The 2017 CMT Artists of the Year kicked off with two powerful performances, one from Little Big Town and Andra Day on the song “Rise Up”, and another from the former with Danielle Bradbery, Lee Ann Womack and Common on “Stand Up For Something.”
Both songs were equally powerful in their lyrical content but it was the combined vocals of each of the acts that made “Stand Up For Something” one of the most special moments of the night.
“It all means nothing / If you don’t stand up for something / You can’t just talk the talk / You got to walk that walk, yes you do / It all means nothing / If you don’t stand up for something / And I stand up for you,” sang the performers in unison.
Keith Urban, one of the event’s honorees, was the first person on his feet applauding the performance as it ended, but he was quickly followed by a full standing ovation from the impressed crowd of stars and fans, alike.
The performances were the first of many during the CMT Artists of the Year night of hope and healing. The choice to use those two songs showed a perfect summation of what the festivies encouraged: to stand up to hate and help make a change in our world. CMT is encouraging people to visit CMTonecountry.com to find out how they can help.
“Given the devastation of Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria and the mass shootings in Las Vegas, we feel a commitment to our fans to address all of the tragedies not in one somber and solemn moment or segment, but rather devote the entire evening to uplifting the fans through high-spirited music,” said Frank Tanki, General Manager of CMT, previously. “Both ‘Rise Up’ and ‘Stand Up for Something’ are inspirational anthems that perfectly sum the message for the evening. The special has always been a place where artists from different genres can stand side-by-side, and now more than ever, we want to showcase the power of unity and resilience through music.”
Check out the full performance of “Stand Up For Something” above and “Rise Up” below.