The 2017 CMT Awards, held in Nashville on June 7, 2017, opened with a tribute to late rock star Gregg Allman, of the Allman Brothers Band. The tribute was a performance of the Allman Brothers 1970 hit “Midnight Rider” by country stars Jason Aldean, Darius Rucker, and Lady Antebellum’s Charles Kelley. The singers were joined by Allman Brothers guitarist Derek Trucks. Watch the attached video of the performance at the CMT Awards.
The rousing performance of "Midnight Rider," got the CMT Awards off to an energetic start. The awards show included performances by some of the top artists in coungty music, including Keith Urban, Carrie Underwood, Miranda Lambert, Blake Shelton, Lady Antebellum with Earth Wind and Fire, Florida Georgia Line with Teh Chainsmokers, and more.
Gregg Allman died at his home in Savannah, Georgia, on May 27, 2017, at the age of 69, due to complications of liver cancer. A statement on the Allman Brothers band website said that Allman “died peacefully at his home in Savannah. It went on to acknowledge that Allman has had many health problems over the years.
Allman was laid to rest near his brother Duane Allman and bandmate Berry Oakley, according to Rolling Stone. The rock icon’s funeral, held on June 3, was attended by his late wife Cher, President Jimmy Carter, and many of his Allman Brothers bandmates.
The Allman Brothers Band is a rock band, but they have influenced the modern generations of country artists, which was the reason for the tribute, according to CMT President Brian Phillips, in a statement on the CMT website. “Gregg Allman and The Allman Brothers Band helped create the bedrock foundation of modern Southern music. Over the weekend following his death, CMT’s most important artists reached out to see how we might honor Gregg at our Awards. This tribute will celebrate Gregg Allman’s soul, charisma, and enduring artistry. ‘The Road Goes on Forever,’ indeed.”