More than 30 country stars took part in February 8th’s uplifting tribute to traditional country icon Randy Travis at Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena. Following Garth Brooks’ lively take on Travis’ 1987 hit “Forever and Ever, Amen,” there was just one solo performer left – but Travis had plenty of help as the guest of honor led the entire crowd and his fellow artists in “Amazing Grace.” In recent years, the song has become synonymous with Travis’ personal struggles and slow recovery from a 2013 stroke.
Escorted to the stage by his wife, Mary, Travis did a quick “one-two” mic check to the delight of the audience, then began singing as a few of the night’s participants filed out to the stage, touching the singer on the shoulder in salute before taking their spot. The remaining acts then surrounded him as the crowd also joined the performers in song.
In the grand tradition of many country-music gatherings, the final tune performed was “Will the Circle Be Unbroken,” an even more fitting tribute to the most recent member of the Country Music Hall of Fame – those words are inscribed in the Hall of Fame rotunda above the more than 100 plaques depicting the institution’s celebrated members.
Randy Travis and wife Mary Travis discuss the special tribute concert held in honor of the country music legend. Watch here.