Anna Gurganus, Correspondent
JSU’s very own Riley Green has recently been named New Male Artist of the Year by the Academy of Country Music. This honor is a great boost towards the young singer-songwriter’s career as it is the first major award he has won.
The win was announced Aug. 20 by Keith Urban on a virtual call with Green. The 55th Academy of Country Music Awards ceremony will air live Sept. 16 on CBS at 7 p.m. CST.
“My love for country music started with my granddaddy Buford playin’ me some old Merle Haggard songs when I was a kid,” said Green. “I have always appreciated the way a song can tell a story. That’s what motivated me early on to write songs of my own. I wanted to tell my story. The story of my hometown, my home state, and my friends and family who helped make me who I am today.”
Green’s hometown happens to be Jacksonville, Ala. He attended Jacksonville State University and was quarterback for the football team from 2008 to 2010. He left college when his music career took off.
Some of Green’s more popular songs include, “Different ‘Round Here” and “I Wish Grandpas Never Died.” His fame increased after he signed a deal with a division of Big Machine Label Group called BMLG Records.
Green also gained a following from doing two stints on the reality show, “Redneck Island.” He and his partner, Becky Andrews, won the CMT competition in 2016.
Green was a great help to the city of Jacksonville and the University after the 2018 tornado destroyed much of the city’s buildings and infrastructures. He held a benefit concert at Iron City in Birmingham in which all proceeds were put toward the tornado relief. The charitable act raised $50,000 for the city.