Hall of Infamy?

Our story so far: A while back in an open-thread free-for-all, the issue of the SG Hall of Fame in Dollywood came up, specifically the number of HOF inductees whose commemorative bronze plaques had not secured a sponsor. Currently, sponsorship rates per plaque seem to be going for $2000 and of 114 inductees, 15 or so are still without an underwriter, comprising a so-called deadbeat list.

Some people find this state of affairs disrespectful and appalling, others think the HOF is effectively money changing in the temple of southern gospel memory, and others think the inductees and/or their heirs or estates need to pony up in recognition of the honor bestowed upon them.

All caught up, now? Good, because now things get interesting (or not … I’m working with the material I got here folks).

Comes then Melvin Klaudt, of the Klaudt Indian Family, who doesn’t really seem to have wanted his mother honored by the HOF in the first place, resented a $2000 invoice for her HOF plaque  showing up in the mail, and wants her plaque to come down. Now.

My mother, Lillian Little Soldier Klaudt was inducted in 2004. She had a picture on a plaque for a couple of years. Unknowing to us, this was changed to a bust that cost $2,000. Our foundation, Klaudt Indian Memorial Foundation, was billed $2,000. for the bust after the fact. There is an ethical question besides a financial obligation attached to this. We, according to our 501 c 3 public charity IRS ruling couldn’t take the funds out of the foundation to pay it in the first place.


Finally, my mother has other more important spiritual things to lay at the feet of Jesus than a SGM hall of fame plaque.

Full disclosure of the $2,000. must be disclosed to the public who are excited to nominate somone deserving of this award. I seems like everything else, lets just buy us an award. SGM is eat up with awards. Every year there is a new one.

I beg the Hall to remove my mother from this honor and remove her name from the deadbeat list. She evidently does not deserve it.

Full comment here.

Tonight, Harold Timmons, of the Chuck Wagon Gang, wrote in, begging to differ with Klaudt:

While I do respect Mr. Melvin’s Klaudt’s opnion, I do challenge his position on asking that his Mother be removed from the SGM HOF wall for any reason. The Chuck Wagon Gang worked with the Klaudt Indian Family many times during the ‘60’s and even into the ‘70s at Constitution Hall in Washington, DC. The Klaudt Indian Family and The Chuck Wagon Gang were regular members of the highly syndicated TV series, “Bob Poole’s Gospel Favorites”. To me, the Klaudt Indian Family are unique unto themselves, as of Indian Heritage as well as involved in “Southern Gospel Music”. It was a board of directors who recognized Mrs. Klaudt and her contribution. It was the voters who agreed with the nominating committee, who in essence bestowed the honor of inducting Mom Klaudt into the SGM HOF. How on earth can anyone, even a family member, ask that Mrs. Klaudt removed for any reason?

Southern Gospel Music in some aspect works on a play “B” almost daily, and most certainly there could be a plan “B” in situations on the SGMA HOF list. This could be a family split of the dues due, or fans or friends, or even some businessmen.

Full comment here.

I really don’t have a dog in this fight. I’d much rather see the HOF focus more on bolstering its curatorial dimension in order to become a hub for the preservation and study of the music. But then again, that costs money and if selling HOF plaques is a way to raise money that supports a worthy, underlying cause, so be it.

In any event, though, one does have to wonder how hard the HOF is really trying to fund these plaques if, as Timmons says in his comment, da Gang was unaware “that no contributions had been received since [Anna Carter Gordon Davis’s] nomination” and only learned of the situation “by recently visiting this site.”

(For the record, and before Charlie Waller puts a check in the mail, I have decided to forgo my HOF Plaque Funding Broker’s commission.)

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  1. quartet-man wrote:

    The part that bugs me is their doing the plaques and then invoicing. It seems to me they could stick to the less expensive plaques, or not buy them until people forked over the money. How many of us would want someone to buy something we never asked for and then billed us?

  2. John wrote:

    Sending a bill to anyone to fund a plaque for a HOF inductee is tacky, tacky, tacky. And that is as kind as I can state it.

    If the Hall of Fame does not have the wherewithall to do this right, then do not do it at all. To ask a family member of an honoree to fund the thing is a slap in the face.

    I do not have a dog in this fight, other than being a SG fan. I do not know the Klaudt family, nor anyone else involved. Fact is, I have never heard the Klaudt family sing. I just think this is an indicator of some of the dumb thinking that goes on in SG.

  3. Harold Timmons wrote:

    The inductees go into the HOF. Plaqyes are not made until they are paid for by someone, whether family, individual, businesman, corporation, whatever.

