BREAKING: Lainey Wilson Invited to Join Grand Ole Opry by Reba McEntire

Watch the emotional moment unfold.


Lauren Jo Black

| Posted on

May 21, 2024


9:35 pm

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Lainey Wilson will soon become the newest member of the Grand Ole Opry. The country superstar received a surprise invitation to join the Opry family from country music icon and longtime Grand Ole Opry member Reba McEntire during Tuesday evening’s The Voice finale, which aired live on NBC. 

Lainey Wilson; Photo by: Tyler Golden/NBC
Lainey Wilson; Photo by: Tyler Golden/NBC

The shocking moment took place just moments after Wilson took the stage to deliver an explosive performance her brand new single, “Hang Tight Honey,” from her upcoming album, Whirlwind. The invitation brought the newly crowned ACM Entertainer of the Year to tears. 

McEntire arose from her giant The Voice coach chair to deliver the news, making her way to the stage to stand next to Wilson as she shared the invitation of a lifetime with her. 

THE VOICE — ” Live Finale Part 2” Episode 2517B — Pictured: (l-r) Reba McEntire, Lainey Wilson, Carson Daly — (Photo by: Griffin Nagel/NBC)

“Lainey, I’m so proud of you,” Reba began. “You did a wonderful job and I have heard that I’ve inspired you and what you’ve done so far, and I am thrilled if I had anything to do with your career because you are blowing it up!”

“You are so sweet,” Lainey replied with a smile. 

Reba then continued, “I was so proud of you at the ACMs the other night, and I couldn’t be more proud to be the one that helps you continue to bridge the gap between our generations. Keep ’em all going. I’d like to be the person to invite you to be a member, official member, of the Grand Ole Opry!” 

Wilson was overcome with emotions as her jaw dropped and she embraced Reba in a hug. The live audience, including The Voice coaches Dan + Shay, cheered and rose to their feet as they heard the news. 

Longtime The Voice host, Carson Daly, prompted Wilson to react to the news, and pointed out that it came just days after her birthday.

Lainey Wilson; Photo by: Tyler Golden/NBC
Lainey Wilson; Photo by: Tyler Golden/NBC

“Well, first of all, my family’s over here tonight. I will say they took me to Nashville when I was nine years old, and we went to the Grand Opry and we saw Bill Anderson and Crystal Gayle and Little Jimmy Dickens, and I knew that I wanted to play there,” she tearfully recalled. “I wanted to do it, and it was so crazy that you were asking me to be a member because I look up to you so much. I’m not talking about just musically, but the way that you carry yourself and your work ethic. You inspire me every day.” 

The Grand Ole Opry confirmed that Wilson be inducted on June 7, 2024.

Last fall, we spoke with Wilson backstage at the Grand Ole Opry where she recalled her very first performance, which took place on February 14, 2020.

“I was nervous,” she remembered. “This was it. When you asked me, what venue do you want to play? I would’ve told you the Grand Ole Opry.” 

Lainey Wilson currently reigns as the ACM and CMA Entertainer of the Year. To date, she’s earned seven career No.1s. She is currently the female artist with the most No.1s this decade. She’ll soon kick off the U.S. leg of her Country’s Cool Again Tour, and on August 23, she will release her brand new album, Whirlwind.

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Lauren Jo Black

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Lauren Jo Black

Lauren Jo Black, a University of Central Florida graduate, has immersed herself in the world of country music for over 15 years. In 2008, she co-founded CountryMusicIsLove, eventually selling it to a major record label in 2015. Following the rebranding of the website to Sounds Like Nashville, Black served as Editor-in-Chief for two and a half years. Currently, she assumes the role of Editor-in-Chief at Country Now and oversees Country Now’s content and digital footprint. Her extensive experience also encompasses her previous role as a Country Music Expert Writer for and her work being featured on She’s been spotlighted among Country Aircheck’s Women of Influence and received the 2012 Rising Star Award from the University of Central Florida. Black also spent time in front of the camera as host of Country Now Live, which brought live music directly to fans in 2021 when the majority of concerts were halted due to the pandemic. During this time, she hosted 24 weeks of live concerts via Country Now Live on Twitch with special guests such as Lady A, Dierks Bentley, Jordan Davis, Brett Young, and Jon Pardi. Over the course of her career, she has had the privilege of conducting interviews with some of the industry’s most prominent stars, including Reba McEntire, Blake Shelton, Luke Combs, Carrie Underwood, Luke Bryan, Miranda Lambert, Lainey Wilson, and many others. Lauren Jo Black is a longtime member of the Country Music Association and the Academy of Country Music.