When the Academy of Country Music (ACM) threw country music duo Brooks & Dunn a televised retirement party in 2010 titled The Last Rodeo, a wide range of country singers dropped by the Bridgestone Arena to pay their respects. Among them was a bespectacled George Strait. A standout performer in a star-studded crowd and the king of country music, Strait is among the few peers with the showmanship and iconic look of Kix Brooks and the singing talent of Ronnie Dunn. The Texas native wowed both Brooks and Dunn with his upbeat performance of the 1991 line dancing classic “Boot Scootin’ Boogie.”
Strait definitely doesn’t have to be asked twice to “Play Something Country” while whipping a captive crowd into a boot-stompin’ frenzy. Brooks chips in on harmonica while Dunn has to laugh to keep from crying over this once-in-a-lifetime performance. It’s a special moment for fans of ’90s country, featuring three true country rebels.
Other memorable clips from that night’s broadcast include Kenny Chesney’s cover of “You’re Gonna Miss Me When I’m Gone,” Reba McEntire’s fiery take on “Indian Summer,” Jason Aldean’s interpretation of “How Long Gone,” Brad Paisley’s honky-tonk rendition of “My Next Broken Heart,” Tim McGraw’s incredible performance of “That Ain’t No Way to Go” and a handful of additional tributes to one of country music’s most decorated duos.
The evening celebrated the group’s first retirement and its 20th anniversary as mainstream hit-makers. They’ve reunited a couple of times since then, for a 2014 run of Las Vegas dates and to participate in the 50th CMA Awards’ star-studded “Forever Country” medley.
In all, the evening demonstrated how Brooks & Dunn earned the upmost respect of peers like Alan Jackson and Clay Walker while influencing the fast-driving, pop-friendly sound of everyone from Rascal Flatts and Keith Urban to Eric Church and Taylor Swift.
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