Unless you’ve been hiding under a rock lately, you’ve heard about the controversy surrounding Beyoncé’s performance with the Dixie Chicks on the CMA Awards. On the day of the awards, rumors started to swirl that Beyoncé was going to perform. Country fans were outraged to say the least, and the outrage has continued over the course of the past few days.
With this year being the 50th anniversary of the CMAs, many country legends were invited to perform. The night was meant to be a celebration of these icons and country music’s history, hence the reason why so many country fans were upset about Beyoncé’s performance. In addition, the CMA had previously promised there would be no cross-genre collaborations at these awards.
But despite that promise, it seems that one country legend knew well ahead of time that it would be broken. That artist was Alan Jackson, who was invited back to the CMA Awards to participate in the eight-minute opener and also put on a show-stopping performance with George Strait.
Yahoo! Music interviewed Jackson before the CMAs, prior to the big announcement about Beyoncé’s performance. Since the CMA had not made the announcement at that time, Yahoo! asked Jackson if he thought there were enough country legends on the show so the CMA didn’t “have time to bring the pop stars in.” This was Jackson’s response:
“Yeah, they may play some real country music. But I understand the dang television station trying to get the ratings with whatever they think is gonna prop it up, with some big event with some other type of artist on there. Yeah, hopefully it’ll be a good country music show for a change.“
Although there was a pop collaboration at the CMA Awards, it didn’t take away from all of the country legends who came to perform. Jackson was happy to be there, saying of his performance with Strait, “George Strait and myself are the two that have been nominated and won the most awards of about anybody, so it was nice of them to include us.”
You can tune in to the clip below to relive Jackson and Strait’s remarkable performance on the CMAs.