The ACM Awards were held at three iconic music venues in Nashville on Wednesday night, the Ryman Auditorium, The Bluebird Café and the Grand Ole Opry. Artists performed from each of the three locations and Carrie Underwood was at the Opry to celebrate the famed institution's 95th anniversary, performing a medley honoring trailblazing female Opry members.
The medley included songs by Patsy Cline, Loretta Lynn, Barbara Mandrell, Martina McBride, Reba McEntire and Dolly Parton. Starting with "Crazy" by Cline, Underwood's medley continued with "You Ain't Woman Enough (To Take My Man)" by Lynn; "I Was Country When Country Wasn't Cool" by Mandrell; "Why’d You Come in Here Lookin’ Like That" by Parton; "The Night the Lights Went Out in Georgia" by McEntire; and an emotional rendition of "Broken Wing" by McBride.
Underwood was inducted into the Opry in 2008, two and a half years after she released her debut album and three years after her very first performance at the Opry, which came two weeks after she won American Idol in 2005. She was surprised by the invitation by Randy Travis after performing Travis' "I Told You So" on the Opry stage and tearfully accepted the honor, joking "Let me think about it" before giving an emphatic "Yes!" Three months later in May, she was inducted by Garth Brooks, and to date, she has performed on the famed stage over 100 times.
"The induction award they gave me says, 'Hey, you're a part of the family,'" Underwood said in a quote on the Opry's website. "It means a lot to me because it’s the heart of country music, the church, the sacred place, the super-elite club that says you love this music."
The Oklahoma native most recently performed on the show earlier this month, when she shared the stage with Brad Paisley. The duo performed a number of their own songs and several duets including "Whiskey Lullaby," "Louisiana Woman, Mississippi Man" and their own collaboration, "Remind Me."
Wednesday night's ACM Awards performance was Underwood's second of the night, as she opened the show along with her fellow Entertainer of the Year Nominees Luke Bryan, Eric Church, Luke Combs and Thomas Rhett, each of whom performed a medley of their greatest hits.