  4. abk wrote:

    Ever since the incorporation of the plaques into the Hall of Fame, the plaques have become a part of the Induction Ceremony. The Hall of Fame asks for the money to afford the plaques in whatever way possible. Most of them see that the plaque is paid for, a select few have not, therefore, there are a few plaques without benefactors.

    There are only a handful of inductees/inductee families that will not pay for the plaque, but I would pretty well guarantee that every one of them expect to see a plaque for their induction regardless of whether they choose to pay for it or not.

  5. DJPhil wrote:

    To put somebody in any “Hall of Fame” and asking them or family members to pay for it is tacky!!! I would tell them to take a flying leap!!

  6. Greg wrote:

    I would echo the sentiments of others who have described this entire affair as tacky.

    The disgraceful “buy here/pay here” policy for honoring its inductees makes the HOF appear as a low grade moneymaking operation–and not a lucrative one at that.

  7. David Bruce Murray wrote:

    Just to be clear on the Klaudt induction, though, Melvin has indicated his mother was already in the Hall Of Fame for two years before his family received an invoice.

    I don’t see anything wrong with requesting funds, etc. It’s the invoice part coming two years after the fact that isn’t right.

    The SGMA decided to upgrade the plaques. They are letting people know they need money in order to do that. Fine…no problem…but they shouldn’t be billing anyone for it.

    It would be like my church deciding to add carvings to all the tomb rocks in our cemetery and then sending everyone a bill.

    My underlying hope is that they actually sent the Klaudts a request for funding that the Klaudts perceived as an invoice rather than an actual invoice. Surely, that must be the case. Can anyone from the SGMA verify what sort of correspondence they sent out about the need for more money? I know some of you who have already posted on the matter are board members and the website designer of the SGMA website.

  8. KDM wrote:

    In my experience, an award is given, not purchased. What really blows my mind is that they will bestow these awards, and then bill the family without giving them the opportunity to decline the honor. Talk about being put on the spot. If you can’t afford to give someone an award, don’t give it! And don’t expect the family to pay for the privilege! Either you honor someone’s accomplishments with no strings attached, or you don’t do it at all. Any other way is not honoring someone, it’s fleecing. Bad taste, people.

  9. gina wrote:

    I agree with the others who think this is WAY beyond tacky. Congratulations… now pay up!

  10. wackythinker wrote:

    I agree with the person who said that, if the SGMA can’t afford to buy the plaques, they shouldn’t be handing out the awards.

    It would be like my church announcing to put in a new stained glass window in memory of my sainted grandmother, then asking the family to pay for it. If I wanted a stained glass memorial to my grandmother, I should be the one offering to pay for it, not someone else ASKING me to pay for a memorial I didn’t ask for.

    And Mr Klaudt is right: She’s in a much better “hall of fame.”

  11. sophia green wrote:

    And how does everybody know that these people are being “billed” for the plaques? This claim is coming from one person.

    I’m sure that I would be safe in saying that those of you who are griping about SGMA aren’t even members.

    This is the only business I have ever seen where the people doesn’t support the artists like they should, they don’t support the Hall of Fame like they should, they don’t support anything. Most of them complain when they have to pay miniskule $10 to get into a concert with 4 groups on it, let alone pay a measley $20/year to support a Hall of Fame. It’s bad enough when the Hall of Fame can’t get corporate funds due to the fact that the word “gospel” is in its name, the “fans” of southern gospel music are not willing to support it either!

    Half of you wouldn’t even care if your favorite artist were to go in the Hall of Fame, receive an award, or really even die a pauper. As long as some of you can still gossip and find fault in somebody other than yourselves, then that’s okay.

    I suppose its time I start ignoring these blogs and some of you people who post on it. I’ve been around the country, bluegrass, rock, and pop crowds…southern gospel is my favorite music. But there’s not a group of people more backbiting, more gossipy, more complaining, more rude, more moody, and more betraying than some of the people in southern gospel music.

    God annoints the music, but this business is anything but. Some of you are the very reason this music is dying.

  12. oldtimer wrote:

    One word - Waller.

  13. NoBody wrote:

    #11 Sophia - Honey, no one is backbiting here, they are all just surprised at the gesture of honoring someone, only to come around and, “oh, you have to pay for that”. But, even though most here are surprised at this, this is Southern Gospel just doing what it does. And let me say it’s about time this becomes public knowledge.

    If you want a song on the charts…MONEY, If you want a fan award…MONEY, if you want a record deal…MONEY, if you want an agent…MONEY, if you want your song promoted to radio…MONEY, if you want your BUST in the Hall of Fame…MONEY!!!

