They first met at an airport when Taylor Swift was an unsigned teenager and Kenny Chesney was, well ... Kenny Chesney.

The roles haven't reversed, but she's more than leveled the playing field. Still, the grateful country-turned-pop singer kept Kenny in mind and surprised him to turn in one of the more memorable performances on his Live in No Shoes Nation album.


"She surprised me on my birthday and we were able to capture that moment for this record," Chesney tells Taste of Country Nights, referring to the opening night of the Big Revival Tour in 2015.

The album includes 29 live cuts from a decade of touring. Chesney says he started recording every live show about five years ago but did so sporadically before that. "Big Star" is Swift's story, Chesney says. She lived the small town girl dream of moving to Music City and catching her star, so it was fitting for her to appear on that song with him.

"I wanted to surprise the audience. She was surprising me and I wanted to surprise the audience and honestly, Taylor Swift needs no introduction," he says.

The 2017 CMA Awards nominee says he will not be attending the CMAs. He may be in the Virgin Islands, helping to rebuild a hurricane-ravaged community that's been his second home for years. Fans can help support Chesney's efforts by giving to the Love for Love City Foundation.

"I've been back and it's not pretty," Chensey told ToC Nights. "It's crippled and bleeding."

Taste of Country Nights is a syndicated night show which airs on nearly 100 radio stations nationwide. Listen to highlights on iTunes or your Android device.

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