Carly Pearce reflects on her powerful Judds tribute – ‘One of the most moving experiences I’ve ever had in my life’
Carly Pearce gave a powerful performance at the Country Music Hall of Fame medal ceremony on May 1. She sang a stunning tribute to the Judds, who were among the night’s inductees.
Just a day before the ceremony, Noami Judd’s daughters announced his sudden passing on social media. Since then, multiple reports have called his death a suicide.
At the request of the Judd family, the Hall continued the induction ceremony, which also included the late Ray Charles and musicians Eddie Bayer and Pete Drake. Ashley and Wynonna Judd tearfully accepted the honor on their mother’s behalf.
Pearce delivered a dark rendition of the duo’s 1986 hit “Grandpa (Tell Me ‘Bout the Good Old Days)”. The singer recounted the emotional evening and The Judd’s legacy in the days following the event in an Instagram post.
“Last night was one of the most moving experiences I’ve ever had in my life…singing ‘Grandpa’ in light of such a tragic loss, looking Naomi’s beautiful daughters in the eye . I’m forever grateful and sending Wynonna and Ashley all my love. Long live the Judds,” Pearce wrote.
In an interview with 99.5 WYCD (Detroit), she added, “Last night I had the honor of being a surprise musical guest and performing ‘Grandpa’ for Wynonna and Ashley. I knew I was doing this a few months ago, but I had no idea what was going to happen. I don’t understand what it’s like to lose your mother, and to lose your mother a few hours before this celebration, and to hear these girls talking, and to feel the heaviness in the room, it was so hard to describe. They were so sorry that their mother couldn’t stay there, but they knew how much it meant to her.
Other artists who paid tribute to the Judds during the Sunday night ceremony included Gillian Welch and David Rawlings singing “Young Love (Strong Love)” and Timmy Simms performing “Love Can Build a Bridge.” Garth Brooks, Trisha Yearwood, Vince Gill, The War and Treaty, Bettye LaVette and others paid tribute to the other winners.
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