The 59th Academy of Country Music Awards last night (5/16) was like it has been in years past: Full of great performances. Country stars often use award shows to debut new music to the world.  

Post Malone

Post Malone played some of his new brand of country music, and his performance was country to the core. When Reba joined him to sing a little after his performance, it was definitely a show highlight. 

Thomas Rhett

Thomas Rhett performed his new love song, “Beautiful As You,” for the first time ever. The high-energy anthem represents the first taste of Thomas’s upcoming seventh studio album, which will be released on August 23. 

He said of the new song, “This is an anthem for everybody who feels like they out-kicked their coverage. There was one day a couple years back when I was looking at my wife, and I was like, ‘Why in the world did you choose me?'”

Thomas continued, “I get to be with someone who could easily be on the cover of a magazine, and I get to see her in all her forms – a partner, a mother, a friend, even a philanthropist. I just feel like I’ve got a first-row seat at almost perfection, if you will. And like the song says, ‘Seriously, what is somebody as amazing as you doing with somebody like me?'”

Blake and Gwen

Blake Shelton and Gwen Stefani performed their new song “Purple Irises” for the first time on an award show and brought the house to their feet. The song was recorded in Nashville at Smokestack Studios early this year and was produced by Scott Hendricks.

Blake said of the new song when it was released in February, “We love this song so much. It’s a song Gwen wrote with a couple of friends of hers, and I fell in love with it the first time I heard it. She knew there was something different about it and asked me to come in and sing with her. My longtime producer, Scott Hendricks, produced it, and Gwen’s been wanting to work with him for a long time now, and it’s turned into this really cool and different song that can live anywhere.”

Stefani added, “‘Purple Irises’ is a song that comes from the idea that when you plant something, you are planting hope and watching love grow. Weathering all the different seasons of growth. We are in this together; we planted the seeds together, and we are growing together.”

As we recap all the wonderful performances from the 59th Annual ACM Awards, we gathered what we believe are the top four performances of the big night. 

RELATED: 2024 ACM Winners List – Updated in Real Time

  • Jason Aldean's Tribute To Toby Keith - "Should've Been A Cowboy"

    There have been a few award show tributes to Toby Keth since his death in February, but somehow this one somber and emotional performance from his friend Jason Aldean was extra special, as he sang Toby’s biggest hit with a new vibe and tone. Watching Keith’s family and his wife, Trica, wipe tears away throughout the performance was especially touching.

  • Jelly Roll - "Liar"

    This was a great way to hear some of the new music Jelly Roll has been working on, which he plans to release as soon as he can. Jelly performed his new song “Liar” to perfection and brought the ACM crowd to their feet. His passion and exciting award show performance have helped his star shine, and this one was another great performance from this infectious new superstar.

  • Lainey Wilson - "God Blessed Texas" & "Hang Tight Honey"

    What a great way to kick off the show with a performance from its biggest star: Lainey Wilson. Lainey was epic, singing a Texas classic to the Texas crowd, then walking through the crowd, placing her red cowboy hat on her mother’s head, and then taking center stage to sing her new song, “Hang Tight Honey.” It was also nice to see her hair as she performed without her signature hat. 

  • Chris Stapleton and Dua Lipa - "I'm In Love With You"

    When Chris Stapleton performs on an award show, it will be something great and the talk of the show the next morning. This year’s performance with a surprise guest, country music lover Dua Lipa, was one for the books. Her stunning vocals, matched with his on this stirring love song, were once again the highlight of the ACM Awards. 

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