If ACM Awards showrunners had gone with their original plan, it would have been Garth Brooks singing during the 2020 show's in memoriam segment. The country superstar, however, put a different performance into motion.

"We started with the idea of individual performances honoring Kenny Rogers, Charlie Daniels and Joe Diffie, then I said, folks, I think this is a mistake. We've lost so many people," ACM Executive Producer RAC Clark shares in Country Aircheck. "That's when I turned to the folks at the Academy [of Country Music] and said, you've got to curate this list."

Once Clark and his team settled on that plan, they approached Brooks about singing his early-'90s megahit "The Dance" to soundtrack the somber moment. Brooks had a different idea.

"He responded, 'Listen to Trisha's song ['I'll Carry You Home,']'" Clark recalls. "Of course, it was so appropriate. Plus, I knew she could do the setup from a hosting perspective."

Yearwood's performance from an empty Grand Ole Opry House wound up being the perfect touching moment. In addition to Rogers, Daniels and Diffie, John Prine and many more were honored during the segment.

Caitlyn Smith, Gordie Sampson and Troy Verges co-wrote "I'll Carry You Home," which appears on Yearwood's 2019 album Every Girl.

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