Garth Brooks offered the final musical performance of President Joe Biden’s inauguration on Wednesday, delivering an a capella rendition of the classic hymn, “Amazing Grace.”
Clad in a dark shirt and jacket, the seven-time CMA Entertainer of the Year wore his signature cowboy hat as he walked to the podium, but removed it before he began to sing. Taking his initial pitch from a trumpet, Garth launched into what are traditionally considered the first and last verses of the John Newton standard, encouraging everyone both at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C. and watching at home to join him as he reprised the initial stanza.
Though his performance was stellar, it’s perhaps his exit that most will remember, as Garth couldn’t help but display his innate warmth and humanity. The Oklahoma native began by shaking hands with newly-inaugurated President Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris and former Vice President Mike Pence. As he continued to recede through the audience, Garth forgot all social-distancing, stopping to hug the Obamas, Clintons and more, as the former presidents seemed to recognize they were seeing their friend.
Previously, Garth performed his anthem “We Shall Be Free” at the 2008 first inauguration of President Barack Obama, and has shown up for every president since Jimmy Carter in some capacity, with the exception of Ronald Reagan.
Today, Garth followed the same convention as fellow superstars Lady Gaga and Jennifer Lopez, forsaking their own songs for traditional fare, with Lady Gaga performing the national anthem, and J-Lo offering a medley of “This Land Is Your Land” and “America the Beautiful.”
Tonight, Tim McGraw and Florida Georgia Line’s Tyler Hubbard continue country’s inaugural contributions, as they deliver their new hit “Undivided” on the Celebrating America special, which begins airing at 8:30 p.m. ET on all the major networks.
By Stephen Hubbard
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