Randy Travis and Carrie Underwood head to American Idol

randy-travis-and-carrie-underwoodNext Tuesday will be “Grand Ole Opry” week on American Idol, and they’re bringing out the big guns. The guest mentor will be country music legend Randy Travis, who will also perform on the show. This year’s homecoming theme will also continue, as Carrie Underwood returns to perform.

This is the latest in a string of connections between Travis and Underwood. In addition to Travis inviting Underwood to join the Opry, she is currently moving quickly up the charts with a cover of “I Told You So”, a #1 hit both performed and penned by Travis.

Warner Bros. will release I Told You So, a 2-cd collection of Randy Travis hits, later this month.


  1. Some more information:

    Grand Ole Opry meets American Idol
    Wednesday, March 11, 2009 – American Idol will feature a Grand Ole Opry theme March 17 and 18 as contestants will select and perform songs popularized by Opry members.
    Opry members Carrie Underwood and Randy Travis will sing together Travis’ classic hit I Told You So, now also Underwood’s latest single. Brad Paisley will make the television debut of his new single, Then, off his forthcoming summer album.

  2. You know the world is messed up when American Idol has Grand Ole Opry night and Nashville Star has Danity Kane performing.

  3. Carrie and Randy recorded a duet version of I Told You So and they will be performing it, then it will be available at all digital music sale outlets. It should be a good duet, I’m sure it will have big sales.

  4. I’m excited for next week now! I love when Idol goes country! I also can’t wait to see Carrie and Randy perform…I’m sure that’ll be amazing! Also, I heard Brad Paisley is going to perform his new single “Then” on the show. So they’re pulling out all the stops!

  5. Am I the only one who thinks that Danny Gokey (a frontrunner on the show) and Michael Sarver (from Texas) would be wise to choose careers in country music? I mean while pop music might be ‘good’ for them, I can totally see Gokey having a successful mainstream country career.

  6. “Carrie’s version of this 1988 #1 classic by Travis can be found on her Carnival Ride album, and fans will soon be hearing another version on the airwaves as a new studio recording pairing Carrie and Randy arrives at country radio next week. A digital single of that recording will be available for sale at online music providers everywhere to coincide with their American Idol performance.”

    So, I guess the duet will count as a spin for ITYS, much like when Reba was added to “Cowgirls don’t cry”.

  7. northtexas,

    Yes, it will work that way, just like it did for “Find Out Who Your Friends Are.” It’s going to be played by radio but likely not ‘promoted’ as a duet for radio.

  8. @Matt B.:
    I can see Michael having a country career, I actually think he’d do better with country. He’s one of the contestants that I’m looking forward to hearing next week. I’m not sure about Danny though. I think his voice is more suited for pop. Both of them are in my top four favorites along with Kris Allen and Alison Iraheta. By the way, I’m so not looking forward to Adam screwing up a country song with his screaming…I mean singing.

  9. Matt, I think you’re onto something there, especially with Danny Gokey…I think he could go in any direction he wants with great success. I think he is the best of the bunch this season.

    And it was great to see Kelly Clarkson…I think Idol got it right their first season out and that she is the best of ANY season so far.

    I don’t know a lot about her, but from what I’ve seen, heard and read, it seems to me Kelly brings extreme talent, dignity and integrity to the world of Pop music.

  10. Aaron, I agree with your take on Adam…The judges were all ga ga over him, but I think if they closed their eyes and just listened, they wouldn’t have been quite so impressed. I think they were letting his dynamic stage presence influence their perception of how he sounded. It sounded like screaming to me as well, and I’m a little surprised at Simon for letting himself be swept away as well.

  11. “Aaron, I agree with your take on Adam…The judges were all ga ga over him, but I think if they closed their eyes and just listened, they wouldn’t have been quite so impressed. I think they were letting his dynamic stage presence influence their perception of how he sounded. It sounded like screaming to me as well, and I’m a little surprised at Simon for letting himself be swept away as well.”

    Yup I just don’t get why they’re all going nuts about him! I thought he butchered “Satisfaction” during his first performance in the semi-finals and I was shocked that he got through. I can already tell the judges want him in the final, hopefully the “voters” will kick him out before then, but if that does happen I’m sure the judges would save him.

    Back to Carrie for a minute, has anyone downloaded her version of “Home Sweet Home?” I just did and I’m loving it! It’s been on repeat for about 10 minutes now! I have yet to hear a bad cover song from her.

  12. I actually don’t mind Adam and when you place him in the context of the right material for him (Emoish pop/rock) he’ll be fine but Gokey’s a better singer. You mix Gokey’s voice with Adam’s stage presence and you’ve got perhaps the best male contestant in Idol’s history.

    I really think Gokey’s background in churches, etc. is more pliable to him having a very successful country career.

    I have a feeling that Adam will sing some rangy female vocalist song while I can see Gokey dippin’ his talent into a Garth Brooks tune.

  13. I’ve never really understood why Randy Travis wasn’t on the original version of “I Told You So.” As much as I love Vince, it just would’ve made since to have the writer/original singer guest on the song rather than another guest star.

  14. Adam and Kris are my favorites on Idol this season. I’m looking forward to seeing them tackle a country song. Megan might be interesting too just to see what she does.

    Country week hasn’t always been hugely successful on AI. I’m glad they narrowed it down to GOO member songs this year.

  15. Hopefully all the songs are good selections. Does anyone else think it’s a little ‘soon’ to be having country week (I don’t mind at all, mind you).

  16. @Matt B.:
    Yea usually they have country week later on in the season but I guess they wanted to get it out of the way. Or maybe it was the only time they could get both Randy and Carrie to appear. Either way I’m excited. I’m a bit disappointed it’s such a short list to choose from especially since there are countless members of the Opry. So it should be interesting to see who chooses what.

  17. I was thinking the same thing Leeann…the best artists(like Hank WiIliams, Patty and Vince, etc) are limited to one song each, while the list seems loaded to favor the newer members of the Opry. I guess that’s the way Idol caters to their mostly young demographic.

  18. I’m just happy people have the option of singing a Pam Tillis song. I’d love for someone to nail “Maybe it Was Memphis” and get that song back on the radar.

  19. I’m sure there will be a few songs that are unknown to most performed there usually are. I am excited to see Randy and Carrie singing together I thought her and Brad were great together for “Make The World Go Away”, so doing a semi-traditional song as a duet will suit he well.

  20. I hope someone does attempt “Maybe It Was Memphis.” It’s certainly one of the best songs on that list. It’s probably one of the most challenging.

  21. That list may not be complete or even accurate. In an interview after being eliminated, Jorge Nunez stated that he was planning to sing Carrie’s “I Know You Won’t” for country week. That song’s not on the list.

  22. Leila,

    It may not be complete but it certainly is likely to be the main choices. It’d have been REALLY odd and quite foolish, really to sing an unknown CU song. In fact the judges have almost universally been critical of people who sing former Idol songs.

  23. I wonder how many Carrie Underwood covers there will be?

    I hope that Kris Allen does Beautiful Mess, I think that that would suit his style.

  24. I hope no one covers carrie for when they do, it’s just messed up. They just can’t compete with the original or make it their own.

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