Carrie Underwood Honors Toby Keith at the Grand Ole Opry [WATCH]

Carrie Underwood honored Toby Keith with her recent appearance at the Grand Ole Opry. The mother of two performed “Should’ve Been A Cowboy” during her performance, in tribute to Keith, who passed away in February from stomach cancer.

“So one of the most special things about getting to play at the Opry is not just the music, but it’s the people you get to hang out with while you’re here, and as an artist you can have some really cool moments that can’t be duplicated anywhere else,” Underwood shared (via Music Mayhem).

“A few years back, I had one of those nights that I will always remember and always treasure,” she shared. “I was playing the night that Toby Keith was playing. I had always been around him, I’ve always said hi, and had short little conversations at awards shows and stuff like that. But, he asked me to come on his bus and I got to go and hang out with him for a little bit. It was a night that I will always cherish. We talked Oklahoma, and feel like we got along pretty well. He was just a good one, so I thought we would honor him tonight by singing one of his songs.”

This isn’t the first time Underwood has praised Keith for his influence in country music, especially for her. The American Idol alum also honored Keith at the BMI Awards in 2022, where he was given the BMI Icon Award.

“It was artists like you that taught kids like me that greatness is possible,” Underwood said at the time.

After the news of Keith’s death was announced, Underwood praised Keith for the impact he had on her career, especially since they are both natives of the Sooner State.

“There are so many things that can be said about Mr. Toby Keith,” Underwood told her record label. “I mean, obviously, he has had such a monumental career. He has some of the biggest songs that ever, ever were or probably ever will be in country music, and obviously, has built up that legacy for himself that will live on. But I think one of the best things about Toby is his love for Oklahoma. He’s a proud Okie, and I feel like that’s something that always connected us.

“We’d talk about it,” she continued. “He’s one of the ones, he never left. No matter how big and famous he got, he was gonna stay in Oklahoma, and he was always the first one there when disaster would strike – tornado or whatever it was. He was the first one trying to rally the troops or raise money or help out in any way he could. I feel like that’s one of the things that I respect the most about him — he never forgot where he came from and has been such a stellar example to the rest of us to do the same.”

Underwood posted about the country music legend’s passing on social media, shortly after his death was announced.

“Saddle up the horses, Jesus, ‘cause a true blue COWBOY just made his ride up to heaven!!!” Underwood wrote. “Introduce him to all the Okies and sign that boy up for the choir! We’re gonna miss you, Toby, but my heart has no doubt that you are standing in the presence of our King right now!!! See you again someday, friend.”

Keith will be inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame later this year, along with John Anderson, and guitarist James Burton. A date for the ceremony, which is not open to the public, has yet to be announced.

Find all of Underwood’s music and upcoming shows at

Read ‘Carrie Underwood: 11 Things to Know About the Global Superstar’ here.