    In no other genre do you find this BS. If you got mare TALENT than MONEY, your screwed. Now if you got looks and NO TALENT and you got MONEY (your a BIG SG hit)

    You can ignore it if you want, but if you’ve got the MONEY…that’s the ONLY thing you need. From the day you start your SG career till way after your DEAD! All you need to to succeed in Southern Gospel Music is MONEY! You don’t need talent, you don’t need looks, you don’t need musical ability, you don’t need a personality and you don’t even need to know people.

    …and you wonder why Southern Gospel Music is DEAD!

  14. cdguy wrote:

    sophia green - #11 — I make my living in sgm. Have for a long time. Been a fan as long as I can remember.

    I also like a lot of other kinds of music, and have been to other “halls of fame”. I doubt any other music halls of fame expect ANYONE to donate money to put up a plaque, family or otherwise. It’s done through the routine donations and sponsorships of fans and music companies. And if they don’t have the money to put up a placque, they either go after donations first, or don’t put up a placque at all.

    And they don’t seem to ask for the donations on behalf of a particular honorees’ placque. They would say something like, “we’re honoring some of our finest performers and supporters, and need finances to do that properly.” That approach, I believe, would be much more palatable that saying, “we need $XXXX to honor your family member.”

    More backbiting, gossip, et al, than any other genre? Probably not. More hypocritical, because of the Gospel we’re supposed to be upholding? Probably.

  15. Bones wrote:

    Does anyone in the country Music Hall of fame pay for anything? It sounds like if you can’t afford it, you don’t get one. Mom Klaudt has already been loved by the people who knew hwe. We like her if she has an award or not. Are we going to have the singing News awards there?

  16. quartet-man wrote:

    Sophie, IF they bill after the fact, I still find it wrong no matter where it is. If there is a cost involved, that needs to be stated first or if they upgraded the plaques that were up, they needed to make people aware before doing it, not do it first and bill second.

    I do belong to the SGMA. I think they do a great thing. I don’t know if they bill after or not. I am going by the list of people who need funding and the comment here.

    On the other side, I don’t like the payola in other ways in SG, but face it the SG industry isn’t all that lucrative. Many people aren’t willing to pay a fair price for concerts and the like. So, that is part of the problems. Another part is that there are some who take advantage of peoples desires to make it and make money from it. I have no problems with money being made honestly, but at times there are those who scam. Nonetheless, even with the lack of funds, I still disagree with billing something not asked for (if that is what is going on.)

  17. NG wrote:

    If you are offered the opportunity to be on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in Los Angeles you or a sponsor have to pay $25,OOO.

    Here’s the details:

    “The Hollywood Chamber of Commerce Walk of Fame Committee is responsible for selecting a new group of entertainers each year to receive stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. New recipients are announced each June for the following year. In order for a person to get a star on the Walk of Fame, he or she must agree to attend a presentation ceremony within five years of selection, and a fee (currently $25,000 must be paid; some of it is set aside for maintenance and repair, with the rest going towards the installation, security, publicity, and staging costs.
    “The fee is often paid by sponsors such as film studios and record companies, as part of the publicity for a release with which the honoree is involved”

  18. Wade wrote:

    About the NEW Singing News Fan Awards… I heard that you buy your ticket for the show and then when you get there a PSL ( Permanent Seat License ) A INVOICED AMOUNT is gaff taped to the seat for The Right to BUY that seat Year after Year will be there and if you wanna stay for the show you will pay it. If not you will have to leave and they will announce your name for not paying the invoice.

    The NQC would not go along with this kinda fund raising thus the move to Dollywood!!

    Makes as much sense as what I have heard above.

    Money is more important in SCG music because there is not enough of a PIE in it for record companies to promote like they do secular music and it is a pay to play opportunity. Much like SELF PUBLISHING A BOOK.

    If you believe in it put your money where your message is.

    Having money does not insure success. example Perfect Heart & Young Harmony and all the other regional groups supported by wealthy ppl who we have never heard of.

    I have a $500,000 bus we can buy for $10,000 if we can get 100 ppl to send $250. My Brother has a bus for sale too but I can afford his!!

    ahhhh the funky math of SGM. Ppl in SGM do funny money. Like how could you really be surprised you were ripped off when you did biz with a company who had a name that was a synonym for bandit.


  19. bandless wrote:

    Number 13—So true and so sad. It really confirms the decision that I have made to stay out of the industry and do my own thing.

