Charlie Daniels was the guest of honor at a reception on Tuesday night (Sept. 20), held to celebrate the opening of his exhibit at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, Charlie Daniels: Million Mile Reflections. The country music legend, who will also be inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in October, admits that he is overwhelmed at the thought of both career milestones.

"Some of the souvenirs of my life are going to be on display here, at the crossroads of country music. It's a sobering fact for a chubby fiddle player who came to town with a dream," Daniels shared at the reception. "I was just one of the hopefuls who desperately wanted to be a part of what was going on in Music City, and was willing to walk out on high and very shaky land to prove it. So, in 1967, I packed up my family, headed to Nashville, armed with three guitars and a wealth of determination and the love of a good woman."

It took Daniels four more years to release his eponymous debut album, and another four years to land a Top 40 country hit with "The South's Gonna Do It." But with or without any success, Daniels knew when he moved to Music City that he had found his home.

"I was determined that no matter what, Nashville would be the termination of my career. I was going to stay, come hell or high water," he said. "As I often say, when I leave Tennessee, I want to go to Heaven, because there's no other place but there that I'd rather be.

"[The Country Music Hall of Fame] and what goes on here transcends the music business. It goes above and beyond the day-to-day struggles and competition. It sets itself apart, above the pressure, politics and the daily hustle outside these doors. It's a place where country music fans from around the world can come and take a look into the private lives of the artists they admire," Daniels added. "This monument to the music of America and the people who write it, perform it, present it to the public, it's a place where the past is respected and the future is excitingly anticipated.

"Above all the music capitals across the nation, Nashville stands alone as a city where the music truly brings us together. It's the music that brought us here, the music that keeps us here, and the music will live on long after we've all gone to our eternal homes," he continued. "To be able to leave your mark on that music is about all we can ask."

Daniels concluded his brief remarks by expressing his gratitude for both his new exhibit and, most importantly, his permanent induction into the Country Music Hall of Fame.

"Ever since I learned three chords on that old Stella guitar, it's been a desire of my heart to be here in Nashville. To be one of the cogs in this huge, diverse wheel that makes up the music that comes out of this wonderful city," Daniels admitted. "Not only has that blessing been granted, not only did I get to share my music with the world, but thanks to the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, I get to share my life."

Daniels will be inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame on Oct. 16, along with Randy Travis and Fred Foster, as part of the Class of 2016. His Charlie Daniels: Million Mile Reflections exhibit is now open, through March of 2017; more information is available on the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum's official website.

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