Despite a slew of big hits, Little Big Town has never forgotten their roots. “I’m proud of where I came from,” they sing on their classic “Boondocks” track. Their delicious harmonies are unmistakably groundbreaking, harkening to the days of The Carter Family. They pour their hearts and their talents out on every song they record, so it’s no wonder they’ve broken out in big ways the past 5 years. Through numerous studio albums, they’ve delighted fans with their understanding of the past and how to best serve country music in the long run. Their live shows are even more mesmerizing. Don’t believe us?
10 Best Performances From Little Big Town:
“Boondocks” (2014 Grand Ole Opry Induction)
There’s nothing quite as satisfying as this group’s harmonies–and Jimi Westbrook’s soulful and burning lead vocal. During their Oct. 2014 induction into the Grande Ole Opry, the quartet ripped into this standout from 2005’s The Road to Here LP. It’s familiar but they somehow make each and every performance a classic one.
“Independence Day” (2011 ACM “Girls Night Out”)
Perhaps Martina McBride’s defining hit, the band stripped down the sweeping production for a harrowing, emotional moment during the 2011 ACM event celebrating pivotal female artists. With Westbrook taking the lead here, the song takes on a whole new meaning. It’ll send chills down your spine, that’s for sure.
“Stay” (2008 at KASE Sprint Music Lounge)
LBT knows their way around a damn good ballad. Left to their own devices, they’ll blow you away. Acoustic is when they shine the brightest, as they do here in this intimate setting. The song is featured on their 2002 eponymous debut, and later re-recorded for 2005’s The Road to Here.
“Sober” (2013 concert stop in Knoxville, TN)
How this absolute chill-inducing song didn’t become the biggest hit of 2013 is one of life’s many mysteries. Kimberly Schlapman’s vocal is feathery, ethereal and utterly magnetizing. We could have easily picked from hundreds of performances of this song, but there’s something magical about this one.
“Fix You” (2011 Justice Through Music benefit concert)
Few can cover this Coldplay song and do it well. You don’t have anything to worry about with LBT at the helm. The dress the longing and ache up with their bittersweet harmonies, backed by only two guitars. One of their most stunning moments.
“Your Side of the Bed” (2013 ACM Awards)
Even without acrobats twirling in the air, this performance would have been mighty on its own. But the elaborate staging added a sense of urgency and intimacy to the production. Westbrook and Karen Fairchild trade off lead vocals on the verses, with Schlapman and Philip Sweet support with unbelievable harmonies. One of the band’s most criminally underrated songs. [Watch here]
“Girl Crush” (2015 Front & Center)
In all honesty, you’ll be hard pressed to find an LBT performance that isn’t good. So, narrowing down to just one “Girl Crush” performance was difficult, to say the least. But this moment also includes the Love Junkies (Liz Rose, Hillary Lindsey and Lori McKenna) as background singers and who take the lead on some lyrical highlights.
“Better Man” (2016 CMA Awards)
LBT is killing it the past few years. Coming off the massive success of “Girl Crush,” they hit on all cylinders with this Taylor Swift-penned ballad about yearning a former lover could have been a better person. Fairchild is a marvel when she takes the lead, and this might be one of her finest onstage moments.
“Born This Way” (2011 on “Rosie”)
LBT shows how easy it is to flip a boisterous Lady Gaga pop anthem into a honky tonk, bluegrass ditty. With a full band to support them, they go full-steam ahead on this groove-based reinvention about empowerment and living as yourself.
“The Reason Why” (2010 “Good Morning America”)
Even getting up in the wee hours of the morning can’t slow down the vocal train of LBT. Absolutely unstoppable.