The country world is becoming a soft one, but when you add back its grit and intensity, you get one amazing, show-stealing rock ‘n’ roll performance.
Queen rocker Lzzy Hale, arising from hard-rock band Halestorm, graced the CMT Awards stage in Nashville, Tennessee with Eric Church last Thursday. Performing one of Church’s lesser-known songs “That’s Damn Rock & Roll,” many country fans were confused by Church’s song choice. But, that choice proved to be a smart one.
Church tells Fox News, “I think it’s an opportunity to do one thing that you’re not normally going to do and you let it live in that space forever.” He continues, “That’s what I like about them. You can do it one time and it will get the maximum amount of eyes and it will live as that one show’s performance forever. It makes sense to do something different.”
What I particularly love about the country world is that you’re always getting new surprises entering it. You find dozens of new artists coming from the pop-rock, folk-pop, indie, hard-rock, metal worlds somehow colliding into country bringing it that extra dose of awesomeness.
As a long-time fan of Hale now, as she is definitely one of the few show-stealing front women of today who totally owns herself and her music, her debut to the country world is definitely a sweet one.
Billboard calls the performance “one of the highlights of the evening” and USA Today notes it as one of the “five best highlights from the CMT Awards.”
Hale tells Fox News, “Honestly I think that the industry overall–the rock industry, country, whatever genre you take a fancy to–I think it needs more people like [Church]. It needs more people taking risks and being, for lack of a better term, a badass and not necessarily going straight by the rules.”
Church and Hale’s performance, as you can see, brought the energy back to the country crowd with Hale’s voice politely supporting Church’s, but delivering an even stronger performance than Church himself. With a standing ovation from the crowd, this hard-rock mashup was killer.
Hale, as an avid supporter and admirer of the rock world, is currently working on the third record for Halestorm after 20-months of touring with the band’s 2012 album The Strange Case Of…. Perhaps one of my favorites, however, is Halestorm’s exclusive ReAniMate and ReAniMate 2.0 EPs, in which the band covers classic-rock songs with the likes of Fleetwood Mac, Heart, AC/DC and Daft Punk.
It’s safe to say that Hale has gained a lot of new fans from the country world that night.
And, as she notes with a laugh, “I’m kind of what my country friends call a rock ambassador.”