A special program panel discussion called “Country Sunshine: Remembering Dottie West” will be held Saturday, March 30 at 1:30 p.m. at the Country Music Hall of Fame. Limited seating will be available.
Panelists will include former West protégé Steve Wariner, songwriter Red Lane, Grand Ole Opry star and personal friend Jeannie Seely, and West’s daughter Shelly West. They will share memories of West, her life, music and influence.
Wariner met West at the age of 17. He opened for her at the Nashville Country Club in Indianapolis. She was so impressed that she invited him to work as a bass player and backup vocalist in her touring band. He stayed with the band three years.
Lane, a songwriter, collaborated with West on the song “Country Girl.” The song reached No. 15 on the Billboard country charts and was released by West in 1968 on an album named after it.
A special spotlight exhibit at the Country Music Hall of Fame dedicated to West opened Nov. 9. Dottie West: Country Sunshine, located within the museum’s permanent exhibit on the second floor, features costumes and relics from West’s four-decade career. The exhibit runs through May 2.
“When I brought the exhibit into the museum, I mentioned to our program department about doing a panel discussion or special program about Dottie and mentioned folks like Shelly, Seely and Wariner,” said Kory Brandon of the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum. “I must say the Dottie exhibit has gone well and we have gotten very positive feedback from both the family and fans alike.”
West is not a member of the Country Music Hall of Fame. Brandon says due to the public’s reaction to the temporary exhibit, his fingers are crossed she will be inducted this year.
“In the next few weeks, the CMA should make the big announcement of this year’s 2013 Hall of Fame inductees and we are all keeping our fingers crossed that Dottie makes it in this year,” he said. “Her name was on the nominee list again this year and lots of people in the music business and fellow Hall of Fame members are pushing for it as well.”
Museum admission or a museum membership is required for program admittance. Due to limited seating, a program pass is required for a complimentary seat. Program passes are given out at the box office at the time of museum ticket purchase.
The panel discussion will be held in the Country Music Hall of Fame’s Ford Theater.