Keith Urban, John Mellencamp Team Up on ‘Pink Houses’ at 2015 CMA Awards
Mellencamp began by strumming his acoustic guitar, rendering the classic opening chords to "Pink Houses" for the live audience on hand at the Bridgestone Arena in Nashville. Urban joined in for the second verse, and the two stars faced off at the microphone to sing the chorus together, both dressed in black.
That served as a cool prelude for Urban to perform his hit single, "John Cougar, John Deere, John 3:16" — John Cougar being the stage name Mellencamp originally performed under before taking back his birth name.
Urban put aside his guitar for the performance of the funky song, which has one of the most vivid lyrics to grace radio this year. Instead, he played bass for the up-tempo, fun performance, which drew a huge round of applause from both the fans and performers on hand at the awards ceremony.
The superstar landed his 19th No. 1 hit with the song. The track is the lead-off track from his upcoming new record, Ripcord, slated to release in 2016.
“The next record may be really, really different because I was in a different place. In some ways I feel making this record now that I’m working on is going to be easy because Fuse was such a process of finding new people,” he explains. “I got in and started making some music with [producer] Nathan [Chapman] back in January and I didn’t feel the way about it as I hoped I would. It was kind of in that moment I thought, ‘This is not going to be easy.’ Here we are, nine months later and Nathan and I are back in the studio still going at it. It’s a process.”
Urban and Eric Church won Musical Event of the Year earlier Wednesday for their collaboration, "Raise 'Em Up."
See Country Stars on the Red Carpet at the 2015 CMA Awards