Chris Young Performs ‘Drowning’ in Honor of Kane Brown’s Late Drummer
Chris Young used his time onstage at Wednesday night's (Oct. 16) CMT Artists of the Year ceremony to perform a heart-wrenching in memoriam for Kane Brown's late drummer, Kenny Dixon, who died in a car accident earlier this week.
"I wrote this song about a friend of mine that passed away too soon in a car accident," Young explained as he introduced his song "Drowning." "I kind of empathize with Kane and what he's going through and I really appreciate him allowing me to stand up here tonight and sing this in honor of his friend, Kenny."
There wasn't a dry eye in the house as Young sang the lyrics to the heartbreaking song. At the end of the performance, the country star pointed above his head, as to signal Dixon in heaven, while he held back tears.
The crowd gave a standing ovation to Young's performance and in Dixon's memory.
WATCH: Kane Brown Responds to His Drummer's Death
Young was the one to present Brown with the 2019 Artist of the Year award. Still reeling from the loss, Brown's acceptance speech centered around Dixon and his memory, and he couldn't help but break down.
"Thank you all so much. I want to dedicate this to our drummer Kenny," Brown said, his voice shaking as he spoke. "He started with me coming out of Chattanooga off Facebook, people didn’t think we would make it, he was with me the whole time. He was so supportive of me."
"And I love you man, I miss you. The band misses you," he concluded.
According to police, Dixon, 27, was traveling at a high rate of speed on a Tennessee highway when his Kia Rio veered off the road and hit a tree, killing him. In the wake of his death, Brown has rescheduled his upcoming Los Angeles Staples Center anniversary concert, which was originally scheduled for Friday, Oct. 18. It will now take place in January 2020.
Brown was one of five Artists of the Year honorees at the event — Carrie Underwood, Thomas Rhett, Luke Combs and Dan + Shay were also recognized.
See Photos From the 2019 CMT Artists of the Year Ceremony: