Brad Paisley recently traveled to Kyiv, Ukraine with a group of U.S. senators, and while he was there, he put on an acoustic performance in front of destroyed pieces of the opposing Russian fleet.
Of course, Russia and Ukraine have been involved in combat since February of last year when Russia invaded the Ukrainian border.
The country music artist accompanied a bi-partisan group of politicians consisting of Democratic senator Mark Kelly of Arizona, Democrat Joe Manchin of West Virginia, and Republican Lisa Murkowski of Alaska.
Paisley stepped into Kyiv’s Mikhailovsky Square and played two songs as stood at the capital of Ukraine. The first tune was an acoustic version of his Ukraine-focused single “Same Here,” and his second song choice was a Ukrainian song which he sang in the native language.
Paisley posted a video of his solo performance on Instagram with the caption:
“Same Here, from St. Michael’s Square in Kyiv, Ukraine.
Emotional experience seeing all this first hand. So much more to share.”
As for his second performance, it was pretty interesting seeing the 3-time Grammy-award winning country music artist sing in a different language.
A video of the native folk song was posted on Twitter with the caption:
“I bet you’ve never heard Brad Paisley sing in Ukrainian”
Brad Paisley and Senator Manchin shared the same home state of West Virginia and gifted Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky with a WVU ball cap.
Though it was a nice gesture, the look on the face of the Ukrainian President sums it up perfectly: “Is this necessary?”
Looks like he just committed to the Mountaineers…
Paisley was met with some criticism when he first released the Ukrainian-centered song “Same Here,” so much so that he turned off the comments on his Instagram.
He released the tribute on the one year anniversary of the Russian invasion, and the song featured audio from the Ukrainian President thanks to recorded Zoom audio.
Some thought he was overstepping his reach with the song, pandering to a political audience to revive his vanishing career, while others believed it was a touching tribute to the brave people of war-time Ukraine.
However, with this recent trip to Kyiv, Paisley clearly believes in his stance and himself.
Although… he could probably brush up on his John Denver lyrics…
The reactions were pretty mixed, with a number of folks wondering what the hell Brad Paisley was even doing there, and others, applauding the move:
Haven’t those poor people suffered enough?
— Marc Stein (@mastein) April 13, 2023