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Watch Derek Trucks Join Country Stars for CMT Awards Tribute to Gregg Allman

2017 CMT Music Awards - Show
Mike Coppola, Getty Images

On a night reserved for honoring their own, some of country music’s biggest stars came together to pay tribute to a dearly departed star whose work has had a major impact on the genre.

This year’s CMT Awards opened with a special number in honor of Gregg Allman, featuring Jason Aldean, Darius Rucker and Charles Kelley of Lady Antebellum taking the stage together for a performance of the Allman Brothers Band classic “Midnight Rider.”

“This is for the one and only Gregg Allman,” Aldean told the crowd during the song, which found him trading off lead vocal duties with Rucker and Kelley. The trio were joined partway through the performance by guitarist and second-generation Allmans vet Derek Trucks.

You can watch the performance below.

As Rolling Stone notes, “Midnight Rider” — a hit single from the Allmans’ Idlewild South LP — has emerged as a popular choice for country artists paying tribute to Allman in the days since his death, part of a long tradition of country “Rider” covers dating back to shortly after the song’s initial release. Kelley, for one, performed it with Lady Antebellum the weekend after Allman’s death.

Trucks’ CMT Awards appearance marked the second time in recent days that a member of Allman’s inner musical circle paid tribute to him from the stage. As previously reported, a number of Allman Brothers Band veterans and associates got together to jam after his memorial service, gathering on stage at the Big House in Macon for a performance of some of the band’s classics.

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