Dierks Bentley and the War and Treaty Grace the ACM Awards With U2 Classic ‘Pride’
Dierks Bentley, the War and Treaty, Larking Poe and Brittany Haas gave one of the most musically surprising performances at the 2021 ACM Awards in Nashville on Sunday night (April 18). The county star and the Americana and roots duo teamed up to put their own unique spin on U2's classic song, "Pride (In the Name of Love)."
Before performing, Bentley introduced the venue — Nashville's famed Station Inn — as the ground zero for Bluegrass in the city. He told the story of first visiting the venue when he was 19 years old and finding something special. Bentley also paid tribute to the Station Inn's former owner J.T. Gray, who died at the age of 75 earlier in the year.
Bentley and company then ripped into a soaring rendition of "Pride (In the Name of Love)" in one of the evening's most rousing performances. The War and Treaty provided hair-raising vocals during the chorus, while roots rock band Larkin Poe and famed fiddler Brittany Haas provided all the bluegrass energy the song deserved.
Bentley first met the husband-and-wife duo of Michael Trotter Jr. and Tanya Blount Trotter in 2018 at that year's Country Music Hall of Fame induction ceremony, and they played at his Seven Peaks Festival in 2019. They kept in touch via text throughout the pandemic, and that's how Bentley asked them to join him at the 2021 ACM Awards — by sending them a text.
"Pride (In the Name of Love)" gave U2 one of their most enduring songs when it was released as the lead single from their all-time classic 1984 album The Unforgettable Fire.
Bentley previously covered the song on his 2010 bluegrass album Up on the Ridge, in a new arrangement with the Punch Brothers featuring Del McCoury. The ACM performance was another updated arrangement worthy of the hype.
Bentley went into the 2021 ACM Awards broadcast on Sunday night with a nomination for Male Artist of the Year, and he was also nominated in the category of Video of the Year, which went to Kane Brown in an early win announced in the days prior to the show.
The 2021 ACM Awards air live on CBS and stream live on Paramount+. Sign up for Paramount+ here.