There is fame and then there is FAME, which pretty much describes Denver’s career. After playing in bands, including the Chad Mitchell Trio, Denver’s star began to rise when Peter, Paul & Mary recorded his song, “Leaving On A Jet Plane.”

However, it was Denver’s 1971 single, “Take Me Home, Country Roads,” that introduced the bespectacled artist to the masses, leading to chart domination with No. 1 songs like “Annie’s Song,” “Thank God I’m A Country Boy,” Sunshine On My Shoulder” and “I’m Sorry.”

Movies followed, specifically the 1977 hit comedy “Oh, God!” which featured George Burns in the omnipotent title role who chose Denver’s grocery store clerk character to be his messenger on Earth.

Along with the fame came awards including the Academy Of Country Music awarding him its 1974 album of the year honor for Back Home Again. Other awards included three from the American Music Awards, two from the Country Music Association including 1975’s entertainer of the year, and an Emmy for his “An Evening With John Denver.”

An avid pilot, Denver died when his experimental plane crashed into the Pacific Ocean near Pacific Grove Calif., Oct. 12, 1997. He was 53.

The concert celebrating Denver’s legacy as well as his admission to the Colorado Music Hall Of Fame takes place April 21 at the 1STBANK Center in Broomfield, Colo. Along with Olivia Newton-John, the lineup includes performances by Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, Lee Ann Womack and John Oates.

Also appearing will be Denver’s former band collaborators, including Starland Vocal Band’s Bill Danoff, who co-wrote “Take Me Home, Country Roads” and John Sommers who penned “Thank God I’m A Country Boy.” Composer Lee Holdridge, who conducted orchestras for Denver as well as Barbra Streisand and Neil Diamond, will lead the Boulder Philharmonic Orchestra in a tribute to the late artist.

An added attraction will be the appearance of artist Brian Olsen, who, as the protégé of the late Denny Dent, will speed-paint a portrait of Denver.

Commemorating Denver’s dedication to environmental causes, noted environmental activists will also appear.

“Earth Day seems so fitting for the tribute because John used his popularity to promote the environment, his favorite cause over his lifetime,” AEG Live Rocky Mountains president / CEO Chuck Morris said in announcing the concert.

Tickets go on sale Feb. 18 at 10 a.m. Mountain Time. A portion of the proceeds will benefit the Cousteau Society, the Windstar Foundation and the University of Colorado’s School of Music. For more information, visit the 1STBANK Center website.