  20. JulieBelle wrote:

    Seems to me the Hall of Fame should raise the money to pay for the plaques/busts or whatever they decide to put into their HOF….which will generate revenue for them with visitors coming to view all on display.

    It’s extremely tacky to bill the family or group to pay for their plaque. Why not do a pr campaign to raise money each year for the plaques for those inducted. They’d know the number and surely they could float it until fans could donate or family could participate. If not, maybe another type of memorial/recognition should be explored.

    I’m sick to death of southern gospel artists and the industry as a whole for that matter poor mouthing everything all the time. It’s not endearing. Everyone’s having a hard time, but if you can’t afford to put gas in your car, SUV or bus, cut back on the massages, facials, expensive clothes, nail appointments, and fancy cars. Here’s a thought: live on less than you make…and if you aren’t making it, you’ll have to tighten the belt a bit more. And tightening the belt would be a huge problem in sg for sure!

  21. AAron wrote:

    NQC lets everyone that has a booth sing at a showcase in the afternoon… funny thing is… I`ve seen the list for this year`s paying showcase and find it odd the ones that are getting to move up !

  22. Charles Brady wrote:

    I think one of the biggest problems for the HOF is that they have no revenue stream to speak of for the HOF. Since as I understand it Dollywood donates the use of the building but the HOF is responsible for the inside upkeep and all they(SGMA) get is a bill when the carpet wears out every so often isn’t it? The only people who make money from the HOF being at Dollywood is Dolly. I think this was another one of those “trades for exposure” that go on all the time in this industry and yet are not really thought through before the deal is done. Almost like a deal for the sake of a deal.

    Not sure who was responsible for the HOF being at Dollywood but one thing is for sure…. It was a SWEET DEAL FOR DOLLY! LOL!! Some of these old boys are just dumber than a bag of hammers when it comes to putting a business deal together. And put em next to Dolly and they just ….. well you know….

    And listing the names is just tacky…. I understand Mr Klaudts frustration over it. They are using their foundation to remember their parents in a tangible way by supporting young students. A much more worthwhile cause than a bronze plaque in Dollywood that they didn’t ask for….

  23. Tommy wrote:

    Sophia, you mention that the fans dont support the artists. Do you think the reason no one wants to pay to get into a concert has anything to do with the poor quality of mano groups? Could it also be that groups charge a flat at one church on Saturday and then do a love offering the next night because they are “passing through”. Why would I pay for a ticket when I can just wait till they pass through. Here’s a novel idea. If the church wont pay you what you need, stay home. Dont complain that you cant pay your bills on what they can offer you and then go anyway. It appears there are some very poor business men running groups. If you are good enough, people will pay for it. I pay tickets to see Sig Sound, the Gaither Vocal Band and the Booth Brothers. Im not gonna pay a ticket to see 2 local groups open for a third tier group.
    When it comes to the Hall of Fame. Fans dont support it because it is contrary to the message of the music. They sing and say “It’s not about me but about the one we sing about” but then have NUMEROUS award shows and HOF events to honor themselves. If the SGMA wants a HOF, then figure out how to pay for it.Im sick of the guilt trip artists nd the HOf keep laying on us. Quit complaining that you cant make enough money. Maybe its not the fans, maybe your just not that good.

  24. Melvin Klaudt wrote:

    Another issue. If there was not a name attached to the bust, no one would recognize who they were. A picture is worth a thousand words. Here is a novice way to raise money. Remove all the names from the busts, have a contest to name all the recipients. Charge a fee to enter the competition and the one that can name a pre-designated percentage of them wins something. Chances are very few could identify anyone from the busts.

  25. quartet-man wrote:

    To be fair, the list doesn’t say these people and / or their families are deadbeats. I understand why those affected feel that way and I understand that it might appear a way to guilt people into paying. However, technicaly, It simply lets people know who needs donations so that hopefully someone will see that one of their favorites needs it and are willing to pay on them or raise money for them.

  26. Nashville Phil wrote:

    Melvin, I think it is just SINister what the HOF are pulling on y’all.

    HOF’s approach reminds me of the phone scam…They call and tell you that you’ve been awarded an all inclusive vacation somewhere exotic. At the end of the call, they ask for your C/C. To secure your reservation…Of $699.00. Of course you won’t know about the costs, til you’re signed up.

    Same scam…More MONEY!

  27. Knows Nothing wrote:

    To #22
    Was not the HOF going to be in a place called Echota? Log cabin community near Pigeon Forge.Think that was Mr. Summners plan before Dolly gave a better offer.

