Our Favorite Moments From CMA Music Festival 2017

Garth Brooks performs on night one of CMA Music Festival as a surprise guest. Photo credit: Courtney Davidson

CMA Music Festival is always one of our favorite times of the year when downtown Nashville is filled with country music and fans from around the world converge on our great city.

We thought we would relive some of our favorite moments from the festival in anticipation of it airing on ABC on August 16th beginning at 7pm/central, and because we just want to go back.

1) It put a smile on our faces to walk across the pedistrian bridge first thing on Thursday and spot all those people decked out in pink walking with all those cute dogs in Miranda Lambert’s Muttnation to help get numerous dogs needing a forever home adopted.  Loved the start and could not have asked for a more perfect day to start the festival.

2) Who didn’t love it when Garth Brooks surprised us on night one of the nightly concerts at Nissan Stadium? Always the consummate entertainer, and we loved every minute of it.

3) We loved Warner Music night at Ascend Amphitheatre and hearing new artist Cale Dodds.  Such personality and great songs.  One to watch.

4) Interviewing Luke Pell and getting to see him perform live for the first time on the Chevy Park stage.  Nice, talented guy who most will remember from Jojo’s season of “The Bachelorette”.

5) Attending High Valley’s fan club party at Warner Music on Music Row.  Sometimes it was just nice to get away from all the hustle & bustle downtown.  High Valley especially impressed.  Loved their harmonies and hearing them live for the first time.   They have this great blend of traditional country blended with today’s radio-friendly sound as they incorporate lots of the bluegrass instruments missing from most country artists’ music today.

6) Attending anything over at Warner Music for the Warner Sound during the festival with the cool Bic Lounge offering men free shaves and everyone 21 & up free drinks.  It was very relaxing just being over there.

7) Attending Sofar Nashville, a surprise pop-up show that happened at Warner Music on Music Row.  We especially loved Australian artist Morgan Evans signed to Warner Music and engaged to Kelsea Ballerini.  Great personality, voice, and good music.  It was a relaxing time.

8) City of Hope celebrity softball game is always a fun time, but it sure was hot out there that day.  Still fun and they broke their record for attendance this year.

9) Pandora’s “Sounds Like Country” concert was a fun time.  Boy, that line seemed neverending to get in, but worth it to see RaeLynn, Old Dominion, and Jake Owen at Marathon Music Works.

10) The Pepsi Firehouse was a cool experience with great food, specialty drinks, a chance to hear some new music from a few up and coming artists, and getting to see Devin Dawson perform an intimate set in a very cool setting.

Bonus: Kicking off the festival with Sony’s LANco at Flipside in 12South area enjoying drinks and checking out their new mural inspired by their new single, “American Love Story”, painted by artist Neon Lumberjack.

LANco with mural artist Neon Lumberjack

Don’t miss CMA Music Festival airing on ABC on August 16th at 7pm/central to see many of the nightly performances hosted by Thomas Rhett and Kelsea Ballerini.

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