NASHVILLE, Tenn. – ‘Miss Country Soul’ Jeannie Seely celebrates 50 years as a member of the Grand Ole Opry. Exactly 50 years to the day she was first inducted on September 16, 1967, Seely performed her Grammy®-winning classic “Don’t Touch Me” and other favorites before being joined on stage by fellow Opry member Bill Anderson and Opry General Manager Sally Williams to mark the occasion with gifts and presentations. Seely becomes the sixth woman in country music history to reach the milestone, joining Minnie Pearl, Jean Shepard, Wilma Lee Cooper, Loretta Lynn and Connie Smith with that distinction.
“Jeannie Seely lives and breathes the Grand Ole Opry,” Williams said. “It is an honor for all of us to celebrate such a talented, dedicated, trailblazing member of our Opry family. Watching her perform tonight, I think we can all agree she’s just getting started.”
“The Opry has been my life for more than 50 years,” said Seely. “I feel so blessed to be a part of this Opry family, tonight was just the icing on the cake.”
The Pennsylvania-native first saw success with her hit single, “Don’t Touch Me,” which won a Grammy Award for “Best Country Vocal Performance by a Female” in 1966. Along with dozens of accolades, including awards from Billboard, Cashbox and Record World, Seely has achieved No. 1 songs as a solo artist, as a duet partner and as a songwriter. Her songs have been recorded by country legends such as Merle Haggard, Dottie West, Ernest Tubb and Ray Price.
Most recently Seely released ‘Written In Song,’ a collection of 14 tracks all co-written or self penned by Seely. Distributed by Smith Music Group, ‘Written In Song’ brings back the traditional country sound that fans have been longing for. Standout tracks include “Leavin’ & Sayin’ Goodbye” featuring special guests Kenny and Tess Sears, “Senses” with guest Connie Smith and Marty Stuart and “We’re Still Hangin’ In There Ain’t We Jessi” with Jan Howard and Jessi Colter.
ABOUT JEANNIE SEELY:
“Miss Country Soul” Jeannie Seely is a GRAMMY® award-winning artist who has been recording and performing for more than six decades. A Pennsylvania native, Seely moved to LA where she met many songwriters including Dottie West who ultimately encouraged her to move to Nashville. Within a month, Porter Wagoner hired her as the female singer for his road and television series. On September 16, 1967, Seely’s biggest dream came true when she became the first Pennsylvania native to become a member of the world famous Grand Ole Opry. Seely subsequently became the first female to regularly host segments of the weekly Opry shows. She’s also credited for changing the image of female country performers by being the first to wear a mini-skirt on the Opry stage. On March 2, 1967, the National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences honored Jeannie with the 1966 GRAMMY® Award for the “Best Country Vocal Performance by a Female.” A BMI-awarded songwriter, Seely’s songs have been recorded by Country Music Hall of Fame members Faron Young, Merle Haggard, Connie Smith, Ray Price, Willie Nelson, Ernest Tubb and Little Jimmy Dickens, as well as by many other artists including Doyle Lawson, Lorrie Morgan and Irma Thomas. Along with placing records on the Billboard country singles chart for 13 consecutive years, Seely also served as a radio disc jockey on her own Armed Forces Network Show. For more information, visit jeannieseely.com.