The National Music Council honored one of the industry’s most beloved and successful impresarios July 11, at the 32nd Annual American Eagle Awards. Country Music Hall of Fame inductees the Oak Ridge Boys presented Jim Halsey with the award, which comes in recognition for his lifetime commitment to music and music education.
Halsey was one of several honorees at the 32nd Annual American Eagle Awards, which were held this year in Nashville for the first time. NMC president Dr. David Sanders called Halsey a visionary for his decades-long commitment to music.
“We have a tradition of honoring not only musical performers and writers, but also music educators, supporters of music, impresarios and producers who have shaped the music of our nation,” said Sanders. “Jim Halsey’s ability to nurture artists, and his record of guiding the careers of some of America’s greatest talents, has earned him a special place among those who have made comprehensive contributions to musical life in America.
Halsey is known throughout music as a builder of careers. He has worked with some of the biggest names in country music history, managing or booking acts such as the Oak Ridge Boys, Reba McEntire, Minnie Pearl, George Jones, and even Bob Hope. In addition to managing acts, Halsey is a published author, and his book Starmaker: How to Make It in the Music Business is considered the textbook on a successful music career. All told, Halsey has worked directly to shape the careers of 24 members of the Country Music Hall of Fame. He is to be honored later this year when he is inducted into the Oklahoma Music Hall of Fame.
In addition to his work in the music industry, he was also a teacher of music business at Oklahoma City University, where he led the award-winning and internationally recognized Music and Entertainment Business Program. In 2015, the Halsey Institute began streaming its music and entertainment business classes online, connecting students with 40 of the most renowned experts in the their fields.
“Jim’s commitment to educating a new generation of music professionals as a mentor in both academic and professional settings is exemplary to all those who work for a bright future for American music,” Sanders said.
During the NMC American Eagle Awards, the organization also honored Halsey’s son, the late Sherman Halsey, who died in 2013. The younger Halsey was known throughout the entertainment world as a visionary producer and director of music videos for superstars such as Tim McGraw, Dwight Yoakam, and BB King. Additional 2015 American Eagle Award honorees were Kris Kristofferson, Jim Lauderdale, and Charlie Pride. A special award was presented to the Nashville Mayor’s Office, Metro Nashville Public Schools, and Country Music Association & Country Music Foundation, for the creation and support of the Music Makes Us arts education initiative.
The NMC American Eagle Awards are held annually. For more information about the National Music Council, visit www.musiccouncil.org.