As if Brandi Carlile‘s “The Joke” couldn’t be any more powerful, the singer sang the dynamic tune with just a piano and some candles.
Carlile was one of the many country stars to perform during ACM Presents: Our Country on Sunday night (April 5), but she was one of the only to tackle their song with a piano — and one that’s 100 years old, at that. Though she only performed the first verse and chorus of the track, one line from the short-but-sweet performance particularly stood out: “Don’t ever let them steal your joy/ And your gentle ways, to keep ’em from running wild.”
While her vocals soared over the chilling keys, Carlile’s reminder prior to the song was arguably the most impactful part of her performance. “In these difficult and confusing times,” she said, remember: “There’s a time we’ll all be smiling and laughing together again.”
Lady Antebellum, Luke Bryan, Dierks Bentley, Miranda Lambert and several other country stars sent similar messages of hope during the two-hour special, which aired on CBS.
dick clark productions and Billboard share a parent company, Valence Media.