Chris Janson Gives Tearful Speech as Garth Brooks Inducts Him Into the Grand Ole Opry [Watch]
Chris Janson became the newest member of the Grand Ole Opry at a ceremony in Nashville on Tuesday night (March 20). Country superstar Garth Brooks was on hand for the special occasion to induct the "Drunk Girl" singer.
"Driving in here tonight, I passed a billboard that says ‘Welcome to the Family,'" Brooks shared. "Family is a great name for this place. Another great name for this place is church. That’s what it’s all about. Because if any time you are at your lowest, these people are going to be here for you. And they’ll expect the same out of you, and they’ll get the same out of you."
As he handed Janson his Opry membership award, Brooks proclaimed, "Chris, it is my honor to welcome you to the family. This will be — no matter how many times you look back on it — the greatest night of your music career."
Chris Janson Plays Last Question!
Janson was visibly emotional as he made his remarks to the crowd.
"How do you not cry on a night like this?" he asked rhetorically before thanking his wife and kids, who joined him onstage for his induction. "To know me is to know I really, truly love the Grand Ole Opry."
"This will be a moment I will never forget," he added. "Thanks for making my dreams come true, and thanks for buying a ticket to the Opry to see it happen! I hope you come back a million times! I’ll buy the ticket for ya. I don’t even care. I love you that much!"
Janson's good friend, Opry member Keith Urban, surprised the singer live onstage with the invitation to join the Opry during his sold-out show at the Ryman Auditorium on Feb. 5, right after joining him for a cover of John Michael Montgomery's “Sold."
Janson — who was previously best-known known as a hit songwriter for Tim McGraw and more — scored one of the biggest breakthroughs in country music in recent years with "Buy Me a Boat." He followed that hit up with "Fix a Drink" and his current single, "Drunk Girl." Janson's songwriting skills and exuberant live gigs have earned commercial success and respect from peers within the country music industry.
"Chris Janson showed us all again tonight why we are so excited to welcome him into the Opry family," Opry General Manager Sally Williams said at his induction. "Like he has during every Opry appearance he’s made, he exuded passion and enthusiasm for this iconic show he loves so much. Whether he’s playing his own hits, songs he’s written for fellow artists, or his all-time country favorites, he brings Opry audiences to their feet with his performances."
"Backstage, it’s amazing to watch him connect with both the artists who have come before him and those who are following in his footsteps," she added. "We could not be more thrilled about the excitement, loyalty, and great music he will bring to our Opry family for years to come."