Wynonna Judd Is ‘Confident’ Ashley McBryde Will ‘Carry The Torch’

Judd shared kind words about McBryde after their CMT Awards duet.


Madeleine O’Connell

| Posted on

April 4, 2023


1:01 pm

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Ashley McBryde and Wynonna Judd perform onstage during the 2023 CMT Music Awards; Photo by Jeff Kravitz/Getty Images for CMT

Ashley McBryde and Wynonna Judd reunited on stage for a powerful performance during the 2023 CMT Awards, held on Sunday, April 2. 

Judd started off with a solo moment before McBryde joined her in singing the remainder of the 1984 Foreigner hit, “I Want to Know What Love Is.” This offered another chance for these artists to share the stage following McBryde’s run as a guest on The Judds: The Final Tour, which was held as a tribute to the late Naomi Judd, and the mother-daughter duo known as The Judds. 

Ashley McBryde and Wynonna Judd perform onstage during the 2023 CMT Music Awards; Photo by Rick Kern/Getty Images for CMT
Ashley McBryde and Wynonna Judd perform onstage during the 2023 CMT Music Awards; Photo by Rick Kern/Getty Images for CMT

Wynonna took to Twitter following her recent appearance with McBryde to commemorate this special moment as well as their time on the road together.

She wrote, “Another unforgettable night @ the @CMT awards! Getting to sing w/ @ashleymcbryde over these past 6 months has been one of the highlights of my career, & to close it out with a song I love so much was such a moment for me. I am confident in this woman’s ability to carry the torch❤️‍🔥”

The “Light On In The Kitchen” singer shared similar images and an equally heartfelt message to her fellow singer/songwriter on Instagram. 

“Wy, standing in awe of you is even better when I’m by your side on a stage,” McBryde wrote. “Thank you @CMT Awards for such a cool night in Austin. And for giving me this moment.”

The stage made for a spiritual setting equipped with smoke and images of stained-glass windows as the female country music stars delivered a stunning rendition of the classic song. 

“In my life, there’s been heartache and pain / I don’t know if I can face it again / Can’t stop now, I’ve traveled so far / To change this lonely life,” they sang effortlessly. “I wanna know what love is / I want you to show me / I wanna feel what love is / I know you can show me.”

Sparks flew in the background as Judd’s impressive vocals shined in the final notes of the song. McBryde and Judd grabbed hands while looking out into the sea of fans and fellow artists cheering them on. 

YouTube video

This performance comes just one year after Wynonna Judd took the stage with her mother, Naomi Judd, to sing “Love Can Build A Bridge” at the 2022 CMT Music Awards. Just a few weeks after this appearance, the shocking news of Naomi’s passing was unveiled to the public. 

In a statement from her daughters, the country music community learned that Judd passed away at the age of 76 on Saturday, April 30, 2022. 

“Today we sisters experienced a tragedy. We lost our beautiful mother to the disease of mental illness,” the statement read. “We are shattered. We are navigating profound grief and know that as we loved her, she was loved by her public. We are in unknown territory.”

The Judds; Photo by Getty Images for CMT
The Judds; Photo by Getty Images for CMT

Wynonna Judd carried on her mom’s legacy and their musical duo in the memorable trek that kicked off on September 30. Along with McBryde, the extended run featured special guests like Brandi Carlile, Little Big Town and Kelsea Ballerini, and wrapped up on February 25. 

Throughout the year, she will make appearances at a variety of festivals including Two Step Inn Festival (April 16), Master Musicians Festival (July 15), Neon Nights Festival (August 12), and Golden Sky Festival (Oct. 14).  Wynonna is also slated to make a stop in Greenwood Village, CO on September 30 as a guest on Tyler Childers Send in the Hounds Tour. 

Meanwhile, Ashley McBryde will headline a slew of shows in the spring before joining Eric Church for three dates on his The Outsiders Revival Tour. Later, she will join Jelly Roll for seven shows on his Backroad Baptism Tour

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Madeleine O’Connell graduated from North Central College with a bachelors degree in Journalism and Broadcast Communications before deciding to pursue her studies further at DePaul University. There, she earned her masters degree in Digital Communication & Media Arts. O’Connell served as a freelance writer for over two years while also interning with the Academy of Country Music, SiriusXM and Circle Media and assisting with Amazon Music’s Country Heat Weekly podcast. In addition to Country Now, she has been published in American Songwriter, Music Mayhem, and Holler.Country. Madeleine O’Connell is a member of the Country Music Association and the Academy of Country Music.