Jon Pardi honored Randy Travis with a performance of two of his iconic country hits, paying tribute to Travis during CMT’s Artist Of A Lifetime. In a video clip recorded at The Nashville Palace in Tennessee, Pardi pays homage to the country music legend days ahead of the CMT’s Artist Of The Year special, which aired last week.

In the near 10-minute long clip, Pardi performed two of Travis’ iconic hits, including “On the Other Hand” and “Forever and Ever, Amen,” which he called two “big ol’ hits.” During the video, he also honored Travis, saying,
“Randy Travis is country. When you think legendary country, it’s Randy Travis. I’m such a big fan of Randy, it just goes to show… your influences will guide you to what you want to do if you do it right. Being a part of country music now, with all the new artists, and then you got our legends like Randy. We’re all a part of this big community and my names in that big hat with Randy and that’s a big deal.”  Click to watch Pardi’s tribute performance – here.

What Pardi didn’t realize is that there would be a very special audience member for his performance: Travis himself. In the middle of a song, Travis entered the building along with his wife, Mary. Said Jon: “Well, hey Randy! This is a surprise. Wow.” At the end of the video, Pardi is overcome by tears, singing “He Walked on Water” while Travis is sitting beside him. “Everybody needs a good cry every now and then, right, you know? Happy cry,” Pardi adds.  You can watch the clip of  Pardi’s surprise from Travis – here.

Editorial credit: Kathy Hutchins /