Darius Rucker got a big surprise when he stopped by the Kelly Clarkson Show recently.

While talking about his new album Carolyn's Boy, the country singer was unexpectedly presented with the 2023 CMA Foundation Humanitarian Award.

"Wow, I really did not know that," he says, as he sits dumbfounded with the trophy in his hand (watch video below).

Host Kelly Clarkson was in on the secret, and primed the "Wagon Wheel" singer for the surprise by asking him about the lessons he learned from his mother, Carolyn. It was a fitting conversation, since his album is dedicated to his late mom, who died in the '90s. When he brought up his mother's humanitarian spirit, it was an easy way to transition to the award presentation.

"When I was a kid, she instilled in us that you help people — not people that are less fortunate — you help people that need help," he remarks.

Rucker then launched into a childhood story about his brother mowing the lawn for the wife of a Navy veteran who was deployed. As a thank you, the woman gave Rucker's brother $10.

"And he came home bragging about the $10 he got, and my mom whooped his butt and told him, 'You take that $10 back down and you give it back to her because we don't help people for money — we help people to help people,'" he recalls.

The "Beers and Sunshine" singer has been involved with St. Jude Children's Research Hospital ever since his first visit to their facility 15 years ago. Rucker was inspired to launch his "Darius and Friends" charity auction, concert and golf tournament, which has raised more than $3.6 million for St. Jude over the years.

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