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Garth Brooks is a big deal. Not only is he a five-time CMA entertainer of the year, but he’s also the best-selling solo country music artist of all time with his seven diamond awards.

That doesn’t mean that the 54-year-old icon doesn’t get star-struck every now and then though. In fact, there’s one such legend that the “Callin’ Baton Rouge” singer says he looks up to. And that’s James Taylor.

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On Nov. 16, Garth took a seat on “Jimmy Kimmel Live!” as part of a two-night stint. During his interview with host Jimmy Kimmel, he shared his admiration for Rock and Roll Hall of Famer James Taylor.

James, who is known for songs like “Fire and Rain,” “You’ve Got a Friend” and “Something in the Way She Moves,” appears on Garth and Trisha Yearwood’s first-ever duets album titled “Christmas Together,” which dropped on Nov. 11. James contributes his talents on the married couple’s version of “What I’m Thankful For.”

“It was awesome,” raved Garth over his collaboration with James. “In the studio you’re sitting in there and there’s two voices you’re hearing — the one that’s coming out of your mouth, and the one that’s in your head. The one in your head is going, ‘Oh my god it’s James Taylor!’ The other one is like, ‘Hey, how’s it going?’”

Garth added, “[James] knows how much I love him. He knows how much everybody loves him. He’s painfully shy, so humble and so sweet, and I think that just makes you love him more.”

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Following Garth’s rave reviews on James, Jimmy grabbed a guitar to see if the country crooner could do his best impression of his musical hero. Sure enough, he did! Before busting out an impromptu line from “What I’m Thankful For,” Garth said, “James is self taught so nobody plays like him, and nobody sings like him.” Oh, but Garth’s imitation was just as amazing!

Aside from Garth’s “Christmas Together” album, he released his 10-disc box set, “Garth Brooks: The Ultimate Collection,” at Target stores nationwide. On Nov. 25, he will release his 11th studio album, “Gunslinger.”

Nashville-based writer and Rare Country contributor Melinda Lorge has always been passionate about country music. Follow her @MelindaLorge and join the conversation @RareCountry.
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