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It's been a topsy-turvy year for Randy Travis, but the deep-voiced singer proved he's still one of country's pros during a bravura performance with folk-rock group the Avett Brothers.
The North Carolina natives—Randy is from Marshville, N.C.; Scott and Seth Avett hail from Concord, N.C.—took the stage in Franklin, Tenn., this week to film the latest installment of CMT's winning Crossroads series. The taping marked Randy's first appearance in front of the TV cameras since his run-ins  with the law  in August .
Randy was in fine voice, even when not singing. In between collaborations on Avett Brothers songs such as "I and Love and You" and "January Wedding," Randy happily told the assembled crowd stories of his upbringing and even a joke or two—including one about a driver who gets pulled over by the police. It was a humorous moment of self-awareness for the singer, and the audience responded with laughs and cheers.
The rapturous applause, however, was reserved for sterling versions of Randy's hits. “Diggin’ Up Bones” and “Three Wooden Crosses,” both rounded out by the Avetts’ pristine harmonies, were highlights, while the show-closing “Forever and Ever, Amen” sounded less like a 25-year-old hit and more like a promise—one from a grateful Randy to his faithful fans.
Randy and the Avetts’ episode of Crossroads airs Nov. 23 on CMT.