Garth Brooks Invites Blake Shelton to His “Dive Bar”

Shelton Is First Guy to Duet with Brooks Since George Jones in 2001

When Garth Brooks first moved to Nashville, he played some seedy places. “A rough ass gig,” Brooks wrote about one of them in his most recent The Anthology book. But before that, he was getting his fill of places in Oklahoma that you might consider dive bars, like Thumper’s, Willie’s Saloon and so many more.

The point is, the man knows his way around dive bars.

So it’s no surprise the Brooks has written a new song with Mitch Rossell and Bryan Kennedy called “Dive Bar.” But what is kind of shocking is that he’s invited Blake Shelton into this one.

And I only say that because Brooks doesn’t make a habit of duets with artists other than his wife Trisha Yearwood. In fact, it wasn’t until his 8th studio album Sevens that a duet with Yearwood first appeared, “In Another’s Eyes.” After that, the only true duet to appear on one of his records was one with George Jones on “Beer Run.”

Brooks made the announcement about the new song while he was at Shelton’s Ole Red Bar in Nashville, and he said the two of them would be performing it live for the first time at his Boise show in July.

How’s Shelton feel about it? He’s almost speechless. Last year, he told me that when he was roofing houses during his high school summer vacations, he earned enough money to buy the same black Takamine guitar that Brooks had played on his This Is Garth Brooks TV special.

He posted a video on Twitter to let Brooks know how disappointed he was that he wasn’t in Nashville for CMA Fest. “I love you, and you’re my hero,” he says. “Son of a dammit I wish I was there.”

It’s starting to look like this song is poised to be a massive summer anthem. Not just because of the Shelton collaboration, but because after a long hiatus from music videos — his last official one was for his “Midnight Sun” in 2008 — Brooks says he and Shelton are going to make one for “Dive Bar.”

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