(CelebrityAccess) — The U.S. Library of Congress announced that country music legend Garth Brooks is the next recipient of the Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song.
“Garth Brooks’ appeal as a performer, songwriter and humanitarian has brought many new fans into the world of country music,” said Librarian of Congress Carla Hayden. “During his career, Brooks has set countless records, earned numerous awards and elevated country music into a national anthem of the American people.”
Brooks, who is the youngest artist to ever be selected for the honor, will receive the prize at an all-star tribute concert in Washington, D.C., on March 2020.
The concert will air on PBS stations nationwide in spring 2020 with a broadcast date to be announced. The program also will be broadcast via the American Forces Network to U.S. Department of Defense locations around the world.
“An award is only as good as the names on it,” said Brooks. “First off, for any musician, the name Gershwin says it all. Add to Ira’s and George’s names the names of the past recipients, and you have an award of the highest honor. I am truly humbled.”
The Gershwin Prize is intended to honor living musical artists who have made a substantial lifetime contribution to popular music and who “exemplify the standard of excellence associated with George and Ira Gershwin.”
Brooks, who combines the traditional country music with a modern arena aesthetic, has built a loyal fan base even though his music sometimes steps outside of the traditional subject matter for country music, such as “We Shall Be Free,” which won a GLADD Media Award in 1993 for addressing homophobia, homelessness, and racism.
Brooks has also been recognized for his charity work, and he received the inaugural George H. W. Bush Points of Light Award for Caring and Compassion for his work with his foundation “Teammates for Kids.”