Stapleton was on Jimmy Kimmel Live‘s Thursday episode to promote his new album Starting Over. Kimmel, who is a big fan of Stapleton’s music, also said he asked the singer/songwriter to appear and perform on the show for Kimmel’s birthday.
Kimmel wanted to know how Stapleton’s famous performance with Timberlake at the 2015 CMA Awards came to be. Stapleton said the performance was his wife and band-mate Morgane’s idea.
“She’s really good at pushing me to go ‘you should do this’ or you should call such and such and ask him for a favor. So, I called Justin and asked him for a favor,” he said.
After joking that he was glad to help Timberlake’s career, Stapleton explained that the fallout from that performance was strange.
“It was drastic,” he said. “Sold out shows. Dudes driving from North Carolina into my driveway to say ‘hi’ to me.”
Stapleton recently told NPR that while he was excited for the attention after that performance, it was also “unnerving.” But trying to escape such a surreal experience led to the song Nashville, TN on his new album.
“[At my house,] the bus starts coming by with tourists twice a day — you know, 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. — and you’re out in the front yard trying to kick a ball, he said. “A dude shows up in your driveway from North Carolina because he hunted you down someway. No one has ever done anything malicious to me, but it’s a little unnerving when you spend 38 years of your life in relative anonymity. We rented a house down the street, just to get away from the bus and figure out where we were gonna go. But in that rental house, 1 a.m., [this] song comes out.