Jimmie Allen Shares ‘Freedom Was a Highway’ at 2021 CMA Awards
Jimmie Allen brought his Brad Paisley collaboration, "Freedom Was a Highway," to the 2021 CMA Awards. The country star performed the song during the awards show on Wednesday night (Nov. 10), marking another memorable moment in a landmark night in Allen's career.
Allen looked sharp in black as he gave a powerful delivery of the song, reaching for some big notes and earning the approval of the crowd. His sparkling, energetic solo performance followed an emotionally charged acceptance speech from Allen after he was named New Artist of the Year. The Delaware native was nominated for the same award in 2020, but lost to Morgan Wallen.
"Five years ago I spent my last $100 and came to the CMAs 50th to watch Charley Pride perform on stage, and I got to perform with him last year," he reminisced tearfully in accepting the award on Wednesday night.
"Freedom Was a Highway" comes from Allen's Bettie James EP, released in 2020. Allen co-wrote the Top 15 country radio single with Ash Bowers and Matt Rogers.
The Country Music Association held the 2021 CMA Awards at Bridgestone Arena in downtown Nashville. The show, hosted for the first time by Luke Bryan, returned to the venue — its home since 2006 — after one year at Music City Center due to the COVID-19 pandemic.