In case you didn’t know, CMA Fest is literally Christmas in June for country music fans. Based in Nashville, TN, fans are able to take over the city for an entire weekend. Broadway gets shut down and stages go up. All day and all night there is live music, meet and greets, giveaways, and my personal favorite- cocktails.
Every country artist you can think of plays CMA Fest. From up and coming artists such as Tyler Rich (from my home of Northern California) to mega stars like Carrie Underwood, they all gather and give fans the time of their life. Quite honestly I do not know what’s better: the meet and greets or the constant music. It is such a fun, unique environment to be a part of. You can see the next big stars from just a few feet away then get their autograph and immediately go to a rooftop bar to gaze at Broadway from a birds eye view, then head over to Nissan stadium at night to catch country’s biggest and best. All parts of this music festival are great, but what’s really cool as a fan is to see how much the artists love it too. It’s not uncommon to see people like Tyler Hubbard of Florida Georgia Line go surprise fans during Russel Dickerson’s set at the Riverfront stage (yes, he did do that this year).
So what was CMA Fest like this year? Well, I was only able to go one night, but I do know this:
- Thomas Rhett returned to host this year, this time with Kelsea Ballerini
- Chris Young brought out Cassadee Pope again to perform ‘Think of You’ on the big stage
- Jon Pardi played the Riverfront Stage on Thursday and CRUSHED it (wasn’t there, but since he’s JP and from NorCal too I know he was amazing)
- Luke Combs played the Riverfront Stage on Sunday for the first time and had the entire crowd singing his latest hit, Hurricane
- Maren Morris was the most bad ass of bad asses and sang Rich like a champ, take a look: https://twitter.com/TheCountryLifer/status/893607972483600384 (WordPress won’t let me post this so check it out on my Twitter)
Of course I am a bit biased because they are my favorite country music artists, but I did go the night that Florida Georgia Line played and as always they were incredible. They played Smooth, which they just released the music video to this week. Check it out here.
I know this was brief, but you need to go to understand the great weekend that CMA Fest is. Learn more about it at http://www.cmaworld.com/cma-music-festival/ and follow the blog for more fun facts!
The Country Lifer