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Garth Brooks: The Library Of Congress Gershwin Prize For Popular Song

Stream now or tune in Thursday, Dec. 31, 2020 at 9:30 p.m. on KPBS TV

Garth Brooks at the live taping at DAR Constitution Hall in Washington, D.C.

Credit: Courtesy of Scott Henrichsen/PBS

Above: Garth Brooks at the live taping at DAR Constitution Hall in Washington, D.C.

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This March, The Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song salutes country music icon Garth Brooks. The titan of country music is the youngest recipient of this prestigious prize.

The program premieres Sunday, March 29 on KPBS. The program will also be broadcast at a later date via the American Forces Network to American service men and women and civilians at U.S. Department of Defense locations around the world.

The special, recorded at Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) Constitution Hall on March 4, 2020, features an all-star tribute to Brooks from family, friends and admirers.

Photo credit: Courtesy of Scott Henrichsen/PBS

Trisha Yearwood at the live taping at DAR Constitution Hall in Washington, D.C.

The concert lineup includes Trisha Yearwood, Keith Urban, Ricky Skaggs, Chris Stapleton, Keb’ Mo’, Lee Brice, the Howard University Choir, host Jay Leno and a special performance by honoree Garth Brooks.

Photo credit: Courtesy of Scott Henrichsen/PBS

Keb' Mo' at the live taping at DAR Constitution Hall

Commenting on the Gershwin Prize Brooks said, “An award is only as good as the names on it. 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.”

Gershwin Prize - Garth Brooks | Promo

Tune in March 29 as The Library of Congress awards the Gershwin Prize for Popular Song to country music icon, Garth Brooks.

About Garth Brooks:

Brooks is one of the major changemakers in the history of country music. His music weaves the beauty of poetry, the universality of the human experience and the inclusiveness of other musical genres, making him one of the most influential performers in country music today. He has combined the sound of traditional country music with the performance style of arena rock legends of the 1970s, creating a unique artistic vision.

Brooks’ first number one single, “If Tomorrow Never Comes,” set the stage for him as a songwriter and showed his knack for expressing very personal feelings that touch on universal truths. The songs that he has written, as well as those he has chosen to record, have often moved beyond 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.

He has built a loyal fan base, not only through his music, but also his charity work, including his foundation, Teammates for Kids. He received the inaugural George H. W. Bush Points of Light Award for Caring and Compassion to celebrate his humanitarian efforts.

Photo credit: Courtesy of Scott Henrichsen/PBS

Garth Brooks and his band at the live taping at DAR Constitution Hall in Washington D.C.

About The Prize:

Bestowed in recognition of the legendary songwriting team of George and Ira Gershwin, the Gershwin Prize recognizes a living musical artist’s lifetime achievement in promoting the genre of song as a vehicle of entertainment, information, inspiration and cultural understanding. Previous recipients are Paul Simon, Stevie Wonder, Sir Paul McCartney, songwriting duo Burt Bacharach and the late Hal David, Carole King, Billy Joel, Willie Nelson, Smokey Robinson, Tony Bennett and Emilio and Gloria Estefan.

Photo credit: Courtesy of The Library of Congress

Gershwin medal

Watch On Your Schedule:

This episode is available to stream on demand with KPBS Passport, video streaming for members at $60 or more yearly, using your computer, smartphone, tablet, Roku, AppleTV, Amazon Fire or Chromecast. Learn how to activate your benefit now.

Join The Conversation:

Garth Brooks is on Facebook and Instagram.

The Library of Congress is on Facebook and Instagram.

PBS is on Facebook and Instagram. #PBSGershwin


A co-production of WETA Washington, D.C.; Bounce AEG, a division of Concord Music Group; and the The Library of Congress. Major funding for the broadcast is provided by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, PBS and public television viewers. Additional funding is provided by The Ira and Leonore Gershwin Fund and The Leonore S. Gershwin Trust for the benefit of the Library of Congress Trust Fund Board, Michael Strunsky, Trustee; AARP, Buffy Cafritz and Marjorie Fisher Furman. Air transportation is provided by United Airlines.


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