In a groundbreaking moment that will forever be etched in the legacy of the Grand Ole Opry, Tanya Tucker took the stage on horseback, becoming the first artist to do so in the iconic venue’s 97-year history. A master of grand entrances, Tucker captivated the audience as she rode atop the magnificent black Friesian stallion named Lauwe while delivering her opening song, “Kindness.”
This unprecedented event marked a significant milestone, breaking the century-long tradition of the Opry broadcasts. To bring this extraordinary moment to life, Tucker collaborated closely with the Opry team, including executive producer Dan Rogers, as well as the stallion’s owner, Annika Bruggeworth.
The sight of Tucker gracefully riding through the streets of Nashville on the same horse had already captured the public’s attention back in April 2023. This ride celebrated her induction into the esteemed Country Music Hall of Fame and her highly anticipated headlining shows at the Ryman Auditorium on June 3 and 4. Horses have always held a special place in Tucker’s heart, a passion evident even on the cover of her album “Sweet Western Sound” and her Grammy-winning 2019 release, “While I’m Livin’,” featuring the heartfelt hit “Bring My Flowers Now.”
Kicking off her performance with “Kindness,” a track from her 26th album, Tucker continued to captivate the crowd with more songs from the release, including “When the Rodeo Is Over” and “The List.” She also treated the audience to timeless classics such as “Delta Dawn,” “Two Sparrows in a Hurricane,” “Texas (When I Die),” and “Strong Enough to Bend,” featuring special guests Pam Tillis and the acclaimed bluegrass duo Dailey & Vincent.
April 3 brought another remarkable achievement for Tucker as she was announced as one of the 2023 inductees into the Country Music Hall of Fame, alongside Patty Loveless and songwriter Bob McDill. The official induction ceremony is scheduled for the fall of 2023, promising to be a momentous occasion.
In 2022, Tucker was the subject of the captivating documentary, “The Return of Tanya Tucker (Featuring Brandi Carlile).” She also released the poignant ballad “Ready As I’ll Never Be,” a collaborative effort with Carlile that beautifully reflects on passing the torch to the next generation of country music. When asked about her enduring success, Tucker humbly responded, “I won’t go away, so you’ll just have to put up with me.”
Tanya Tucker’s extraordinary performance on horseback at the Grand Ole Opry will forever remain a testament to her trailblazing spirit and indelible mark on the world of country music.