Located in Kannapolis, North Carolina, the North Carolina Music Hall of Fame is a nonprofit museum honoring notable musicians with ties to the North Carolina region through an annual induction ceremony and a variety of museum exhibits and artifacts.
The North Carolina Music Hall of Fame was the vision of Joe Carroll and Doug Croft, who founded a nonprofit organization in 1994 to honor outstanding musicians, composers, and artists with ties to the greater North Carolina region. The first Hall of Fame induction ceremony, which honored seven artists, by the organization was held in 1999 in Thomasville, and a second ceremony followed in 2002, adding two more artists. Induction ceremonies were put on hold from 2002 through 2008 as the organization underwent a search for a permanent museum facility to house memorabilia and artifacts connected to inductees. A historic former city jail building in nearby Kannapolis was chosen as the museum’s location in 2008, and after seven months of renovation, the new museum facility was opened to the public in 2009. Induction ceremonies for the Hall of Fame resumed in October of 2009. In 2014, the museum was relocated to the former Curb Museum for Music and Motorsports facility, which transferred its operations to Charlotte’s NASCAR Hall of Fame.
Permanent Exhibits and Inductees
Today, the North Carolina Music Hall of Fame is operated as a nonprofit organization and museum facility honoring exemplary musicians, composers, and music industry figures with ties to the greater North Carolina region. Inductees are chosen across all genres of contemporary music and include performers, producers, songwriters, and music executives. A wide variety of artifacts and memorabilia connected to past Hall of Fame inductees is presented at the museum, with all exhibits detailing their connection to the lives and careers of the inductees they represent. A QR code is attached to all museum exhibits, allowing visitors to use their smartphones or tablets to learn more information about each inductee’s life, career, and contributions to the arts and culture of the North Carolina region. Video interviews and concert performances by each artist may also be viewed by scanning QR codes.
Notable past inductees into the Hall of Fame include 1999 inductee Charlie Daniels, best known as the lead singer of the Charlie Daniels Band. Throughout the 1970s, Daniels recorded a number of hit country songs, including the 1979 Grammy Award-winning song “The Devil Went Down to Georgia,” which became a platinum-selling single. Ben E. King, best known as the lead vocalist of The Drifters, was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2009, along with folk rock singer James Taylor, known for his hit singles “You’ve Got A Friend,” “Shower the People,” and “How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved By You).” Other 2009 inductees include legendary avant-garde jazz musician John Coltrane, whose work throughout the 1960s is credited as the foundation of modern jazz music, iconic African-American female vocalists Nina Simone and Roberta Flack, and Grammy Award-winning country musician Randy Travis.
2010 inductees to the Hall of Fame included actor, entertainer, and musician Andy Griffith, best known as the star of the hit 1960s television series “The Andy Griffith Show” and “Make Room For Daddy.” In 2011, Ben Folds was inducted into the Hall of Fame, best known as the lead singer of alternative rock band Ben Folds Five. 2014 inductees included Fantasia and Clay Aiken, two popular American Idol contestants with ties to the North Carolina region. In 2016, folk rock musicians The Avett Brothers were honored, and in 2017, legendary blues guitarist and singer Etta Baker, a recipient of the North Carolina Folk Heritage Award and the National Heritage Fellowship, was inducted posthumously. 2018 inductees included pianist and composer John Tesh, American Idol contestant Chris Daughtry, Ramseur Records founder Dolphus Ramseur, GMA Gospel Music Hall of Fame members The Hoppers, blues guitarist Blind Boy Fuller, and Grammy-nominated singers Luther Barnes and Calvin Richardson.
Ongoing Programs and Events
In addition to standard visitor admission, the North Carolina Music Hall of Fame offers after-hours and weekend tours for small groups and organizations, including curriculum-incorporated field trip opportunities for elementary and secondary school students. Each year, the Hall of Fame’s induction ceremony is held in October, honoring a number of new inductees with ties to the North Carolina region. The 2018 induction ceremony will honor seven new inductees as part of the Hall of Fame’s 10th annual ceremonies. The museum may also be rented for private special events, with catering and audiovisual services available upon request for an additional reservation fee. Office and conference space may also be rented for business events and meetings.
600 Dale Earnhardt Blvd, Kannapolis, NC, 28081, Phone: 704-934-2320