Hip Hop News

Celebrating Black Excellence in Country Music: From Where I Stand Box Set Expanded and Reimagined

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The Country Music Hall of Fame® and Museum, in a groundbreaking collaboration with Warner Music Nashville, is poised to unveil an expanded edition of the iconic box set “From Where I Stand: The Black Experience in Country Music.” Scheduled for release on May 31, this comprehensive collection represents a significant milestone in the recognition of Black artists’ contributions to the genre.

Originally introduced in 1998, the box set was a joint effort between the museum and Warner Music Nashville, inspired by the visionary perspectives of Black country recording artist Cleve Francis and American Baptist College executive Nelson Wilson. Their recognition of a historical oversight sparked a journey to unearth and honor the rich legacy of Black musicians within country music.

The updated edition features 82 tracks across four discs, with a new addition titled “Reclaiming the Heritage,” spotlighting contemporary Black artists who have emerged in the genre up to 2020. The inclusion of artists like Rhiannon Giddens, Darius Rucker, Miko Marks, and Mickey Guyton underscores the ongoing vibrancy and relevance of Black voices within country music.

In a statement, Rhiannon Giddens shared her perspective on the Black country renaissance, emphasizing its role in amplifying cultural narratives that have traditionally been marginalized. “Their music reflects and highlights a cultural viewpoint that has been traditionally suppressed, shows the best of the American narrative, and, in the end, tells the important stories of now, for the generations of tomorrow,” said Giddens.

The packaging of the CD set is a testament to the project’s commitment to honoring tradition, featuring traditional quilt designs from the Gee’s Bend community of Alabama. Each quilt corresponds to the era of music represented in the collection, adding a visual layer of storytelling to the listening experience.

Accompanying the release is an immersive online experience accessible via the museum’s website. This free resource offers a wealth of educational material, archival photographs, and historical track notes for each selection. Additionally, music that couldn’t be licensed for the physical release, including collaborations like Beyoncé and the Chicks’ “Daddy Lessons” and Lil Nas X’s “Old Town Road,” will be available online.

To celebrate the release, a special concert event titled “From Where I Stand: The Concert Celebration” will take place on June 18 at the museum’s CMA Theater. Featuring performances by artists represented in the box set, including Blanco Brown, Wendy Moten, and The War And Treaty, the concert promises to be a poignant celebration of Black excellence in country music.


The expanded release of “From Where I Stand” marks a significant moment in the ongoing journey to recognize and celebrate the diversity of voices within country music. By amplifying the contributions of Black artists, this project not only honors the past but also paves the way for a more inclusive future in the genre. As we embrace this rich tapestry of musical heritage, let us continue to uplift and champion the voices that have too long been silenced or overlooked.

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