Jim Hurst is the IBMA Guitar Player of the year for 2001 and 2002. He was featured on the cover of the Jan/Feb 1999 issue of Flatpicking Guitar magazine. He and Missy Raines were nominated for IBMA's "Emerging Artist of the Year" in 2000 and 2001. Jim has toured with many top artists such as Trisha Yearwood and Holly Dunn and most recently was featured on Sara Evans' RCA/BMG recording "No Place That Far", whose single climbed to #1 on the Billboard Chart. In 1999, he released his solo debut, "Open Window"
Jim Hurst has played many different kinds of music including bluegrass, country, rock and blues with several different bands. "I think Lester Flatt and Earl Scruggs, Bill Monroe, Don Reno and Red Smiley, as well as some country music stars were my earliest influences." Later came the influences of Clarence White, Doc Watson, Merle Travis, Chet Atkins, Jerry Reed and Tony Rice. "I listened to each guitarist with a fresh ear." Although flatpicking is a large part of bluegrass guitar, Jim first started learning to play finger-style. "Merle Travis and Chet Atkins made me take a turn in the road." But Jim considers his biggest influence to be Jerry Reed.