Jason Aldean Opens SNL With Address to America About the Las Vegas Shooting

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There was no time for Trump jokes on SNL this week. Taking over the show’s cold-open duties in lieu of a silly comedy bit, Jason Aldean — who was onstage performing at the Route 91 Harvest Festival in Las Vegas when the tragic attack occurred last week — spoke to the country about how we can begin to heal. “Like everyone, I’m struggling to understand what happened that night, and how to pick up the pieces and start to heal,” he said. “So many people are hurting. There are children, parents, brothers, sisters, friends. They’re all part of our family. So I want to say to them: We hurt for you, and we hurt with you. You can be sure that we’re going to walk through these tough times together, every step of the way. When America is at its best, our bond and our spirit, it’s unbreakable.” To add another layer of poignancy to his words, Aldean then performed a rendition of Tom Petty’s classic feel-good anthem “I Won’t Back Down” — Petty unexpectedly died earlier this week at the age of 66. No, we definitely won’t back down.

SNL: Jason Aldean Speaks Beautifully, Sings About Las Vegas