(KGTV) — Country music artists banded together Wednesday to celebrate and recognize the best in the industry and provide some needed relief to a reeling music community.
Nearly a week after the deadly shooting at a Thousand Oaks bar known for its affinity for country music, musicians focused on healing and laughing at the 52nd annual Country Music Association Awards.
Garth Brooks led a solemn tribute to the 12 people killed during a shooting at a Southern California country music bar last week.
Brooks said the victims were "lost too soon" and urged viewers and the audience to "celebrate their lives." He then took off his hat and asked everyone to join him in a moment of silence. The names of those killed were shown on a black screen for television audiences.
Authorities are still trying to determine what led a former Marine to attack the Borderline Bar & Grill in Thousand Oaks on Nov. 7 during a country music dance night that drew area college students and other young people.
After the moment of silence, the show began with a rousing performance of Luke Bryan's song "What Makes You Country."
Hosts Carrie Underwood and Brad Paisley will help move the community through their healing process Wednesday, known for their lighthearted jokes poking at one another, their fellow singers, and — a week after midterms — politics.
Also, a special appearance by Paisley's "older brother," Gary.
"His other name is Will Ferrell," Paisley said on Good Morning America. Ferrell recently crashed Paisley's benefit show as well. "We're trying to keep him out, but we'll see.
"You turn on the news this morning and there's these fires and shootings and we're hoping especially next week at the CMAs to give everybody a bunch of laughs. It's just going to be fun and [we'll] try our best," Paisley told GMA.
The awards show will air at 8 p.m. on ABC10.