Two music legends united in Austin on Thursday (Feb. 16), when Bruce Springsteen brought his tour to the city’s Moody Center.
Before Springsteen and the E Street Band launched into their 27-song set, Country Music Hall of Famer George Strait, clad in his signature jeans and cowboy hat, made an unexpected appearance as he strolled on stage to welcome Springsteen to Austin. The two superstars hugged, and The Boss stepped back as Strait made his introduction.
“Austin, Texas, it’s my honor tonight to introduce to you a band that really needs no introduction, right?” Strait said, eliciting applause from the crowd. “Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band!”
As the attendees cheered, Strait and Springsteen embraced again. The country star then waved to the crowd and exited the stage. He did not perform during his appearance, though he does have history with the Moody Center, having helped open the venue with his show on April 30, 2022, alongside Willie Nelson and the Randy Rogers Band.
Springsteen has been selling out venues across the country on his current tour, and recently added 18 new cities to the trek, including stops in Chicago, Baltimore, Pittsburgh, Toronto and San Francisco. The tour launched Feb. 1 with a show in Tampa, Fla., which marked Springsteen and the E Street Band’s first North American show in seven years.
Meanwhile, though Strait is known for being a torchbearer of traditional country music, with 44 No. 1 hits on Billboard‘s Hot Country Songs chart, in addition to 17 total CMA Awards wins to his credit (including three CMA entertainer of the year trophies), the lifelong Texan is also known for tipping his hat to rock classics. He’s previously covered Tom Petty’s “You Wreck Me” (included on Petty’s 1994 album Wildflowers) in concert.
Watch Strait’s introduction below: