Carly Pearce Remembers Why Her Mom Cried Over 'What He Didn't Do'

Photo: Getty Images

Carly Pearce’s “What He Didn’t Do” music video was so powerful that it reduced her mother to tears.

Pearce, who previously shared the symbolism of the project, reflected on the moment she showed it to her mom, and her mom’s unforgettable response. The award-winning country star said, per her record label, that “I thought that she would really love it just because it’s so beautiful. And she started crying when it was over, and she told me that she didn’t like it. And I asked her why, and she said because it’s too real of what happened. And I was kind of like, ‘That’s great, Mom. That’s exactly what I was lookin’ for. Thank you.’ But as a mother I think she knew what I was trying to convey throughout the video, and I think it took her to a real emotional place of knowing that I really did feel like I was drowning.”

What He Didn’t Do” premiered in October, as Pearce prepared to mark the end of her 29: Written in Stone era. It earned Pearce a nod in the Female Video of the Year category at the upcoming 2023 CMT Music Awards. She’s also nominated in the CMT Performance of the Year category with LeAnn Rimes and Ashley McBryde, for their performance of “One Way Ticket” during CMT Crossroads: LeAnn Rimes & Friends. Pearce explained of the video’s symbolism, per her record label:

‍“So, Alexa Campbell, who directed the video, she directed ‘Never Wanted to be That Girl,’ and she actually is also my tour photographer. So, these are the first videos that she’s really done. And when we were out somewhere, I knew that I wanted her to do this video, more so because she kind of lived that portion of my life with me and just knew the ins and outs of where that story really came from. And she came to me and she kind of had a bit of a concept as far as, she said that she saw me underwater. And I feel like she and I kind of talked through that and kinda what that meant. And she showed me some examples of what she was kind of seeing. And we just came to the conclusion of this video would be so powerful to take a more artistic direction, and not just spell it out, having actors or myself play out the song, but really take it to a place of kind of showing that naïve girl that goes into the water, and kind of almost feels like she’s drowning, yet comes back out, almost like as a rebirth, crawling her way to the shore, and being better for the hardship in her life.”

Pearce is the latest addition to the all-star iHeartCountry Festival lineup on May 13, at Moody Center in Austin, Texas. Fans across the country will able to tune in to all of the incredible live performances at this year's iHeartCountry Festival as the event will be broadcast on iHeartRadio country stations nationwide, and on as well as the iHeartRadio app on Saturday, May 13th at 8pm ET/5pm PT.

Watch “What He Didn’t Do” here:

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