Brandi Carlile Brings R&B Singer Monica to the Ryman for ‘Crowded Table’ [Watch]
Brandi Carlile couldn't let her Sunday night (March 28) Ryman Auditorium livestream concert pass without bringing in a special guest for the occasion. R&B singer Monica joined the Americana star during the show for a collaborative rendition of the Highwomen's song "Crowded Table."
"I'm gettin' kinda lonely out here. I think I need to get my friend Monica out to sing this one with me," Carlile told the crowd — some at the Ryman in person and many more watching from home -- as she introduced the song. "Come on, Monica! She's gonna tell you how it is."
Monica led a verse, before she and Carlile harmonized on the song's welcoming chorus: "I want a house with a crowded table / And a place by the fire for everyone ..." Carlile then took lead on the bridge, and they sang the final chorus together once again.
"THE QUEEN!" Carlile shouted in celebration of her duet partner at the song's end.
Monica has been working in music since the early 1990s and has scored a number of hits on the R&B charts. Her mostly widely recognized songs include "The Boy Is Mine," a multi-platinum, Grammy-winning duet with Brandy. According to her Instagram bio, she has a new single, "Trenches," out now, and an album of the same name in the works.
Carlile teased Monica's appearance at her Sunday night show on Instagram a few hours before the concert. In the clip, the two are onstage at the Ryman, and Monica promises to join Carlile for "whatever you want me to do":
"Crowded Table" itself recently won Best Country Song at the 2021 Grammy Awards. Carlile, Natalie Hemby and Lori McKenna co-wrote the song, which appears on the self-titled debut album from the Highwomen, Carlile and Hemby's quartet with Maren Morris and Amanda Shires.
Carlile's Ryman Auditorium concert was originally planned as an audience-less livestream; however, about a week before the show, she opened it up to select fans who had purchased tickets to the livestream and could show proof that they'd received their COVID-19 vaccination.
A portion of proceeds from ticket sales benefited the Rainey Day Fund — which offers assistance to LGBTQ+ artists, artists of color and artists with disabilities — and Fanny's School of Music in East Nashville. CMT sent a matching donation to the Color Me Country Fund, which supports artists of color, and Carlile's Looking Out Foundation matched the donations to all three organizations.
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