The 2017 CMAs were full of can’t miss moments. In case you did miss it, that’s what we’re here for. From tear-jerking tributes to hilarious jokes from hosts Carrie Underwood and Brad Paisley, here’s a recap of all the best moments.
1. An Emotional Opening
The show opened with Eric Church singing “Amazing Grace.” That led to Darius Rucker’s hit “Hold My Hand,” in which he was joined by Lady Antebellum, Keith Urban, Tim McGraw, Faith Hill, Reba, Kelsea Ballerini, Garth Brooks, Luke Bryan, Little Big Time and Thomas Rhett all on stage together. The biggest names in country came together as a tribute to the terrorist attacks in Las Vegas, Charlottesville and New York as well as recent natural disasters in Texas and Puerto Rico.
2. A Tribute to Troy Gentry
Eddie Montgomery was joined on stage by Rascal Flatts and Dierks Bentley to pay tribute to Troy Gentry, one half of Montgomery Gentry, who tragically died in September in a helicopter crash. Together, they sang “My Town” as the late singer’s wife and daughter teared up in the audience.
3. Brad and Carrie Mock Donald Trump
It wouldn’t be the CMAs without a political joke! When making fun of the new CMA guidelines — they were told to avoid politics — the hosts couldn’t help but make a crack about the president. Taking on Underwood’s “Before He Cheats,” the duo sang ““And it’s fun to watch, yeah, that’s for sure, until little rocket man starts a nuclear war. And then maybe next time he’ll think before he tweets.”
4. Pink Goes Country
She’s not used to being on a country stage, but she still crushed it at the CMAs singing her heartfelt new song, “Barbies.”
5. Sugarland Teases New Music
They haven’t put out music together since 2010, but Jennifer Nettles and Kristian Bush presented the Vocal Duo of the Year award at the CMAs and hinted at new music!
6. Keith Urban’s Song About the Harvey Weinstein Scandal
The country star performed “Female,” which was penned for the women who went public with sexual misconduct allegations against disgraced film producer Harvey Weinstein. He didn’t need any production — the Aussie singer stood in the middle of the stage alone, playing guitar, while the lyrics scrolled behind him.
7. Carrie Underwood Cries During “In Memoriam” Tribute to Vegas Victims
While Carrie Underwood sang the gospel song “Softly and Tenderly,” photos of country music artists who had died this year scrolled behind her. The end featured pictures of the victims of the Las Vegas shooting and Underwood broke down in tears, struggling to finish the performance.
8. Garth Brooks Wins Entertainer of the Year
He’s been doing it forever, and it still works! Brooks took home the biggest award of the night and still looked genuinely surprised after all of these years. The best part of his speech — which included thanking his fans and his crew — was the ending. “Mrs. Yearwood, I am yours forever,” he said to wife, Trisha.
Plus, see the full list of winners here!
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