Kellie Pickler may have started her career in the most modern of ways — becoming an overnight star on American Idol — but the North Carolina Native continues to prove she’s got the heart and performing chops of an old school country star.
Her recent Grand Ole Opry performance of the Tammy Wynette classic, “Stand By Your Man” was an almost spot-on rendition of the song that became a lightning rod soon after it was released in 1968. Pickler even channeled her hero via her Opry wardrobe, sporting a pink sheath and heels reminiscent of the glittering pink dress the late First Lady of Country — who co-wrote “Stand By Your Man” with Billy Sherrill —wore in a classic video of the tune.
“She is one of the reasons I fell in love with country music. I have sat on my bus and YouTube’d videos of her singing,” Pickler told Rolling Stone Country last year. “I just close my eyes and I feel like she’s right there with me, singing. I’m hanging on to every word. And I love that she just stood there and sang her songs.”
The singer-songwriter — who has publicly floated the idea of creating a Tammy Wynette Broadway musical — also paid homage to the late legend via “Where’s Tammy Wynette,” a standout song from her 2012 album, 100 Proof.
There’s no word yet on when Pickler’s next album will be out. She is currently busy filming a reality show for CMT that will document her career and home life with songwriter-husband Kyle Jacobs.
“We laugh so much,” the Dancing With the Stars winner says of what the cameras will capture. “We have Redneck Supper Club dinner parties at our house and grill out. I was a huge fan of Lucille Ball, and her funny shenanigans with Ethel that poor Ricky would have to get her out of. We want to play off that type of comedy — lighthearted but natural situations that I get into — and marry that with a Friends-type feel.”