It’s been 32 years since the Judds released their final album Love Can Build a Bridge, and more than 20 years since they performed on a nationally televised awards show. So when the mother-daughter duo performed on the 2022 CMT Music Awards broadcast on Monday (April 11) night, it was both a glorious return and a welcome comeback.
After a heartfelt introduction from superfan Kacey Musgraves, the cameras cut to the duo performing outside under the stars. Naomi and Wynonna sang their 1990 single “Love Can Build a Bridge,” a top five hit on the Hot Country Songs chart. They were joined by a gospel choir that helped elevate the message and theatrics of the unification anthem to beautiful, warm heights.
“Love Can Build a Bridge” came at a tough time for the duo; mother Naomi’s health forced her to retire in 1990 despite the Judds’ ongoing success. Performed in 2022, in the midst of an overseas war and a divided nation, the song arguably takes on new and even deeper meanings.
The Judds will be inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in May. The beloved family duo will also embark on a farewell tour this year, with special guest Martina McBride, kicking off Sept. 30 in Grand Rapids, Mich., and wrapping Oct. 28 in Nashville. The Judds, one of the most legendary duos in the history of the genre, have won five Grammys and earned 14 No. 1 hits on the Hot Country Songs chart.