While last night’s CMT Awards in Nashville, TN were unsurprisingly dominated by country artists, one of the night’s highlight moments came from an artist well outside the country world: award-winning singer/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist H.E.R.
As one of the night’s featured performances, H.E.R., real name Gabriella Wilson, took the stage with alt-country staple and CMT “Video of the Year” nominee Chris Stapleton for a run through the former’s soulful slow-burn, “Hold On”. The runaway hit was initially premiered last fall during H.E.R.’s musical guest appearance on Saturday Night Live.
Both H.E.R. and Stapleton are known for their highly emotive voices and guitar chops, and both artists got their share of the spotlight on the live “Hold On” duet at the CMT Awards, trading vocals and guitar licks with ease.
Watch H.E.R. and Chris Stapleton duet on “Hold On” at the 2021 CMT Awards below.
H.E.R. w/ Chris Stapleton – “Hold On” – CMT Awards 2021
While the performance may have been booked with the intention of turning country fans on to something new—as Variety notes, Stapleton previously reached across genre boundaries for a Justin Timberlake collab at the CMA Awards in 2015—H.E.R.’s recent run of high-profile wins and appearances likely ensured that fans of any genre of music already recognized her when she took the CMT stage.
From big wins at the Academy Awards (“Best Original Song” for “Fight For You”) and the Grammy Awards (“Song of the Year” for “I Can’t Breathe”) to an “America The Beautiful” performance at the Super Bowl and a sit-in with D’Angelo at the iconic Apollo Theater in Harlem, 2021 is shaping up to be another watershed year for the young star.
This summer, she’ll perform a number of high-profile festival dates and other shows including a pair of orchestral shows with the L.A. Philharmonic at Hollywood Bowl in August.
On Thursday, H.E.R. announced the coming release of her latest album, Back of My Mind, due out on June 18th. The album’s first single, “We Made It”, will arrive on streaming services this Friday, June 11th.
Chris Stapleton also has big plans for the rest of 2021. Starting in July, he’ll head out on his 2021–2022 Great American Road Show tour featuring stops in major markets around the country and a slew of special guests including Elle King, Margo Price, Mavis Staples, The Highwomen, The Marcus King Band, Willie Nelson, Yola, and more.
For a full list of upcoming Chris Stapleton tour dates, head here.
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