Kane Brown made perhaps the night’s most touching speech when he dedicated his CMT Artist of the Year award to his friend and drummer Kenny Dixon, who died Saturday in a car accident. He told the audience that Dixon had been a part of his life from the time he was still living in Chattanooga and singing on Facebook.
“People didn’t think we would make it. He was with me the whole time,” Brown said, choking back tears. “He was so supportive of me — and I love you, man. I miss you, the band misses you.
He added, “I want to thank my management, and CMT — you’ve been so good to me, being here since I’ve been here. Thank you all so much. Thanks for this award. My fans, everybody that’s helped me get where I’m at. I love everybody. Country music, all the people in here that I talk to, that I don’t talk to, just know that I love you guys. I love the country community. God bless you guys. You all stay safe. I love you all.”
Chris Young, one of Brown’s musical heroes who has become one of his closest friends in country music, sang “Drowning” in Dixon’s honor.