"I was so nervous that I just held on for dear life."
After some viewers expressed concern over her health during what they considered a strained performance of "Need a Favor" alongside the newcomer at the ceremony on Wednesday night, the 59-year-old singer explained that nerves were responsible for her behavior.
"So they say don't read the comments — I've read the comments!" Judd said in a video shared on TikTok on Thursday morning. "I'm just gonna come clean with y'all — I was so freaking nervous. I got out there and I looked at Jelly Roll. I wanted it to be so good for him."
Judd wanted to cry from her nerves but refrained because, she said, "I'm such a fan of his and he asked me to sing and I said absolutely."
For most of the CMA Awards' opening performance, which featured a choir, Judd clutched Jelly Roll's arm. "I was so nervous that I just held on for dear life," she explained. "And that's the bottom line."
The "Give a Little Love" singer, who took a detour from her Back to Wy tour to duet with Jelly Roll, is set to resume her shows Thursday night in Texas. "I'll be on stage… with the people I love the most, and with you, the fans I love the most," Judd said. "And all is well."
Judd had told Extra backstage after the CMA Awards performance that she was feeling "very emotional" on stage and had a "tough Mama day," referring to her mother Naomi Judd's death in 2022. The late country icon, one half of the musical duo the Judds alongside daughter Wynonna, died in April 2022 from suicide at the age of 76.
"I have good days and tough days, and it was very emotional," Judd told the outlet. "People don't know. They think we make it look easy and that's our job, but the truth is, tonight was very heavy and sweet and wonderful, and such is life."
Watch Judd perform with Jelly Roll at the CMA Awards below.
Read the original article on Entertainment Weekly.