  28. Jim Cumbee wrote:

    Here’s the quick story on how the HOF ended up at Dollywood. A fellow who was close to J.D. Sumner had an option on some land north of his residential development Echota in Sevierville. He “donated” some of that land to the SGMA and in 1995 or 1996 the SGMA had a big-deal dedication ceremony on that land. Problem was, the guy making the “donation” didn’t yet own the land he donated. {For the non-lawyers out there, you can’t donate land on which you have an option}. One of the SGMA Board members happened to know the CEO of the Herschend company that owned Dollywood. That Board member contacted that CEO and asked if their company had an interest in some kind of affiliation with the SGMA. The CEO expressed immediate interest and within 24 hours, the GM of Dollywood, Ken Bell, was meeting with that Board member, and another member of the SGMA Board, and the deal came together very quickly: Dollywood would donate the land & building, and the SGMA would be responsible for the construction and ongoing maintenance of the interior. It was, and continues to be, a marriage made in deal heaven. The building sits at the entrance to Dollywood which gets about 2 million visitors each year.

    As for the policy to ask for $$ for plaques, the HOF leadership is between a rock and a hard place: we all want a bona fide HOF experience that truly honors the artists, yet there is no steady stream of revenue to do the buildout necessary to maintain a great guest experience. Dollywood does not give $$ to the SGMA, the deal is that the SGMA covers all costs to maintain the interior. So, the HOF leadership has to be creative to find $$ to maintain the experience.

    It’s easy to criticize the HOF policy, but from what I’ve observed, no one has proposed a better idea. Criticism is easy; maintaining a great HOF experience with 2 million annual visitors is real work, and expensive.

  29. Melvin Klaudt wrote:

    Let me clarify my SGMA HOF opinion, which this is, and as I understand everyone has a right to an opinion and I respect this. This is my understanding.
    1. The SGMA Hall of Fame was instituted in 1994.
    2. The first nominees were inducted in 1997.
    3. The HOF was moved to DollyWood in 1999.
    4. My mother Lillian LIttle Soldier was was inducted in 2004.
    5. The picture plaques were removed and replaced by a modified bust that cost $2,000 to the inductees in 2006.
    6. We were billed for the $2,000 in 2006 0r 2007.
    7. I wrote a letter to a member of the committee in 2009 stating my displeasure in the process and suppossedly this was to be presented to the committee at their annual mtg in 2009. Have not had a response to this and really don’t expect one.

    In review of this, I made a comment in reference to this on this blog. I did not state that I was not for my mother being honored as it is being stated. My words were that I was surprised at her nomination and induction because we as a family were not aware of this until being notified. Sure we are proud of this honor, as well as all the other honors we as a family have acquired over the years. However, as a family we do not strive to achieve honors and our process now is to further our parents ministry that they began in the mid 1920’s.

    I am upset with the process and ongoing ramifications of such a process. Someone has had to have a Washington DC mentality in originating this. Develop a program behind closed doors, implement this and then tax the recipients with the costs. Not only do they continue the process this, but there is no full disclosure to the SGM Fan Base, who are excited to to nominate their favorite singer/musician about the $2,000 cost. And then after the fact try to collect the money. I ask the question, is this an ethical Christ centered process to continue? Look at the list of the greats that are hanging out with no sponsors. Anthony Burger, the Speers, Hovie Lister, etc. And then they continue to publish their names year after year as, my personal tag, as financial deadbeats. Study the system. You can tell by the responses on this blog, which of those have Industry ties or are just trying to be “suck ups” to the industry.

    The point was made by one blogger that we were the only ones billed and it was only one persons’s opinion. Pray tell, how were the others notified of the change if they were not notified? One last point. I keep in touch with most of the old timers that have made a solid contribution to SGM. They have shared their displeasure with the system along with some of the widows. I don’t think I am the Lone Ranger in this. All I want is full disclosure to the Industry. Is that too much to ask?

  30. quartet-man wrote:

    #28 Like I have stated, I respect the SGMA and what they are trying to accomplish. Although I haven’t been to the museum, I would love to and it is great that they are trying to keep alive the history and to honor the greats. Again, I don’t like the way this is handled although I understand how hard it is to get financial support in the SG industry (which is sad.)

    With that said, to answer your questions about other alternatives, let me say that if they cannot afford to do it at the level they want, then they should just do the pictures or what they can afford. One of the reasons we are in a state with our economy is due to the same type of things which are wanting to live at a certain level that is beyond what we can afford, and choosing to do it anyhow. There are things I would love to do, but cannot afford, so I don’t do them or do them at a level I can afford. It is as simple as that.

