Garth Brooks got emotional listening to Kelly Clarkson perform his song “The Dance” at the 43rd annual Kennedy Center Honors. “Could have missed the pain but I would’ve had to miss the dance,” Clarkson sings in the clip before the camera pans to Brooks and his wife Trisha Yearwood. In the clips, he’s clearly holding back tears.
This song, in particular, is a meaningful one for Clarkson. When Brooks visited her talk show, The Kelly Clarkson Show, she spoke about how that song helped her through her divorce from Brandon Blackstock.
Kelly Clarkson makes Garth Brooks emotional when performing “The Dance”
“So I’m going through a divorce and there’s been like a lot of books and people always give you stuff to help, especially when you have kids and stuff,” Clarkson says at the time. “And there’s so much shame and guilt.”
“I couldn’t quite nail down the feeling… Like you don’t want to crap on it, like, you don’t want to say that [relationship] doesn’t count or matter, but you don’t know what to put in it because it didn’t work out like you wanted. 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.'”
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Clarkson revealed that Brooks’ song even inspired her to write her own song about her own divorce, which will be featured on her upcoming album. While at the Kennedy Center Honors, Brooks was joined by Debbie Allen, Joan Baez, Dick Van Dyke, and Midori being honored this year. Among the performers were Derek Hough, Vanessa Hudgens, Pentatonix, Gladys Knight, Emmylou Harris, Jimmie Allen, and Yo-Yo Ma.