jazz) and “Ladies of Note.”

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