Dubbed "The Life & Songs of Kris Kristofferson," last night's all-star concert in Nashville honored the prolific work of the country music renaissance man. Kristofferson pals like Willie Nelson, Emmylou Harris and Rosanne Cash all performed his songs, along with artists inspired by the songwriter, from Eric Church to Jack Ingram. Here's some of the evening's most evocative photos, from both backstage and onstage.
Old pals Willie Nelson and Kris Kristofferson teamed up to sing "Sunday Morning Comin' Down."
Reba McEntire coaxed Kristofferson out of his side-stage seat to join in on "Me and Bobby McGee."
Willie Nelson, one of Kristofferson's Highwaymen comrades, sang Kristofferson's song "Living Legend" from 1978.
Shooter Jennings, Willie Nelson, Kristofferson and Jamey Johnson re-created the Highwaymen, singing the supergroup's signature song, written by Jimmy Webb.
Oscar winner Kevin Spacey was in attendance for the Kristofferson tribute concert, mingling with artists like Eric Church backstage.
Emmylou Harris and Rodney Crowell performed "Chase the Feeling," which Kristofferson cut for his 2006 This Old Road album.
Jamey Johnson and Alison Krauss duetted on Kristofferson's often-covered "For the Good Times."
For her rendition of "Lovin' Her Was Easier," Rosanne Cash made the song gender specific, singing "loving him was easier/than anything I'll ever do again."
Kristofferson led an all-star finale, featuring Lady Antebellum and Willie Nelson, through "Why Me Lord."
Charles Kelley, Hillary Scott and Dave Haywood of Lady Antebellum harmonized on "Help Me Make It Through the Night."
Jennifer Nettles delivered a soaring, vocally dynamic take on "Worth Fighting For," earning a standing ovation.
Eric Church prefaced his solo acoustic performance of "To Beat the Devil" by saying, "I wouldn't be here if it weren't for this song and for Kris Kristofferson."
Jack Ingram tore through "Jesus Was a Capricorn" with ferocious defiance.
Bocephus sang "If You Don't Like Hank Williams," eating up the stage with grand gestures and an unconventional vocal phrasing.
With Kristofferson looking on, Reba McEntire sang "Me and Bobby McGee."
Darius Rucker's politically charged "Under the Gun" captured the energy of Kristofferson's protest song and was one of the most surprising performances of the night.
Guitarist Audley Freed, drummer Fred Eltringham and musical director Don Was backed up Lee Ann Womack on her version of "Nobody Wins."
Jessi Colter, whose late husband Waylon Jennings teamed up with Kristofferson in the Highwaymen, took to the piano to sing "The Captive."
Ryan Bingham, who won an Academy Award for his Crazy Heart song "The Weary Kind" in 2010, performed Kristofferson's "The Taker."
As he did for his 2010 Up on the Ridge album, Dierks Bentley enlisted the Travelin' McCourys for his performance, singing Kristofferson's "From the Bottle to the Bottom."
Husband-and-wife songwriting duo Jon Randall and Jessi Alexander sang their song "Kristofferson," with help from Larry Gatlin," to open the evening.
Martina McBride sang "Here Comes That Rainbow Again," a Kristofferson composition that Johnny Cash cut for his 1985 album Rainbow.
Shooter Jennings, posing backstage with his mother Jessi Colter, sang his father Waylon's verse in "Highwayman," performing the Highwaymen's signature song with Willie Nelson, Jamey Johnson and Kristofferson himself.
Kristofferson, with wife Lisa Meyers, whistled his approval for the performances from a chair on the side of the stage.
Kris Kristofferson, the guest of honor at a tribute concert honoring his life and music, posed backstage prior to the event at the Bridgestone Arena in Nashville.