Kenny Chesney Praises Kelsea Ballerini After Record-Breaking Nashville Show

Kenny Chesney brought his Here and Now Tour home to Nashville over the weekend, and set a new attendance record in the process. The Knoxville native performed at Nissan Stadium, setting a new single-day attendance record, with 57,211 people in the crowd.

Chesney was joined for the show Dan + ShayOld Dominion and Carly Pearce, who are serving as his opening acts for all of his dates on his Here and Now Tour. He was also joined by an emotional Kelsea Ballerini, who sang their No. 1 “Half Of My Hometown” hit single together.

“Being here in Nashville where so many dreams came true, seeing Kelsea on the verge of making the same kind of mark, it made me realize how strong this connection is,” Chesney later said. “It’s not just fun or hooks or guitar riffs, it’s one massive heart that we all share. To have that is the greatest gift, greatest reason for doing this – and tonight really hit me in the soul.”

Chesney also spoke about his performance with Ballerini on social media.

“The Nashville show was so special for me on so many levels. Sharing the stage with [Kelsea Ballerini] was one of my favorite shared musical moments in a very long time. Thank you Kelsea. I’m proud of you!!”

Prior to performing “Half Of My Hometown,” Chesney spoke about what the song meant to him, and how honored he was to be invited to sing on it with Ballerini.

“When I moved to this town, first of all, I grew up in East Tennessee and she grew up in East Tennessee,” Chesney said (via Country Now). “We drove down some of the same roads together. We went to a lot of the same places to eat with our families. We listen to the same radio station and listened a lot of people tell us we couldn’t do certain things that we have dreamed in our life, but I came to this town with a head full of dreams and a heart full of music.”

“And when I heard this next song, this person and this song truly validated my dream and I’m very proud to stand up here,” he added. “We shared a No. 1 record this year and we have yet to celebrate it, so we get to celebrate it in Nashville here at Nissan tonight!”

Chesney’s Here and Now Tour will continue later this week with two shows in Texas. Find tour dates here.

Photo Credit: Courtesy of EB Media / Catherine Powell for Getty Images