The legacy account of Charley Pride has informed that the Ryman Auditorium unveiled the latest addition to its Icon Walk on April 12, 2023, with a statue honouring Charley Pride. The detailed bronze likeness of Charley playing his signature 1960s Fender Coronado Antigua II guitar was added to the permanent outdoor exhibition on the historic venue’s grounds ensuring that Charley will forever remain part of the soul of Nashville.
Created as a way to honour those who have made significant contributions to the historic venue and Music City, Charley’s statue joins the Icon Walk’s previously revealed likenesses of Loretta Lynn, Little Jimmy Dickens, and Bill Monroe, three other legends of country and bluegrass music.
The Ryman team once again collaborated with artist Ben Watts (the talent behind the previous three statues) for the tribute to Pride, which took a year to create.
Located at the northwest corner of the Ryman Auditorium building near the venue’s driveway on Fifth Avenue, visitors can find Pride standing next to the likenesses of Loretta Lynn and Bill Monroe.
Pride’s wife of over 60 years, Rozene Pride and his son Dion Pride were in attendance for the unveiling, with both making remarks and relating stories.
While addressing the large group of fans in attendance, Dion stated, “He was totally devoted towards his fans – in fact, his fans drove him. All of you drove him. You all are responsible for his successful career. Everything he did was for you.”
One of the fans, Wendy Kennedy, expressed pleasure and commented, “Such a great tribute to our Charley Pride – a man who means the world to millions of people. Charley is so missed and so loved by his fans – he will never be forgotten.”
While another named Paul Dula commented, “Right where he belongs, welcoming folks into that beautiful place! A great honour, very well deserved!!” The third one mentioned, “It is wonderful to see the statue of Charley Pride Well deserved. He has always been my favourite singer and person. I have met him and Rozene many times when he has been touring here in Australia and at Branson, I will always love him.”