  31. Charlie Sexton wrote:

    I understand and agree that, since Dollywood provides the grounds and building, the SGMA should pay for any exhibits.

    Likewise, I feel that the SGMA should cover the expenses of the bust plaques of those honored in the HOF, and not the families and friends of the honorees.

    Now, if the SGMA can’t afford these plaques, they need to host an event especially designed to raise the funds for paying for these. Maybe a benefit concert? They could even design it in such a way that family, friends, fans, or other patrons could make donations toward a particular honoree. Any that weren’t specifically covered would be subsidized by the general proceeds from the event.

    This way, the honoree (or their families) aren’t placed in a situation, such as Mr. Klaudt has mentioned.

    I feel that had The Klaudts been given the opportunity to make a donation toward the upgraded plaque, that they probably would’ve been glad to. But, it appears that the problem was that they were ‘invoiced’, instead. I agree that I would’ve been a little put out by that.

    There used to be benefit concerts for the SGMA. Why not start them back up? I think someone needs to have a nice little chat with the new Madam President. I have every confidence in her, that she’d try her dead level best to help straighten this out so that it’s not such an issue in the future.

    I know I’d get behind promoting such an event… Would you help? Or would you rather gripe and complain about no one making it right?

  32. Charles Brady wrote:

    Did they move the building? The last time I visited I thought that I had to purchase a ticket to Dollywood to get into the HOF which would have put the building “INSIDE” Dollywood Not “At The Entrance” as if to infer it was anything other than another one of the attractions at the theme park….

    FROM Mr. Cumbee’s Statement:

    and the deal came together very quickly…….

    I guess now we have verification of how the HOF found itself in a situation of being placed into a bucket full of holes that requires the constant refilling of cash… again this was a real deal..

    for DOLLYWOOD!!

  33. cdguy wrote:

    Even further back than the formation of SGMA in 1994, the GMA had a list they called “Gospel Music Hall of Fame”, into which they still induct honorees every year. And just as the GMA started as only southern gospel (before that term was coined), so did their HOF start as only southen gospel.

    GMA had acquired a piece of property on Nashville’s Music Row (don’t know if it was donated), but didn’t have the finances to do anything with it. The land has since changed hands several times. It had Barbara Mandrell’s museum and Crook & Chase’s museum in the 90’s, and I’m not sure what all else. Some of you will recognize where that triangular-shaped proper is.

    I’ve heard that’s why SGMA felt they needed to do a HOF, since GMA dropped the ball.

    Does anyone else have recollections of this?

  34. RobertYork wrote:

    I agree with Charlie #31 why not put together a benefit concert for the HOF. Mr Waller is a big concert promoter and owns his own group would he be the first to volunteer his group. Maybe a good time would be evenings during the Fall when several groups are at or coming to Dollywood. The benefits could be in the evening after Dollywood is closed or even on Thursday evening when they are closed all day. The Fall program runs for four weeks. They could be four benefit concerts. There are a lot of people that attend during October. There are plenty of venues in PF that would accompany such an event.

  35. Jim Cumbee wrote:

    To clarify, the HOF is inside Dollywood and it’s the first building you see once you enter the park. So yes, to visit the SGHOF, you have to buy a ticket to visit Dollywood, but once you’ve bought that ticket, you can visit the HOF PLUS the many many other great attractions within Dollywood, including the incredible Kingdom Heirs daily concerts.

    I don’t know of any music hall of fame experience that doesn’t have a hefty ticket price. Should a SG HOF be free? If so, you need a donor with about $5 million plus an endowment of about $8 million. If so, that land in Sevierville is still empty.

    Dollywood built the building, the SGMA paid the cost of the interiors and any cost to maintain/upgrade the interiors. Dollywood handles all marketing for the park, and SG music is exposed to millions of people each year. Any way you cut it, this is a better deal than having a freestanding building on a lonely hill in Sevierville that might draw a few thousand people in a good year.

    As for a fundraising concert, I think they already do one, it’s the annual SGMA HOF induction event in October held in the park. The park is closed so there is no park fee, so the fee you pay is for the dinner with leftover money going to the HOF.

  36. David Bruce Murray wrote:

    Melvin Klaudt wrote:
    “The point was made by one blogger that we were the only ones billed and it was only one persons’s opinion.”

    Which blogger did that?

  37. Harold Timmons wrote:

    One more name is off the “list”. Anna Davis became sponsired last week, and her placque has been paid in full.


  38. Bones wrote:

    This is turning into such a mess it’s going to fall apart. Too much discord. It will get to the point no one cares if they have an award or not. Mom Klaudt won our hearts years ago.

