Miranda Lambert delivered a special performance of John Prine‘s “That’s the Way That the World Goes ‘Round” on his custom guitar for the Country Music Hall of Fame’s Big Night (At the Museum) virtual fundraiser.
Standing solo on stage, playing to an empty CMA Theatre inside the Hall of Fame, Lambert captured the spirit of both Prine’s instrument and his timeless lyrics.
The presence of the camera offers viewers a close-up of the special guitar made for the legendary singer-songwriter in 1971 by David Russell Young, which features his name inscribed on the handle, along with a graphic of a heart with an arrow shooting through it placed above the sound hole.
“That’s the way that the world goes ’round / You’re up one day and the next you’re down / It’s half an inch of water and you think you’re gonna drown / That’s the way that the world goes ’round,” Lambert sings, the instrument’s voice echoing hauntingly through the empty hall alongside her own, her Texas twang shining through all the while.
“That’s the Way That the World Goes ‘Round” appeared on Prine’s 1978 album Bruised Orange. Lambert has long cited Prine as one of her musical heroes, the two dueting on a cover of Hank Williams‘ “Cold, Cold Heart” in 2016, a year after Lambert’s divorce from Blake Shelton.
“It wasn’t a really good time for her to do it, but she dropped everything and showed up,” Prine shared in a 2016 interview with People. “I let her pick the song, because of all the stuff that was going on in the newspapers. I didn’t want to ask her to come in and do a divorce song, or to do a sad song, I said, ‘You can pick a sad one or a happy one and I’ll go along with it.'”
The revered songwriter died in April 2020 at the age of 73 due to complications after contracting COVID-19. Months before his death, Prine was bestowed with the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award at the 2020 ceremony.