Travis took the stage at the historic Ryman Auditorium in Downtown Nashville, Tennessee, accompanied by his wife, Mary Davis. The husband and wife duo reflected on Brown’s friendship with Travis at the 16th annual ACM Honors, during which Brown earned the International Award for his music that reaches a global audience.
“Tonight, I’m going to tell you a story,” Davis said. “It’s a fascinating story about two men who have never really had a traditional conversation together. Kane came along a couple of years after Randy’s stroke, that’s when they first met. But somehow there was this love, and it’s never gone away, never diminished.”
Davis went on to say that Brown “paved his own path from rural Georgia to Nashville, Tennessee, and straight into the hearts of everyone worldwide. Tonight, we ‘Thank God’ for Katelyn and Kane” — Davis said, a clever nod to Brown’s award-winning duet with his wife, Katelyn Brown, who beamed with pride for her husband at the ACM Honors — “and your beautiful children. And true, it was Randy that wished you the best eight years ago, when he saw you on social media. But it has been you, Kane, that has given us your best in the last eight years, and we wish you all the success in the world.”
Travis officially announced Brown as the International Award recipient, prompting a powerful round of applause an standing ovation for the “Like I Love Country Music” superstar.
“This means the world to me,” Brown said, standing beside Travis as he accepted the honor. He said that as “a small kid from Fort Oglethorpe, Georgia, that the furthest part he ever traveled was to Florida, you know, country music let me in, and it’s a family and now I get to travel the world. …And, of course, (thank you to) my beautiful wife that’s been with me from the start. You’re Superwoman and I love you so much.”
Brown, who is getting ready to announce a tour and release a new song, is set to take the stage at the 2023 iHeartRadio Music Festival this weekend. The annual show will return to T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas on Friday (September 23) and Saturday (September 24). Other artists in the multi-genre lineup include Foo Fighters, Fall Out Boy, Kelly Clarkson, Lil Wayne, Lenny Kravitz, Miguel, Public Enemy, Sheryl Crow, Tim McGraw, Thirty Seconds to Mars, Travis Scott and more. For fans who can’t make it to Vegas, watch each night of the iHeartRadio Music Festival via Hulu, the Official Stream Destination. Performances will be livestreamed exclusively to Hulu subscribers at no additional cost, and highlights will be available on-demand on Hulu in the weeks following the event. The festival will also be broadcast live via iHeartRadio stations across the country across more than 150 markets, and on the iHeartRadio app.
The ACM Honors aired in a two-hour special on Monday evening (September 18), amiable next day on Hulu.