WATCH: Kane Brown Honors Randy Travis with CMT Artists of the Year Performance

by Keeli Parkey

The 2021 CMT Artists of the Year Awards are bringing different generations of the country music community together for one grand celebration. One of the younger members of that community who brought down the house was Kane Brown.

The 27-year-old Chattanooga, Tennessee, native took the stage to perform his version of the Randy Travis song “Three Wooden Crosses.”

And, of course, Brown absolutely crushed his performance. What made his performance of the popular song even more poignant was that Randy Travis was in the audience to witness it. Travis was on hand as an honoree in Nashville, Tennessee, for the awards ceremony on Wednesday, Oct. 13. He received the Artist of a Lifetime Award from CMT.

As Kane Brown takes the stage to perform the popular song, it’s obvious that he knows that what he is doing is significant. There’s an air of respect and admiration about his performance.

You can watch him sing “Three Wooden Crosses” during the 2021 CMT Artists of the Year Awards below.

While he’s not Randy Travis – who is, after all – Kane Brown’s voice is a really good fit for “Three Wooden Crosses.”

And his rendition of the song certainly plays tribute to Travis. At the same time, Brown makes the song his own.

Kane Brown is more than capable of expressing the pain that is the focus of this song. It’s a song about the guilt someone who outlives their loved one can feel. The lyrics are simple, but they really hit your heart. And they really hit when singers as talented as Randy Travis and Kane Brown perform them.

“There are three wooden crosses on the right side of the highway / Why there’s not four of them, Heaven only knows / I guess it’s not what you take when you leave this world behind you / It’s what you leave behind you when you go,” the chorus of this moving and emotional song says.

Garth Brooks Presents Randy Travis with the CMT Artist of a Lifetime Award

Kane Brown wasn’t the only country music star to pay tribute to Randy Travis during the 2021 CMT Artists of the Year Awards. Country music icon Garth Brooks also joined in on the celebration. In fact, it was Brooks who presented Travis with the well-deserved honor.

When the time came for Travis to accept his award, his wife, Mary was there by his side. And she spoke for her husband – and she captured just how much the moment meant to her famous husband.

“As Randy would say, it’s a pretty good night for me,” she began. She also thanks performers like Kane Brown for their wonderful performances. She also shared that she and Randy Travis have high expectations for them.

“We fully expect to see you all up here one day – celebrating you as artists of a lifetime,” she also said.