Country music legend Randy Travis attended a Zac Brown Band concert in Frisco, Texas as a fan recently, and the band honored him with an impromptu cover of his own country classic. The band told fans afterward that Travis is one of their all-time heroes and decided to tweak the setlist just for him.
“When you hear [Randy Travis] is coming to the show, you switch up the set list,” the band wrote on social media afterward, as reported by Taste of Country. “We’re gonna love you forever!”
To celebrate Travis at the show, the ZBB treated the Texas crowd to a harmonic-heavy cover of “Forever and Ever, Amen,” a country classic dating all the way back to 1987. The band posted footage of the moment from the crowd’s perspective as well as some candids of Brown and Travis hanging out backstage.
Zac Brown Band are currently on the road for their extensive 2022 “Out in the Middle Tour,” which will run through November. It’s the band’s first proper tour since COVID-19 derailed the live music industry completely in 2020.
When he’s not covering Randy Travis songs, Zac Brown likes to sing about connecting with the great outdoors
They also recently released the music video for their new song — the tour’s titular track — “Out in the Middle.” In it, bandmates enjoy everything about the country that makes rural living special.
“This video speaks to the essence of The Comeback album and our band,” Brown said of the video. “It has the pulsating sound and feeling your heart gets when you’re adventuring the great outdoors and your adrenaline starts pumping.”
He also said that country folks work hard, but also know how to have fun.
“They know how to be in the outdoors and that’s really what that song’s about to me,” he explained. “It’s just a tip of the hat to all the people that live out in the middle of nowhere and are happy being there.”
ZBB bassist John Driskell Hopkins announced he was diagnosed with ALS
Last Friday, the band also shared very difficult news: founding member John Driskell Hopkins has been diagnosed with ALS. Hopkins said his symptoms feel manageable and he hopes to continue touring with the band indefinitely.
“I have tough news to share, and my brothers and sister have gathered to support me,” Hopkins began in a social media video. “Over the past several years, I’ve noticed some balance issues, and some stiffness in my hands. After careful analysis by some of the country’s top neurologists, I have been diagnosed with ALS. Because my symptoms have been slow-progressing from the start, we believe they will continue to be slow progressing going forward. God willing, I plan to be rocking with these amazing people for many years to come.”
Zac Brown echoed Hopkins’ sentiment, thanking everyone for their support as they deal with an unknown future.
“The technology and research surrounding ALS treatments has been advancing, but we still don’t have a cure,” he said. “Thanks so much for your prayers and support in helping us cure ALS.”