Jon Pardi got quite the surprise during his performance at Stagecoach on Friday night (April 28): an official invitation to become the newest member of the Grand Ole Opry, via a video invite from Alan Jackson.
While Pardi was on stage at the Indio, California, festival, friend and restauranteur Guy Fieri appeared to point the country star’s attention toward Jackson’s video.
“I’ve been appreciating your music ever since you were touring with me a few years ago. So I get the honor to invite you in front of all your Stagecoach friends out there to be the first native of California to become an official member of the Grand Ole Opry,” Jackson said, guitar in hand.
Meanwhile, on the stage, Opry executive producer Dan Rogers set up the Opry mic stand in front of Pardi.
“That mic stand represents the future of country music as well as its incredible history,” Rogers told the crowd. “This night will go down in history, too, both because Jon is the first artist invited to join the Opry on this stage and because he’s the first native Californian to get that call. What a great night!”
Pardi’s induction date has not yet been announced.
“I moved to Nashville chasing a dream at 22 years old and now I’m here. I love you guys and I love country music. Thank you, everybody. This is an amazing night. I’ll never forget it,” an emotional Pardi said upon hearing the news.
Later in the night Pardi added, “I always wondered how this might happen if it was going to. I never imagined anything this great. That was incredible.”
Backstage, Rogers made another statement in support of Pardi: “For nearly a decade now, Jon Pardi has been adding something great to the show every single time he plays the Opry,” he noted. “For me personally, I’ll never forget the big sounds he brought to the Opry stage during the pandemic and the way he connected with audiences around the world via our livestream even when he was playing to an empty Opry House. I have no doubt there are good times ahead for all of us with Jon as a future Opry member.”
Pardi recently received his third nomination for album of the year at the upcoming ACM Awards. He also announced his Mr. Saturday Night World Tour, kicking off in August. See all of his upcoming dates here.