CMT Awards 2024 - Toby Keith Performance

Brooks & Dunn, Lainey Wilson, Sammy Hagar and More Pay All-Star Tribute to Toby Keith

April 8, 2024 2:47 am GMT

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The CMT Music Awards are always filled with big wins and even bigger performances, but Sunday night's (April 7) ceremony bore witness to one of its greatest showcases yet: an all-star tribute to Toby Keith.

Baseball great Roger Clemens was the first to take the stage in honor of the legend and his dear friend, who passed on Feb. 5 following a lengthy battle with cancer. An impassioned Clemens shared with the crowd his memories of Keith and their equal appreciation for the great state of Texas.

Brooks & Dunn were the first to open the musical homage, performing Keith's classic 'Should've Been a Cowboy'. As they played, the camera panned over the crowd, which included Keith's three children – Krystal, Stelen, and Shelley – who sang along proudly to their father's enduring legacy.

Rock legend Sammy Hagar took the spotlight after, remembering the wild nights he and the late country star spent together in Cabo San Lucas at Hagar's Cabo Wabo Cantina. He then broke into a raucous rendition of Keith's good-timing hit, 'I Love This Bar'.

The energy in the room was palpable, the camera consistently grazing over an elated audience as the blistering song played.

Lukas Nelson and Riley Green followed to say their own words about the great Keith before Lainey Wilson erupted into his fan-favorite 'How Do You Like Me Now', a horn-flecked rendition that kept the crowd dancing.

All of the performers were backed by Keith's longtime band, making for the perfect farewell to the icon. As the tribute came to a close, Clemens came back on stage for a few more tear-filled words to Keith, his children and his widow.

As red solo cups were raised throughout the arena, the homage ended with these solemn words: "Whiskey for my men and beer for my horses".

Elsewhere during the star-studded evening, the 2024 CMT Awards enjoyed captivating performances from Kelsea Ballerini, who did double duty as the night's sole host, as well as Parker McCollum & Brittney Spencer, Trisha Yearwood, Bailey Zimmerman and more.

For more of Holler's 2024 CMT Award coverage, see below:

Written by Alli Patton
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