The Judds are the latest act to have their life and career memorialized at the Country Music Hall of Fame. The mother-daughter duo, made up of Naomi and Wynonna Judd, have a new exhibit, Dream Chasers, open now at the CMHOF.
"When you're at a funeral, there are moments that mark your life," Wynonna said at a private reception celebrating the opening. "There are just too many things to say. When you're 18 years old you're supposed to get an apartment and you have hangovers and be late on your rent. And yet a dream come true, I shared a bus with [my mom]. Thank you God."
The Judds had more than more than 20 hit singles, including No. 1 songs like "Mama He's Crazy," "Girls' Night Out" and "Grandpa (Tell Me 'Bout the Good Ol' Days)," among others, throughout the '80s. In 1990, Naomi announced she was retiring after being diagnosted with Hepatitis C, wrapping up their final tour one year later.
Wynonna went on to have a successful solo career with hits like "She is His Only Need" and "Tell Me Why." Wy also has a son, Elijah and daughter, Grace, who have only recently become aware of the level of their mother's fame.
"I am just so keenly aware today that as I have raised my children, my son Elijah said to me the other day, he goes, 'I googled you this morning, mom,' Wynonna recalls. "And he goes, 'You were really, really famous.' And your net worth, you're really worth a lot.' And I said, 'I have only just begun.' But what a legacy we leave behind ... We would not be here without those people who looked up to us, believe it or not, as dysfunctional as our family as singing 'Grandpa,' and 'Love is Alive,' and 'Why Not Me?' And for the American dream of what can happen when you choose to believe and to take a chance."
The Judds have periodically reunited, but have largely continued forging their own paths apart, with Wynonna continuing to make music. Still, having the exhibit at the Hall of Fame was a chance for the mother and daughter to celebrate and reminisce on their overwhelming success.
"This moment in time will come and go, and it's kind of hard to believe that tomorrow I will be right back on the farm doing chores," Wynonna remarked. "But today here we are standing as people see us, the American dream. And it's so weird, because you know how in country music to our fans, we're family. And all of you are family. We spent more time with you than our own relatives. Honestly.
"And you and I have been through so much together, and we actually made it, and we made it together and I remember," Wy said to her mother.. And I'll close with this. The most tender moment, there were a few, came when you took my hand ... you looked at me and you said, 'My life has been better because of you.' And it's pretty crazy really.It's just a crazy ride, and we make it, and it's a miracle. God is so good, and He's been so gracious and I don't know why. But I know who, and He's been in control of this whole thing."
The Dream Chasers exhibit includes the nurse's uniform worn by Naomi while she was working and trying to get a record deal, industry awards, concert clothing, hand written lyrics and more.
More information can be found at the CountryMusicHallofFame,org.
Photo Credit: Getty images/Rick Diamond