Lifestyle & Human Interest

Country Star Thomas Rhett Leads Entire Crowd in Prayer During Emotional CMT Awards


It was an emotional night for the country artists who participated in the 2019 CMT Artists of the Year awards ceremony at Schermerhorn Symphony Center in Nashville, Tennessee.

The night was especially sorrowful for Kane Brown, who is grieving the death of his band’s drummer, 27-year-old Kenny Dixon, who died in a car crash just days before the awards ceremony.

Brown could not hold back the tears as he stood on stage to accept his CMT Artist of the Year award, “Today” reported.

“I want to dedicate this to my drummer Kenny,” Brown said in an emotional voice. “People didn’t think we would make it.”

“He was with me the whole time. He was so supportive of me,” the country star continued. “I love you, man. I miss you. The band misses you.”

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Brown’s emotional speech weighed heavily on the hearts of those in the tight-knit country music community. When musician Thomas Rhett took the stage to accept his award, he took the opportunity to say a prayer for everyone who was missing Dixon.

“I just want to lift up Kane and his family,” Rhett said from the podium. “And I want to lift up his drummer and their family. I don’t know if this is very conventional, but can I just pray, really fast? Is it OK with everybody?”

Head bowed, Rhett began an impromptu prayer on live television.

“Father God, we love you so much,” Rhett began. “Loss is something that we can’t comprehend and so right now I pray that you would be with Kane and his family and his drummer Kenny and his family and bring them peace that only You know how to bring somebody.

“Thank you for this night. God bless country music. We love you Jesus, and in your name, we pray, Amen,” Rhett concluded.

The audience was moved by Rhett’s prayer, including country music legend Reba McEntire.

McEntire was present to accept the Artist of a Lifetime award, and acknowledged Rhett’s courageous prayer, saying the act took “guts.”

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McEntire is no stranger to the pain of losing a band member. She lost eight members of her band in an airplane crash in 1991, able to empathize with her colleague’s deep sorrow over Dixon’s death.

McEntire felt the prayer was entirely appropriate, saying, “That’s what we need in this world, a little more God.”

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A graduate of Grand Canyon University, Kim Davis has been writing for The Western Journal since 2015, focusing on lifestyle stories.
Kim Davis began writing for The Western Journal in 2015. Her primary topics cover family, faith, and women. She has experience as a copy editor for the online publication Thoughtful Women. Kim worked as an arts administrator for The Phoenix Symphony, writing music education curriculum and leading community engagement programs throughout the region. She holds a degree in music education from Grand Canyon University with a minor in eating tacos.
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