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Wynonna Judd honors late mom Naomi with surprise performance at CMA Fest

Wynonna joined Carly Pearce on stage and sang her 1984 hit song that she originally performed with her mother called "Why Not Me?"
/ Source: TODAY

Wynonna Judd gave fans a surprise when she attended the 2022 CMA Fest in Nashville, Tennessee, and joined Carly Pearce on stage to pay homage to her late mother, Naomi Judd.

Before Wynonna, 58, graced the audience, Pearce, 32, introduced her by talking about the family's singing group The Judds and the legacy they left behind.

Carly Pearce and Wynonna Judd perform during day 2 of CMA Fest 2022 at Nissan Stadium on June 10, 2022 in Nashville, Tennessee.
Carly Pearce and Wynonna Judd perform during day two of CMA Fest 2022 at Nissan Stadium on June 10, 2022 in Nashville, Tennessee.Jason Kempin / Getty Images

“CMA Fest, we lost one of our absolute pillars in country music earlier this year: Miss Naomi Judd," she said, according to The Tennessean. "As a girl growing up in Kentucky, I idolized the Judds and wanted to be like them."

"My first concert was to see Wynonna. And I’ve always loved all of the music that the Judds made and feel like it is such a representation of the best of country music, So CMA Fest, please make welcome Wynonna Judd.”

When she took the stage, Wynonna joined Pearce in singing a duet of her 1984 song, “Why Not Me?”

Carly Pearce, left, and Wynonna Judd perform during CMA Fest 2022 on Friday, June 10, 2022.
Carly Pearce, left, and Wynonna Judd perform during CMA Fest 2022 on June 10, 2022.Amy Harris / AP

The song was originally performed by The Judds and it helped them rise to fame in the country music scene in the mid-'80s.

In April, Naomi died one day before she was scheduled to be inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame. Her daughters, Wynonna and Ashley Judd, said that they were "shattered" after hearing of her death.

"We are navigating profound grief and know that as we loved her, she was loved by her public. We are in unknown territory," they said in a statement.

In honor of her mother, Wynonna decided to continue on with their joint tour, “The Judds: The Final Tour," that they were scheduled to do this fall.

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Ashley Judd, Naomi Judd and Wynonna Judd.Theo Wargo / WireImage

“So, I made a decision and I thought I’d share it on national television. That after a lot of thought, I’m going to have to honor her and do this tour. I’m just going to have to,” Wynonna said in a May CMT special, “Naomi Judd: A River of Time Celebration." “Because that’s what you would want, and Bono once told me give them what they want, not what you want.”

As a way to celebrate her mother, Wynonna has invited some big country music stars to help her sing some of The Judds songs and so far, Brandi Carlile, Faith Hill, Little Big Town, Martina McBride, Ashley McBryde and Trisha Yearwood have all said yes.

More singers are set to be announced at a later time. However, the concert will kick off in Grand Rapids, Michigan, on Sept. 30 and end in The Judds’ home state of Kentucky on Oct. 29.