  39. Charles Brady wrote:

    #36 Read post #11….

  40. Charlie Sexton wrote:

    Jim (#35) says : “As for a fundraising concert, I think they already do one, it’s the annual SGMA HOF induction event in October held in the park.”

    That’s well and good, sir. But does it generate enough $$ to cover the cost of 9 or 10 bronze plaques at $2K each?

    Wait!! That may be part of the problem… Perhaps they should limit the number of incoming honorees to, say 2 or 3 per year… Then, they may could, indeed safely pay the fee for the plaques.

    But as it stands, placing 9 or 10 folks in per year is gonna run around $20K for plaques. I’m thinking that there would need to be at least two or three more fundraising events to raise that kind of money. Of course, anything proceeds over and beyond that could go toward the normal administration costs of running the museum.

    Is that such a preposterous suggestion? I’m curious as to what others think about that idea. It seems to be a common sense thing, to me, at least.

  41. RobertYork wrote:

    Jim # 35 - I would hate to disagree with you the Park IS NOT closed for the HOF Ceremony. It is on Wednesday and Dollywood is open to the public on that day. HOF provides you with free entrance to Dollywood/Parking that day with the price of the $70.00 ticket. If you already have a Dollywood pass you can get your ticket for $50.00.

  42. IndustryMember wrote:

    Why should they limit inductees, when the VAST majority have benefactors. I have purchased two plaques and would do it again. I honestly don’t think anyone received an ‘invoice’. It was probably just a notice to make them aware that there was no benefactor that has donated to help pay for her plaque. If it were a true invoice, then payment would be a requirement. Before you speculate farther, CALL THE SGMA! How hard is that?

    Oh, and with all due respect… If my mother or father were in the hall of fame, and IF I DID RECIEVE A BILL… There’s no way in the world that I’d ask to remove them from the HOF. If it is a true invoice, sure, I’ll agree it is tacky… but asking for a loved one (especially your mother) to be removed, that is the utmost in tacky!! Honestly, all you posters, no matter what the circumstance, would you do that to your parents?

  43. Melvin Klaudt wrote:

    #42 If it wasn’t a bill, why was it even sent in a personal fashion? Since you are an IndustryMember, whatever that means, why didn’t you process this in a more honest and ethical manner? Trying to put a guilt trip on me won’t cut it. Why place someone in the HOF without their knowledge and then place a price on in after the fact? Don’t you, in your ivory insidemember mentality cacoon find this a litttle odd and somewhat irresponsible? The fact remains we made a decision not to yield to an unethical process and will not pay for a plaque and then brag about it. I have written a letter to a board member and that should suffice, Thank you very much!

  44. IndustryMember wrote:

    I called SGMA. They said it was not a bill. Industry member means I perform in a group. Not trying to put a guilt trip on you. Just saying that no matter how tacky or ‘unethical’ the situation may seem to you. How could you desire your mother to be removed from the Hall of Fame? While my parents weren’t involved in Gospel Music, I would count it an extreme honor for them to be recognized whether they were placed in the HOF with or without my knowledge. Unethical…that’s your opinion. Sad that you’d make a request to remove an honor….Pathetic!!!!!!!! How could you have any self respect by doing that to your mom?

  45. wackythinker wrote:

    I think, if SGMA’s intent was not to be “invoicing” the family, there obviously was a breakdown of communications. Communications is a 2-way street. If it receiver doesn’t get the messages as intended, there’s something wrong.

    Maybe, if SGMA wants to continue to notify families of the honor bestowed, and the cost of the placque, they should look at the letter they’re sending, and try to figure out what they can change to make it not be misinterpreted as an invoice.

  46. Melvin Klaudt wrote:

    #44, What is pathetic, is someone taking pot shots at someone for a position they are taking, and then hiding behind a fictitious name. When I open my mouth, and put it on paper, I think about what it is I am saying and then sign my name, No doubt about it. I have spent over 50 years in public service most of it in SGM and don’t consider myself an insider. You have no right to even put insinuate that my mother would even be excited about this. Where do you get off even thinking you know my mother well enough to even consider she might have wanted this procedure. She passed away at age 95, and believe me if she was alive today she would be apalled at charging her or someone for a plaque for an honor. You are the most pathetic suck up to an Industry I have run across in years. Get a life. I don’t need you to do my CIA investigations. It was a bill and it was sent to me for an honor that we did not solicit and it has a cost of $2,000. that was submiitted after the fact. Now if that doesn’t jar your industryinsider brain you are pathetic along with all your other industryinsiders.

