Thomas Rhett Honors ‘Sesame Street’ at 2019 Kennedy Center Honors
Thomas Rhett joined in the celebration at the 2019 Kennedy Center Honors in Washington, D.C., which aired Sunday (Dec. 15), helping to pay tribute to the legacy of the classic children's TV show, Sesame Street.
The show, lauded by actor Lucy Liu as an "unlikely marriage of academic research and creative genius," introduced Rhett whimsically with all the characters in attendance.
"Elmo, I have a good idea,,,Why don't we introduce the next guest together?" inquired Liu to the beloved red puppet. "Oh! Yeah, Ms. Lucy! We can co-op-er-ate. Yes, just like on Sesame Street," crowed Elmo. "Oh, can Elmo start, please? And now please welcome ACM Male Vocalist of the Year... Mr. Thomas Rhett!"
Rhett, who is no stranger to Sesame Street, was right at home greeting his buddy. "Elmo, how are you?" he asked. "I've been on a lot of roads touring and playing music. But there is no street quite like Sesame Street. Yeah, it's pretty special. Come on, guys. Let's sing 'em a song."
That they did, with Rhett belting out "I want to go to that street where kindness is the way/ Learn new things each and every single day/ See the whole gang and never, never go away, yeah, never go away...'Cause this is my street... Sesame Street."
The Muppets weren't content with just that, however, launching into the classic "Sing a Song," which had everyone in the audience singing out loud and long, "La, la, la la la...La, la, la la la!"
Michael Tilson Thomas, Earth, Wind & Fire and Linda Ronstadt were also among the 2019 Kennedy Center honorees, and several other country stars were on hand to honor Ronstadt's contribution to various forms of popular music.
Trisha Yearwood honored Ronstadt by performing "You're No Good" and "I Don't Know Much," the latter of which featured Aaron Neville. Carrie Underwood took the Kennedy Center stage to perform "Blue Bayou" and "When Will I Be Loved," and she lavished praise on 73-year-old Ronstadt on the red carpet before the ceremony.
"One of the things I always admired about her is her ability to do whatever she wants. She always broke the rules and sang music that she felt like was true to her," Underwood observed (quotes via CNN).
"She was a chameleon," Underwood stated. "She loved music and she sang so many different kinds and genres. She wanted to sing country music, rock music, she would sing Spanish. She is just somebody I think the rest of us should all be more like."
The 2019 Kennedy Center Honors took place at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., on Dec. 8, and aired Sunday (Dec. 15) on CBS.
See Carrie Underwood + Others at the 2019 Kennedy Center Honors