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Taking Names: Emotional Garth Brooks inducted into hall of fame
Question of the Day
Garth Brooks promised he’d be emotional during his Country Music Hall of Fame induction. But the tears started before he made it all the way into the building.
Reflecting on personal heroes George Strait, Bob Seger and James Taylor, who were on hand to salute him Sunday night, Mr. Brooks teared up as he spoke with reporters on the red carpet. He only got more emotional as the night went along.
“I moved to this town for one reason and that was to get ‘Much Too Young to Feel This Damn Old’ cut by George Strait,” Mr. Brooks said before the ceremony as his eyes began to redden. “That’s what George is singing tonight. It’s gonna be so cool. I’m a fan. So I get to be a fan tonight.”
It was a night studded with stars. Mr. Strait, Mr. Seeger and Mr. Taylor played for Mr. Brooks, dubbed “the mighty Garth” by Mr. Robbins. Lee Ann Womack, the Quebe Sisters and the Whites saluted Miss Smith. Merle Haggard provided her induction speech.
Ronnie Dunn serenaded Mr. Robbins with a version of George Jones’ “White Lightning,” the first No. 1 hit Mr. Robbins played on in 1959, while simultaneously drinking moonshine from a Mason jar. Ronnie Milsap, who like Mr. Robbins is blind, joked “Pig and I are driving home tonight,” before joining Mr. Robbins on “Behind Closed Doors.”
Mr. Brooks gave a speech that included thanks to friends, family and industry professionals who helped him along the way. And he told the story of how Mr. Taylor, Mr. Seeger and Mr. Strait affected him at the points they entered his life. He remembered hearing Mr. Strait for the first time while visiting home after his freshman year in college.
“Unwound” came on the radio and it changed everything.
“From that point forward I knew what I wanted to do with the rest of my life,” Mr. Brooks said. “I wanted to be George Strait so bad, man. And I have to say now, 20 years in the business under my own name, thank you very much, I still want to be George Strait so damn bad.”
American Indian activist, actor Russell Means dies
Russell Means, a former American Indian Movement activist who helped lead the 1973 uprising at Wounded Knee, reveled in stirring up attention and appeared in several Hollywood films, has died. He was 72.
Mr. Means died early Monday at his ranch in Porcupine, S.D., Oglala Sioux Tribe spokeswoman Donna Salomon said.
Mr. Means, a Wanblee native who grew up in the San Francisco area, announced in August 2011 that he had developed inoperable throat cancer. He told The Associated Press he was forgoing mainstream medical treatments in favor of traditional American Indian remedies and alternative treatments away from his home on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation.
Mr. Means was an early leader of AIM and led its armed occupation of the South Dakota town of Wounded Knee, a 71-day siege that included several gun battles with federal officers. He often was embroiled in controversy, partly because of AIM’s alleged involvement in the 1975 slaying of Annie Mae Aquash. But Mr. Means also was known for his role in the movie “The Last of the Mohicans” and had run unsuccessfully for the Libertarian nomination for president in 1988.
By Matt Kibbe
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