The late Floyd Cramer and Carl Smith are the latest artists selected to join the Country Music Association’s (CMA) Hall of Fame. The artists will be formally inducted Nov. 5 during the 37th annual CMA Awards, which will be broadcast live on CBS from Nashville.
“I wish Floyd could be here to enjoy that, but I think somehow he’ll know,” the artist’s widow, Mary Cramer, told CMA executive director Ed Benson when he shared the news. “I was hoping this would happen one day and I was hoping it would happen during my lifetime.”
A pianist who was an in-demand session player early in his career, Cramer scored his biggest hit with “San Antonio Rose.” His rendition of the Bob Wills song reached No. 8 on Billboard’s pop singles chart in 1961. Cramer died Dec. 31, 1997, after a battle with cancer.
Smith, who racked up a string of country hits in the 1950s — including “Are You Teasing Me,” “It’s a Lovely, Lovely World” and “Loose Talk” — was a regular at the Grand Ole Opry. In the ’60s, he hosted “Carl Smith’s Country Music Hall” on Canadian television. He and his first wife, the late June Carter-Cash, are the parents of another artist, Carlene Carter. He has been married to country singer Goldie Hill since 1957.
“Well, that’s fantastic. I’m honored, I really am. I appreciate it very much,” Smith told Benson. “I was afraid I was gonna have to die first.”
CMA Hall of Fame inductees are chosen by a panel of more than 300 anonymous voters appointed by the organization’s board of directors.