Last night was an emotional one for the country music community as they returned to the city of Las Vegas for the first time since the Route 91 Festival massacre that took the lives of 58 people and injured 851 others on October 1, 2017.
Last night the 53rd Annual ACM Awards took place at the MGM Grand Garden Arena and to kick off the show celebrating the best of country music over the last year, the stars came together for a touching tribute.
Jason Aldean, who was in the middle of his set when the shots rang out at the festival, along with Maren Morris, Thomas Rhett, Luke Bryan, and Miranda Lambert paid tribute to the victims, not through song, but just through words.
Watch the touching moment here:
While starting with a song may be the most predictable move, the ACMs decided to take a different approach. Jason Aldean explained:
“We thought about starting with a song, but it’s a lot bigger than a single song. It’s everything you’ll hear tonight — the songs that bring us to our feet, make you wanna pull someone close, or just live in the moment. Nothing can take that away from us.”
Miranda Lambert continues:
“On this night, our country community, the people here in Las Vegas and all of you at home are united through the healing power of music.”
Luke Bryan followed up with:
“For those of us who’ve experienced tragedy and unexpected loss, music helps us remember what really matters in life.”
Maren Morris added:
“Music does so much more than provide an escape from the pain. It inspires us, it soothes us and it makes us stronger.”
And Thomas Rhett:
“It gives us the chance to rejoice in what we have and tell us there’s always a reason to carry on."
Jason finished the opening monologue off with:
“With respect and love to our friends, family and fans, we celebrate the music tonight. America: This is your ACM Awards.”
Before the show, the ACM producers actually revealed that Jason himself helped plan the moment.
According to People, ACM producer Barry Adelman said:, “we took his lead, of what he felt, and the people around him, and he’s come up with an idea, and we worked closely with them, and we were happy with the way it’s coming together.”
I would say they did a GREAT job! A really special way to start the show and pay tribute to the victims.
Photo: Getty Images