  47. Nashville Phil wrote:


  48. IndustryMember wrote:

    I never said industry insider…just member. SGMA said it wasn’t a bill, so why shouldn’t I believe them? Here’s the deal…you are not required to pay it! She remains in the Hall of Fame either way, whether you donate toward the plaque or not. So, don’t support the SGMA, that’s your choice. Perhaps more of us should consider not supporting the cause of preserving our music’s history. Let’s all forget about our heroes. Take them all out of the hall of fame, so years from now the next generation will have no clue of their contributions. The SGMA is a horrible organization for trying to do that, sorry! haha. I’m sorry for any comment that would make you think that I was trying to put words into your mothers mouth. I didn’t realize I did, but the members that I know that are in it consider it an honor and are proud that it was given to them, so I can only assume that she would feel honored.

    Yes, I have a life, and it is spent doing what I love, preserving a herigate by supporting it with all I can. Being in Gospel music, I don’t make much money, but I love this industry and want to help promote and preserve it as much as I can. I urge others to do the same. Why not join and support the SGMA? I wasn’t trying to do your investigating. I just saw 40 posts putting the SGMA down for this, so I thought I’d try an approach of actually asking their side. Why is that wrong? I guess they lied to me.

    Let’s agree to disagree. From what I understand, you are upset that they are requesting a $2000 donation to help with their costs of the plaque, and it upsets you so much that you want them to remove the honor.

    My outlook happens to be different. I am sorry that I don’t mind supporting the SGMA and wouldn’t be offended in their asking to help, and nobody could upset me enough no matter what they did that would cause me to ask them to remove my family member from the Hall of Fame. I truly and honestly am not trying to disrespent anything to do with love of a family member, honestly. I just can’t comprehend how the request would make that big of a deal for you. I’m far from rich, and even though $2k isn’t required from you or me, I know I’d show my support before advising them to remove her.

    Obviously we’ll never agree, and it doesn’t matter. I do see how you’d think it is tacky to send a bill. But can you honestly not see my side of the story at all? If you or anyone on here can really say that you don’t then there’s nothing more for me to say.

  49. Melvin Klaudt wrote:

    Now let’s not backtrack from your position. You are the one that called me pathetic.

    Just go through the above reviews. The blog is referenced as, ” The Hall Of Infamy”. Most of the blogs do not agree with the process or procedures. Personally, I do not agree with your position and as a result cannot see your side period. Look at it this way. A group of grown individuals getting together around a table and the conversation begins by, how can we raise some money. I know, let’s switch the picture plaques that everyone can readily identify without a name and has no cost involved to the recipient, to a modified bust that no one can recognize without a name at the bottom and then charge $2,000. Great idea, let’s go with it. Question, who is going to pay for it. Oh, they will pay because most of them are dead and the family or friends will pay.

    Does the term extortion come to mind? A thumbnail defination of extortion is, the act of getting money by the misuse of authority. This procedure mirrors this definition whether intentional or not. When you have all the adjectives in the above blogs to define this procedure, can’t even you get the picture? Read what one individual said when they found out that somone close to them was left hanging in the deadbeat category. “I was embarrased”. Does that sound like someone that loves this procedure?

    What boils my integrity blood, is that you still, a no name face, involved with a no name group, takes the time to go to a no name SGMA telephone person and come back with a no name opinion to validate your no name position and then have the audacity to call me pathetic. And I suggest you not respond, like you infer in your last statement, because you will never win in a public opinion forum on this subject.

    You say you don’t have much money, but yet you state you paid for two plaques. I would be interested in knowing whose plaques you paid for. Or are they noname recipients.

    And by the way, when they removed my mother’s picture plaque, they had the gall to offer it to me, the first in line, for a $100. price tag. Selling my own mother to me for the price of $100. Now that is pathetic.

  50. IndustryMember wrote:

    I feel so bad for you. I’ll leave this alone. You obviously have a stubborn outlook on supporting the SGMA, and I’d be embarrased to call you a family member of mine. What a jerk.

  51. Wade wrote:

    Melvin… You will find VERY FEW ppl have the stones here to actually use their real name. It is EASY to be critical & CONFUSED HIDING from AFAR!! Just Pray for them…God Bless their hearts!!

  52. Melvin Klaudt wrote:

    51. Wade, not only are they hiding but they actually think they have the discernment to see into peoples hearts and minds. I guess they are eat up with spiritual legalism. Wade, I have tried my best to, with my name attached, to not attack an honor, but to attack a system that makes no sense. My mother that I knew for over 70 years, would never have accepted this process. Bottom line.

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