(NEW YORK CITY) — In his first public appearance since the mass shooting in Las Vegas, Jason Aldean opened Saturday Night Live with a speech and a song.
Aldean was onstage at the Harvest 91 Festival in Las Vegas when Stephen Paddock opened fire, killing nearly 60 people and wounding hundreds more. He’s posted several messages online since then, but Saturday night on SNL, he took center stage to comment on the tragedy.
“I’m Jason Aldean,” he began. “This week, we witnessed one of the worst tragedies in American history. Like everyone, I’m struggling to understand what happened that night and how to pick up the pieces and start to heal. So many people are hurting. They’re our children, parents, brothers, sisters, friends — they’re all part of our family.”
He continued, “So I wanna say to them, ‘We hurt for you and we hurt with you.’ But you can be sure that we’re gonna walk through these tough times together, every step of the way. Because when America is at its best, our bond, and our spirit…it’s unbreakable.”
Aldean and his band then kicked into the perfect song, not only given the circumstances, but given the fact that this past week, we also lost a music legend who inspired both rock and country musicians. He played Tom Petty’s “I Won’t Back Down.”
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