Country stars Keith Urban and Vince Gill have helped induct their pal Darius Rucker into the Grand Ole Opry during a special ceremony in Tennessee.
Rucker took to the iconic venue’s stage in Nashville on Tuesday night to perform for fans and family as the institution’s newest member, and Urban and Gill helped make the evening extra special by showing up to support their friend.
Stepping up to the podium to deliver a rousing speech, Gill told Rucker: "I don’t think there is a more beloved guy in our music than you. You will find this place right here to be one of the greatest homes you’ll ever have."
A handful of other artists unable to attend the event filmed congratulatory video messages for the 46-year-old former Hootie & the Blowfish frontman, including Jason Aldean, Brad Paisley, Ricky Skaggs and Rascal Flatts, and Rucker felt blessed by the tremendous honour.
"I was sitting here in rehearsals today and there was nobody in here and I looked up in the stands and I thought to myself, ‘somewhere in those stands my mum is looking at me’ and it just blew me away," Rucker told the crowd.
"This is a labour of love for me. I love country music. Thank you so much for letting me into your world."
Here’s a video of Brad Paisley inviting Rucker to become a member of the Opry.