Cole Swindell + Jo Dee Messina Bring High Energy Mashup Performance to 2023 ACMs
Cole Swindell and Jo Dee Messina threw an epic '90s party onstage at the 2023 ACM Awards on Thursday night (May 11). The two acts took the stage together to perform their remix of "She Had Me at Heads Carolina."
Messina opened the song, singing her original hit "Heads Carolina, Tails California" with powerful vocals while strumming on her guitar. Swindell walked out soon after, rolling right into his No. 1 single. The pair walked through the crowd before joining each on a stage centered in the crowd.
When it came time for the bridge, Messina dove right back into her 1996 hit before closing out the performance. The two — wearing coordinating black and white outfits — embraced one another as Swindell told the roaring audience that he was hooked on Messina's hit from the very first listen.
Swindell's "She Had Me at Heads Carolina" is his modern-day answer to Messina's 1996 hit single, "Heads Carolina, Tails California." Swindell's version of the song tells the story of a guy who walks into karaoke night at a bar and is immediately transfixed by a girl singing her heart out onstage. The pair bond over their shared love of '90s country, and at the end of the night, a brand-new love story just might have been born.
Messina guest stars in the music video for "She Had Me at Heads Carolina," but her original hit had such a massive influence on Swindell's chart-topping song, it's only fitting that she get to join him for a remixed version of "She Had Me at Heads Carolina."
"She Had Me at Heads Carolina [Remix]" scored a nomination for Music Event of the Year during Thursday night's show. Additionally, Swindell's solo version of the song earned mentions in the Single of the Year, Song of the Year and Visual Media of the Year categories. He won Song of the Year right after the performance, and Single of the Year later in the evening.
The 2023 ACM Awards took place at Frisco, Texas' Ford Center. Dolly Parton and Garth Brooks co-hosted the show.