Girls, Guitars, & Rocktail Bars

Presented By GRAMMY Museum Mississippi and The Red Carpet Guild

Join GRAMMY Museum® Mississippi and The Red Carpet Guild for the Museum's 2019 Annual Gala, "Girls, Guitars, & Rocktail Bars". The event will take place at GRAMMY Museum Mississippi on Friday, Nov. 1, at 6 p.m. and will celebrate the impact of women on music with the opening of a new temporary exhibit, Stronger Together: The Power Of Women In Country Music. The evening will feature a reception, dinner and cocktails, live music, and a silent and live auction with all proceeds going to benefit the Museum's music education initiatives.

Three-time GRAMMY® Award-winning, Mississippi-born country artist Charley Pride will also be honored as the inaugural recipient of GRAMMY Museum® Mississippi's Crossroads of American Music Award. Established by the Museum's Board of Directors, the Crossroads of American Music Award honors an artist who has made significant musical contributions influenced by the creativity born in the cradle of American music.


  • Cocktail Buffett - Exhibit-inspired bites by Elizabeth Heiskell
  • Rocktail Bars - Music city themed cocktail stations
  • Special Performance by Charley Pride
  • Live & Silent Auction
  • Live Music by Almost Famous and Southern Halo


Born as a sharecroppers' son on a cotton farm in Sledge, Miss., Charley Pride was one of country music's biggest success stories in the late '60s through the mid-'80s, and one of the first black artists to break through to major stardom in the genre. From 1966 through 1987, he accumulated over 36 No. 1 country singles and 11 gold albums in the U.S. At one point, he was second only to Elvis Presley among RCA Records' biggest-selling acts.

At 14, Pride purchased his first guitar—a Silvertone from a Sears Roebuck catalog—and taught himself how to play by listening to country music on his family's Philco radio. He subsequently turned his attention to baseball, and in 1952 played his first professional games in the Negro American League as a pitcher and outfielder for the Memphis Red Sox. Over the next several years, Pride played for many teams, including the Boise Yankees (the Class C farm team of the New York Yankees), the Louisville Clippers, and the Birmingham Black Barons. Upon rejoining the Memphis Red Sox in 1956 he won 14 games as a pitcher and earned himself a position on the Negro American League All-Star Team.


In late 1956, Pride was drafted into the U.S. Army. Upon receiving his discharge from the U.S. Army in early 1958, he rejoined the Memphis Red Sox and as an all-star player again that year pitched against many major league all-stars. In 1960, Pride moved to Montana to play for the Missoula Timberjacks, but got cut early in the season and ended up working at a smelter operated by the Anaconda Mining Company and playing for its semi-pro baseball team, the East Helena Smelterites.


While in Montana, Pride turned his attention back to music, and in 1962, with the help of Tiny Stokes, a local disc jockey, was introduced to country singers Red Foley and Red Sovine. At Red Sovine’s suggestion, Pride visited Nashville and met Jack Johnson, who had been actively searching for a promising black country singer and offered to manage him. Through Johnson, Pride met producer Jack Clement, who recorded a demo tape on him and got it over to Chet Atkins at RCA Records. Pride subsequently signed a record deal with RCA and in 1966 released his first two singles, "The Snakes Crawl At Night" and "Before I Met You." Those singles set the groundwork for "Just Between You and Me," which caught fire in 1967, breaking into the Top 10 country chart and garnering Pride his first GRAMMY nomination for Best Country & Western Vocal Performance – Male.


Between 1967 and 1987, he amassed no fewer than 52 Top 10 country hits and went on to sell tens of millions of records worldwide. In 1971, he won two GRAMMYs for his gospel album Did You Think To Pray. Later that year, his No. 1 crossover hit "Kiss An Angel Good Morning," featured on the album Charley Pride Sings Heart Songs, sold over a million singles and helped him win the Country Music Association's Entertainer of the Year award and the Top Male Vocalist awards for 1971 and 1972. It also brought him a Best Country Vocal Performance, Male GRAMMY for the album in 1972. Some of Pride's unforgettable hits from the '60s, '70s and early '80s included "All I Have To Offer You Is Me, " "Is Anybody Goin' To San Antone, " "Amazing Love, " "Mississippi Cotton Pickin' Delta Town, " "Burgers And Fries, " "Roll On Mississippi, " and "Mountain Of Love." 


In 1993, Pride was inducted into the Grand Ole Opry, 26 years after he had first played there as a guest. Many of Pride's other honors clearly underscore his impact on American music. In 1994, he was honored by the Academy Of Country Music with its prestigious Pioneer Award. In 2000, he was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame. And in 2017, the Recording Academy® honored Pride with a Lifetime Achievement Award.