Kelly Clarkson’s Emotional Cover Song of “The Dance” Brings Garth Brooks To Tears
Kelly Clarkson admits that she experienced feelings of guilt and humiliation during the difficult time of her divorce. She wanted to find a resolution, but she couldn’t identify the feelings that would get her there. But that’s exactly what she found with Garth Brooks’ iconic song “The Dance.”
The song just popped up on her playlist at the right time that she needed it the most. This song which portrays the end of a relationship was released in 1990 and has become one of Garth Brooks’ most recognizable masterpieces.
When Garth made an appearance on Kelly’s talk show back in 2020, Kelly had the opportunity to personally convey to him how much “The Dance” means to her and how it was fundamental in helping her in overcoming a particularly challenging period in her life, her divorce with ex-husband Brandon Blackstock.
At the time, she told him, “I couldn’t quite nail down the feeling. I was like, well… you don’t want to crap on it. Like you don’t want to say that didn’t count or matter, but you don’t know what to put in it because it didn’t work out how you wanted.
And so, anyway, I kid you not, I was listening to my playlist, and ‘The Dance’ came on and I was like, ‘No, that’s the thing. That’s it. ’”
Clarkson also revealed that she even wrote a song inspired by “The Dance” for her ninth studio album. The 39-year-old star sang the tag of the unreleased track, “Even though my heart is broken, it was worth the dance anyway.”
Because of this, it was only fitting that when Garth was recently honored at the 43rd Kennedy Center Honors, it was Kelly who came onstage to sing for him. She surprised him with her own cover version of “The Dance.” It was Kelly Clarkson herself who serenaded Garth Brooks with his 1990 country No. 1 hit during the 43rd annual Kennedy Center Honors in Washington, D.C.
Brooks was the ninth country artist to be an honoree at the event. He and his wife Trisha Yearwood were moved nearly to tears as they marveled at Kelly Clarksons’ performance.
Talking to Entertainment Tonight, Clarkson admitted how “nervous” she felt singing “The Dance” in front of Brooks during the Kennedy Center Honors. She said, “I was texting Trisha Yearwood before the show, and then I go on stage and I saw them, and like, all of a sudden, I am the sweatiest human on planet earth.”
But her full-band rendition won over the 59-year-old country artist. She adds, “It’s just so pretty. That woman is a true friend to a song. She’s amazing.”
During the 43rd Kennedy Center Honors, Brooks was honored alongside Debbie Allen, Joan Baez, Dick Van Dyke, and Midori at the Kennedy Center. Gloria Estefan was the host for the second time. In addition to Clarkson, Derek Hough, Vanessa Hudgens, Pentatonix, Gladys Knight, Emmylou Harris, Jimmie Allen, and Yo-Yo Ma also performed tributes to the honorees.
The 2021 Kennedy Center Honors was aired on June 6, at 8 p.m. ET on CBS. It was also streamed on Paramount+. You can also watch a clip of Kelly Clarksons’ performance on YouTube as it was shared by various channels, which now has millions of views.