The CMA Awards addressed a recent outbreak of feuding in Nashville and tweaked Miley Cyrus’ twerking, Julianne Hough’s blackface scandal and Obamacare’s registration woes during a playful opening skit featuring hosts Brad Paisley and Carrie Underwood Wednesday night.
Set to War’s “Why Can’t We Be Friends,” the perennial hosts referenced Zac Brown’s comments in September that Luke Bryan’s latest hit, “That’s My Kind of Night,” is “the worst song I’ve ever heard.”
“Luke Bryan and Zac Brown, nobody cares. You both make great records and you’re both millionaires!” they sang while Bryan and Brown hugged it out in the crowd. “Kanye hates Kimmel and the Jonas Brothers aren’t getting along. Sinead hates Miley and Tom Petty hates us all.”
Later in the song, the pair change their tune and decide feuds are cool, enlisting Kellie Pickler to hand out enemy assignments to various attendees. Kenny Rogers is now feuding with Paisley and, in an edgy move, Darius Rucker must trade venom with Julianne Hough, who received backlash last month by donning blackface at a Halloween party.
At some point, Paisley “twerked” his back — a second reference to Cyrus, who is Dolly Parton’s godchild — and needed to stop the song. Cue the joshing of the glitchy rollout for President Obama’s Affordable Care Act (ACA), better known as Obamacare.
“Hey, do you have that Obamacare?” Underwood asked her hurt co-host. “Oh it’s great! I started signing up last Thursday and I’m almost done. Let’s get you to the website and get you signed up. … This can’t be too hard right?”
Set to George Strait’s “Amarillo By Morning,” the new song took Obamacare’s wonky website to task and showed a willingness of producers to get overtly political, but in a way that appeared to safely cater to the traditionally right-leaning country music community.
Obamacare by morning
Why is this taking so long?
I’m going to wind up with hemorrhoids
If I sit here ’til dawn.
We’ll have cataracts and dementia
Oh this is getting on my last nerve.
Obamacare by morning
Over six people served.
Later, Underwood and Paisley parodied Cyrus and Robin Thicke’s MTV VMA performance of “Blurred Lines” with a new song called “Duck Blind.” They were joined by the Robertson family of “Duck Dynasty” fame. Viewers got an eyeful of Willie twerking on Underwood during the song.
Cyrus was brought up yet again later in the show by Paisley, who gave Taylor Swift props for making it in music “without humping a teddy bear or grinding against Beetlejuice,” a reference to Thicke’s striped outfit and other elements from the VMAs.