Member Since 1998
There has not been a slew of groups inducted into the Opry cast in the modern era. That makes it all the more notable that Diamond Rio made its first Opry appearance in October, 1991, and in 1998 became the first group since The Whites, 14 years earlier, to receive Opry membership.
With their lighter-than-air harmonies and intricately woven instrumentation, this six-man group has been turning songs into standards since their debut album in 1991 helped to define the “young country” movement. Diamond Rio has been awarded Top Vocal Group honors six times in total from the Academy of Country Music and the Country Music Association and sold more than 10 million records, with more than 20 Top 10 singles.
Diamond Rio evolved from the Tennessee River Boys, a band that performed at the former Opryland theme park. Singer Marty Roe, guitarist Jimmy Olander, and keyboardist Dan Truman left that group to form their own in 1986. Drummer Brian Prout and mandolin player Gene Johnson joined the new band in 1987. Bassist Dana Williams—a nephew of Opry members Sonny and Bobby Osborne —came on board two years later.
In 1991, the group’s first single, “Meet in the Middle,” went to No. 1 and was followed by a pair of Top 5 hits—“Mirror, Mirror” and “Mama Don’t Forget to Pray for Me.” Such No. 1 songs as “How Your Love Makes Me Feel,” “One More Day,” “Beautiful Mess,” and “I Believe” followed. The 2001 hit ballad “One More Day” became a key song of healing after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.
In 2004, Diamond Rio received the Minnie Pearl Humanitarian Award for its work on behalf of Big Brothers Big Sisters of America, for which the band members serve as National Ambassadors, as well as the American Lung Association, and others.
Following the release of their 2006 album, Greatest Hits, Vol. 2, Diamond Rio split from their long-time label, Arista Nashville. In August of 2007, the group signed with Word Records.