OFFSTAGE: The Band Perry Remembers Mud Ridin’ to Tim McGraw

(CMT Offstage keeps a 24/7 watch on everything that’s happening with country music artists behind the scenes and out of the spotlight.)

Taylor Swift‘s not the only one who grew up falling in love to Tim McGraw songs. Kimberly Perry of The Band Perry took me down her own memory lane on Saturday (July 16) night when they were in Chicago to open McGraw’s concert. I asked them what it was like to be touring with such a country superstar, and Reid Perry first said it was one of the best experiences they’ve had in their 13 years in music. Then Kimberly got a little more specific. “I grew up listening to Tim in Mobile, Ala., going mud ridin’,” she said. “That’s what we would do when it rained. We would all get in these jacked-up trucks and go ride through mud puddles. And I remember listening to Tim when I was 15 or 16 years old, riding in these mud trucks. And now here we are performing with him,” she said. I imagined they’d be cranking “Where the Green Grass Grows” or “I Like It, I Love It.” But Perry said they’d play “It’s Your Love” over and over and over. When I said that didn’t really sound like a mud ridin’ kind of song, she just smiled and said, “It is when you go with your boyfriend.” Not only did The Band Perry get to play their own set early in the night, they came back onstage to sing with McGraw on his 1995 hit “Can’t Really Be Gone” about halfway through his set.

Alison makes her living loving country music. She's based in Chicago, but she's always leaving her heart in Nashville.