RCA Studio A in Nashville’s famed Music Row was nearly demolished in recent months in order to make way for new construction. However, it was saved after the protests of countless musicians and locals, demanding that the studio be saved as a piece of the city’s rich music history and landscape. Those protests were heard, and now Studio A and all of Music Row will be preserved under its new designation as a U.S. National Treasure.

Monday (Jan. 12), the National Trust for Historic Preservation honored Music Row with the distinction of National Treasure during a ceremony held at Studio A, and singer-songwriter Ben Folds -- who is also the owner of Grand Victor Sound Studio in Music Row -- was on hand.

“So much has happened in the last few months [since the ‘Save Studio A’ campaign began],” Folds said during the ceremony. “I’m just really very happy that the building is still here and that [studio manager and preservationist] Sharon Corbitt-House is not strapped to the front of it. It’s great that everyone has come together to help keep the musical identity of Nashville, which is the reason we live here.”

Music Row is now one of 50 National Treasures in the U.S.

“Singers and songwriters have been telling the stories of life’s ups and downs for decades,” executive vice president and chief preservation officer of the National Trust, David Brown, said. “Music Row has had its share of ups and downs just like the folks in the songs. But like so many of the characters in the country songs, Music Row has survived. At the National Trust, we feel it’s time to ensure that the story of the place that produced these classics is also known. As a native Tennessean who grew up with a deep love for this city, I am pleased to be here today to talk about Music Row as the heart and soul of country music.”

After acknowledging what makes Music Row great, Brown went on to say it’s important to let Folds and many more get back to work in order to preserve that greatness.

“The good news is that the studio is safe,” he added. “The bad news? This is a working studio and Ben needs to get back to work, so enjoy chatting but leave quickly so the recording can continue. Socializing for a cause is great, but we have to get back to making music.”