Blake Shelton and Devin Dawson kicked off CMA Fest 2019 early with a surprise performance at Shelton's Nashville bar Ole Red on Friday night (May 31). Together with Shelton's band, the two performed Shelton's newest single, "God's Country," which Dawson co-wrote.

Shelton was in town for a Musicians on Call event, the Tennessean reports, and used the opportunity to film his and Dawson's performance at Ole Red for the 2019 CMA Fest television special, which will air later this summer. Shelton, Dawson and company ran through "God's Country" a few times for the taping; readers can press play below to see some of the performance.

Dawson co-wrote "God's Country," a surreal Southern rock anthem with Jordan Schmidt and Hardy. Shelton heard a demo soon after on his Oklahoma farm -- according to Hardy, the country star cut the song within a week of it being written -- and it was love at first listen.

"We wrote it on a Thursday," Dawson tells "Blake heard it, and by Monday he had recorded it. I don't really know how those work. I mean, sometimes songs last three years before they get cut. But this one, I just wrote a song that we loved, and it was the right timing, and the stars aligned. And, I got to sing harmony on it, when we were recording, so it's really special for me. I'm excited about it."

Shelton's CMA Fest 2019 performance of "God's Country" won't be the first time he embraces his inner goth by performing the moody song at a high-profile event: He debuted the single during the 2019 ACM Awards. Dawson did not sing with him that time, however.

CMA Fest 2019 officially begins on Thursday (June 6) and runs through Sunday (June 9). Hundreds of artists will perform throughout Music City during the annual event, both on free daytime stages and at Ascend Amphitheater and Nissan Stadium at night. CMA Fest also includes a number of fan club parties, Fan Fair X and other events.

See Pictures From CMA Fest 2018

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