Maren Morris is grateful to be not only following in Alicia Keys' footsteps, but also to have stood beside her on the Grammys stage.
Fresh from her Country Solo Performance win for "My Church," the 26-year-old told reporters in the press room that teaming up with Alicia for their duet of "Once" at Sunday's show felt "really natural."
The pair previously collaborated for a December 2016 episode of "CMT Crossroads," an experience which Maren said helped her and Alicia's Grammys partnership fall into place.
Despite Maren's status as a burgeoning country star, she explained that she and R&B queen Alicia have no trouble blending their respective genres.
"We sort of always joke that country and soul are cousins," she said.
Plus, Maren added, Alicia knows what it's like to be a Grammys newcomer in the spotlight.
"She's stood in my shoes here before, as a Best New Artist nominee," Maren said, adding that it was "cool to be sort of ushered in" by the "Girl on Fire" songstress.
When asked by a reporter if she was anxious before joining Alicia front and center on music's biggest night, Maren revealed that her jitters were focused elsewhere.
"I was more nervous about walking up the steps to accept my award and not falling over my dress," she chuckled.
"Luckily, that did not happen," she added. "But the night is young."
-- Erin Biglow