From The Tennessean:
…in making her Ryman debut, newcomer Brittany Spencer sang a riveting take of “Independence Day” for Gretchen Peters, who tearfully watched from the Ryman pews; Peters and (Curly) Putnam joined (Loretta) Lynn in earning a Poet’s Award.
“I was a fool to think I wouldn’t cry,” Peters said, adding: “I really believe that songwriting is a calling and what we do is much, much more than entertainment. At their best, song are empathy machines. … They take us into other worlds, they let us stand in somebody else’s shoes for a few minutes. Songs can literally change the world. And the world needs love and empathy more than it ever has.”