The Gospel Music Association just announced their nominations for the upcoming 47th Annual Dove Awards, and Country Music Hall of Fame member Jimmy Fortune was nominated in three categories. All nods came as a result of Fortune’s critically-acclaimed album Hits & Hymns, released in 2015. The project features some of Fortune’s closest friends, including Vince Gill, The Oak Ridge Boys, The Isaacs, Dailey & Vincent, Ricky Skaggs and more.
The Statler Brothers member picked up one nomination for “Bluegrass Recorded Song of the Year” for the track “Life’s Railway to Heaven,” which features The Oak Ridge Boys. The next nomination came in the “Country Recorded Song of the Year” category for the inspirational song, “I Believe,” featuring The Whites. Lastly, Hits & Hymns was nominated in the “Bluegrass/Country Album of the Year” category.
The 47th Annual GMA Dove Awards will take place in Nashville, Tenn. at Lipscomb University’s Allen Arena on Oct. 11. The ceremony will be taped and air on Oct. 16 on Trinity Broadcasting Network (TBN).
Jimmy Fortune toured, sang and performed with the legendary Statler Brothers for 21 years. He joined them first as a temporary replacement for Lew DeWitt, after DeWitt heard him singing at a ski resort and recommended him. Following an audition in Nashville, Jimmy was contacted by The Statler Brothers and performed his first show with them on January 28, 1982, in Savannah, Georgia. Due to the debilitating effects of Crohn’s Disease, Lew was unable to return to the stage with the Statlers, and Jimmy was hired as a permanent replacement in August of 1982.
Fortune quickly lived up to his name. He wrote the group’s second No. 1 hit, “Elizabeth,” on their 1983 album Today, and followed that with two more No. 1 hits–“My Only Love” (from 1984’s Atlanta Blue) and “Too Much On My Heart” (from 1985’s Pardners in Rhyme). Fortune also wrote the top-10 hit “Forever” from 1986’s Four for the Show and co-wrote the top-10 hit “More Than a Name on a Wall” from 1988’s The Greatest Hits.
Jimmy and The Statler Brothers were inducted into the GMA (Gospel Music Association) Hall of Fame on October 29, 2007, and inducted into the CMA (Country Music Association) Hall of Fame on June 29, 2008.
After The Statler Brothers retired on October 26, 2002, Jimmy seized the opportunity to launch a solo career to share new music with his fans. His first solo CD, When One Door Closes, was released August 2003 on Audium/Koch. He released a gospel album, I Believe, in June 2005, a Christmas CD, Feels Like Christmas, in 2006, a live concert DVD in 2007 a country CD, “Windows” in 2009, “Lessons” in 2012, and “Hits and Hymns” CD and DVD through Gaither Music Group in 2015. The DVD debuted at #1 on Billboard. Jimmy is currently living in Nashville, writing, and touring.