Watch Lainey Wilson Pay Tribute to Toby Keith With a Stunning “How Do You Like Me Now” Cover at the 2024 CMT Music Awards

Lainey Wilson took the stage for the second time during the 2024 CMT Music Awards to pay tribute to late country superstar Toby Keith. She injected her fiery attitude into one of Keith’s early hits during the star-studded musical tribute. She knocked a performance of “How Do You Like Me Now” out of the park to honor the late legend.

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This song plays like Keith’s middle finger to everyone who doubted him when he was young and chasing a dream. While the song’s narrator is focused on a crush from high school who never gave him the time of day, it is easy to imagine that the song had a broader meaning behind it. After all, everyone who has ever chased a dream has had detractors. At the same time, those who finally start living the dream are more than entitled to an “I told you so.”

“A lot of people become successful after they’ve been told they won’t ever be. So people can relate to this,” Keith said of the song in 2000. “It can be about an old flame or a boss or a teacher—whatever it means to each individual,” he added. “It was a fun song to write.”

Lainey Wilson’s Stellar Toby Keith Tribute

Wilson moved to Nashville more than a decade ago and has been fighting tooth and nail to get to the top of the country music mountain. She no doubt had plenty of nay-sayers telling her and everyone who would listen that she wouldn’t make it. Now, she’s there. That and the fiery presence that she brings to the stage, made it sound like she meant every syllable of the song. Seeing her knock this one out of the park was the highlight of the musical tribute to Keith. Check it out below.

More About Toby Keith’s 1999 Hit

Keith released “How Do You Like Me Now” as the second single from his 1999 album of the same name. The track went to No. 1 on the Billboard Country Songs chart and stayed there for five weeks. It was Keith’s fourth time at the top of the chart. The track was also a top 40 hit on the Billboard Hot 100. It peaked at No. 31. Additionally, it was one of five Toby Keith songs to chart on the Hot Country Songs chart again after Keith’s passing in February.

Featured Image by Rick Kern/Getty Images for CMT

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