Lee Brice is making his full-song performance debut on the ACM stage during the awards show on Sunday night, and he’s planning to make it count.
“I performed a piece of ‘I Drive Your Truck,’ like,’ 10 years ago at a commercial bumper on the ACMs. That’s the only time I’ve ever performed on the ACMs,” he says. “So this is truly my first time every performing a full song on the ACMs. I’m super excited and want to get in there and knock socks off, if I can.”
Lee is performing “I Hope You’re Happy Now,” his duet with Carly Pearce, a song that has already won the pair an early trophy for ACM Music Event of the Year.
Their spot on the show is a second chance at performing “I Hope You’re Happy Now” for Lee: He and Carly were booked to sing it during last November’s CMA Awards, but Lee had to step down at the last second due to a positive COVID-19 test.
“I was just by myself in my barn, watching it,” Lee recalls of that experience, as he sat in quarantine and watched Carly perform the song with Lady A’s Charles Kelley instead of him.
“I will say, there was that, ‘Ugh, I was singing that.’ Although Charles killed it. I did tell him, ‘Man, bring your A-game, because this song is, like, the hardest song I’ve ever had to sing,’” Lee goes on to say, adding that Charles "called me after and said, ‘You were not kidding.’”
The ACM Awards airs on Sunday night at 8 p.m. ET on CBS.