Martina McBride and Train Meet at ‘Crossroads’
A brand-new installment of 'CMT Crossroads' premieres November 20 on Country Music Television. This time, rockers Train roll into Music City to share the stage with Martina McBride for the hit concert series, which pairs together country music artists with musicians from other genres. The one-hour show boasts a full hour of fan favorites from both of the Grammy winning stars. The Boot attended the November 6 episode taping at Nashville's Rocketown venue, just after sitting down with both the country songbird and Train lead singer Pat Monahan for a candid chat.
Martina and Pat sounded like they'd been singing together for years, as they effortlessly swapped lines on their respective hits. One of the night's highlights was their show-stopping performance of Martina's smash, 'A Broken Wing.' Pat gave the country ballad a red-hot rock treatment, and Martina was right on point as they brought down the house with their soulful collaboration. Check out a sneak preview of that performance here.
"I wish you had a big hit that we could do, or something," Pat jokingly said to Martina after their roaring standing ovation.
There were plenty of hits to pass around from both sides. The two super acts kept the audience on their feet with Train's chart-toppers, 'Hey Soul Sister,' and 'Drops of Jupiter,' and Martina's 'Wrong Baby Wrong'. There was no question that Pat was happy to be making music with Martina. The Pennsylvania native smiled from ear to ear the entire time he was on stage with the country powerhouse. He even entertained the audience in between songs with some humorous dance moves and a few off-the-cuff jokes, both of which got plenty of laughs from the invitation-only crowd.
Pat was serious about being there though. Halfway through the set, he voiced his gratitude to Martina from the stage. "We, as Train, have been through a lot of weird ups and downs in our lives," the 41-year old singer admitted. "This is a new beginning for us. We're so grateful and I just want to say how much fun we're having. We had forgotten for so long that this is what it's supposed to be like. I'll never forget this moment right now that you are giving us."
Just minutes before show time, The Boot caught up with Martina and Pat backstage for an exclusive interview.
How did your 'Crossroads' pairing come about?
Martina: One thing we've talked about for the past couple of days is how we admire each other as singers. I love to sing with great singers. So, when this opportunity came up to me, I was thrilled because I just couldn't wait to get on stage and sing Train songs and actually sing them with Pat. Our voices have blended so well. You never know until you get on stage how it's going to sound, even though you think it's going to sound a certain way. It's just better than anything I expected.
Pat: I'm a big fan of Martina's. I think that with these situations of putting two very different styles together you realize, once you're actually together, that it's not different at all. Our genre of music may be a little bit different, but she's a great singer and that's what I've always wanted to be is a great singer. I also want the songs to be great too, and all of her songs really are moving. Whether they're songs from the first phase of her career or just recently. I love the four songs of hers that we're doing tonight. There are some notes I have to hit tonight that are in the key of like "L", so it's really thrilling for me and Train.
Are there any songs in particular that you're looking forward to performing together?
Martina: All of them!
Pat: There are some moments in each of your songs where I feel like I'm doing a good job, like when I'm harmonizing with you and I'm like that's awesome. But then, 'Calling All Angels' and 'Marry Me', which are Train songs, Martina makes them so much better than they have ever been. It's kind of upsetting that she wasn't in the recording studio at the time. So, that's the good and the bad of it.
Both of you are used to playing for huge audiences on tour. How do you feel about tonight's concert taping being for a smaller crowd in such an intimate setting?
Martina: I love playing where you can really see everybody. It becomes a different kind of experience and you can just talk and hang out.
Pat: These [smaller crowds] are always a little more difficult settings for me, because in a larger setting there's a group personality. If there's thousands of people, it's either a really exciting personality or it's mediocre, you know it's a Monday night, whatever. In this one, we'll be able to see everyone's individual personality. So, if you yawn and I catch you, I'm all of the sudden super taking it personally! [laughs] So, please just don't yawn. That's all I'm asking. You can laugh. You can talk on your cell phone. It's all good. Just don't yawn!
'CMT Crossroads: Train and Martina McBride' premieres Saturday, November 20 at 8:00 PM ET. This will mark Martina's second time appearing on the hit CMT series. She was first paired with Pat Benatar back in 2003.