Cole Swindell is a huge fan of 90s country music. At CMA Fest in Nashville a few weeks ago, he got to meet one of his musical heroes: Garth Brooks. He was a surprise guest, and actually came on stage right before Cole. Cole told Country Countdown USA’s Lon Helton, “We didn’t hear about that until just a couple hours before the show. I think my set got pushed back 15 minutes or something, and I asked why. They said, ‘Don’t say anything, but we think Garth Brooks is coming by to do an acoustic medley.’ I said, ‘He’s gonna play the whole night if he’s doing a medley of hits. But just to be there side stage, I had a chance to speak with him, me & Thomas Rhett, we were watching like we were kids again, hearing these songs, knowing we wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for Garth Brooks. We might not have liked country music if it weren’t for Garth Brooks. It meant a lot to me. Somebody walked me over to him, I got to shake his hand, he said, ‘You’re gonna crush it, they’re gonna love you,’ and it was so cool, I was so nervous talking to him, but to have the Entertainer of the Year tell you you’re gonna be great.”
Now for the rest of your life, you can say Garth Brooks opened for you! “That’s what Dierks said later that night. I would never say that. There were people joking about that. Then I had to follow him!”
A TV special featuring Garth Brooks, Cole Swindell, and many more live performances from CMA Fest 2017 will air Wednesday night, August 16 on ABC-TV.