Luke Combs wasn’t scheduled to appear on “Jimmy Kimmel Live” on Oct. 2. He was supposed to tape a performance to air at a later date. But after the devastating massacre in Las Vegas on Oct. 1, the game changed. And when Jimmy requested a special performance from Luke to air during the broadcast, honoring those who lost their lives in the shooting, the country singer solemnly agreed.
In a post on his Instagram page, Luke offered words of comfort. “Music is a healer,” he wrote. “In this overwhelming darkness, I believe we will find hope when we rise together. Evil will not win. Fans, it is the blessing of my life to get to make music with you and for you every day. Tonight, may we find light and hope in the chaos.”
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Tonight, the band and I were scheduled to tape a performance at @jimmykimmel Live! to air on TV later this fall. While we were on set today, Jimmy asked if I would be willing to perform a song tonight (11:35|10:35c on ABC) to honor last night’s fallen; I immediately agreed and we will be playing “Used to You.” Music is a healer. In this overwhelming darkness, I believe we will find hope when we rise together. Evil will not win. Fans, it is the blessing of my life to get to make music with you and for you every day. Tonight, may we find light and hope in the chaos.
The lyrics of the somber “Used to You” were a perfect reflection of the disbelief and heartbreak that many are feeling in the aftermath of the mass shooting that took the lives of 59 concertgoers and sent more than 500 to the hospital.
Luke’s performance followed one of the most heartbreaking opening monologues we’ve ever seen from Jimmy. His eyes glistening with tears, and barely able to greet the studio audience, the talk show host’s voice broke as he spoke about the tragic events.
“No one could have ever expected something that terrible would happen, but it did,” he said. “A very sick person smuggled 17 guns into his hotel room and smashed out the windows, started firing indiscriminately from the 32nd floor through a crowd of 22,000 people across the street. As a result of that, this morning, we’ve got children without parents, fathers without sons, mothers without daughters. We lost two police officers. We lost a nurse from Tennessee, a special ed teacher from a local school here in Manhattan Beach, [California]. It’s the kind of thing the makes you want to throw up or give up. It’s too much to even process.”
Jimmy then made a plea for greater gun control, sharing a photo of the 56 senators who voted against a change in gun laws, which would have increased safety factors in the process of purchasing a gun.
He also apologetically and tearfully added, “I want this to be a comedy show. I hate talking about stuff like this. I just want to laugh about things every night, but it seems to [be] becoming increasingly difficult lately. It feels like someone has opened a window into hell.” Watch his opening remarks in the video below.