CMA Fest, “the Ultimate Country Music Fan Experience™” began in 1972 as Fan Fair®, which drew 5,000 fans to Nashville’s Municipal Auditorium. Now in its 47th year, the legendary festival has become the city’s signature Country Music event that hosts in excess of 90,000 fans from all 50 states and two dozen foreign countries. In 2017, CMA Fest featured 11 stages with over 350 artists, 1,100 musicians, and 167 hours of music – all to benefit music education.
Since 2006, CMA and the CMA Foundation have donated more than $20 million to sustainable music education initiatives across the U.S. thanks to the fans who attend CMA Fest and the artists who perform for free. CMA Fest is filmed for a three-hour ABC Television Network special – the only U.S. music festival with an accompanying TV event. 2018 marks the 15th consecutive year of the broadcast.
You really can’t talk about country music without talking abou Charlie Pride. Country Music Hall of Fame member and Recording Academy “Lifetime Achievement Award” recipient Charley Pride recently announced he’ll be performing at the 2018 CMA Fest, on Friday, June 8 at 8:00 pm at Nissan Stadium. Pride will be sharing the stage that evening with a host of other modern country staples including Blake Shelton, Carrie Underwood, and Old Dominion.
Taking the nightly NISSAN STADIUM stage this year are Country Music superstars Kelsea Ballerini, Dierks Bentley, Brothers Osborne, Kane Brown, Luke Bryan, Luke Combs, Dan + Shay, Charles Esten and Friends, Florida Georgia Line, Dustin Lynch, Old Dominion, Jon Pardi, Carly Pearce, Charley Pride, Darius Rucker, Blake Shelton, Ricky Skaggs, Chris Stapleton, Carrie Underwood, Keith Urban, Lee Ann Womack, and Brett Young. Several acts join this year’s Nissan Stadium lineup for the first time with full sets and special performances including Brown, Combs, Dan + Shay, Old Dominion, Pardi, Pearce and Young. In addition, Lauren Alaina and Bebe Rexha will make guest appearances. Stadium gates open daily at 6:00 PM with performances starting at 8:00 PM. Country Music superstar Jason Aldean closes out the first night of CMA Fest Thursday, June 7 with a performance at Nissan Stadium.
The following outdoor daytime performances at Budweiser Forever Country, Riverfront and Breakout stages are free and open to the public (All artist lineups are subject to change):
Always a fan favorite, RIVERFRONT STAGE returns once again with a lineup that will keep crowds rocking from 10:00 AM-5:15 PM each day. Reigning CMA New Artist of the Year Jon Pardi kicks things off Thursday, June 7 (10:00 AM). Additional artists scheduled include A Thousand Horses, Lauren Alaina, Frankie Ballard, Lee Brice, Chase Bryant, Cam, Craig Campbell, Easton Corbin, Jordan Davis, Devin Dawson, Gavin DeGraw, Russell Dickerson, Drake White and The Big Fire, Lindsay Ell, Tyler Farr, Hunter Hayes, Walker Hayes, High Valley, Home Free, LANCO, Chris Lane, LOCASH, Maddie & Tae, Scotty McCreery, William Michael Morgan, Parmalee, Eric Paslay, Carly Pearce, Cassadee Pope, RaeLynn, Michael Ray, Dylan Scott, Canaan Smith, Corey Smith, Granger Smith, The Cadillac Three, Morgan Wallen, and Aaron Watson.
Located in Walk of Fame Park, the BREAKOUT STAGE will entertain crowds daily from 10:30 AM-4:55 PM with performances by Jimmie Allen, Abby Anderson, Kassi Ashton, Drew Baldridge, Chris Bandi, Big Smo, Ashley Campbell, Crowder, Jacob Davis, Delta Rae, Cale Dodds, Adam Doleac, Clare Dunn, Brooke Eden, Riley Green, Trent Harmon, Sundance Head, James Barker Band, Jillian Jacqueline, Krystal Keith and Lance Carpenter, Jon Langston, Love and Theft, Ashley McBryde, Logan Mize, Steve Moakler, Muscadine Bloodline, Jerrod Niemann, Luke Pell, Josh Phillips, Radio Romance, Maggie Rose, Runaway June, Dylan Schneider, Sister Hazel, SmithField, The Wild Feathers, Michael Tyler, Walker McGuire, Waterloo Revival, and Charlie Worsham.
Returning for a second year, the BUDWEISER FOREVER COUNTRY STAGE will take place from 11:00 AM-4:45 PM daily. Featuring some of the biggest names in Country Music from recent decades, this year’s lineup includes Keith Anderson, David Ball, John Berry, BlackHawk, Terri Clark, Mark Collie, Billy Dean, Joe Diffie, Exile, “Forever Country, Never Forgotten: A Tribute to Those Lost from Country Music,” Andy Griggs, Wade Hayes, Ty Herndon, Honky Tonkin’ with Tracy Lawrence (and special guests), Larry Gatlin and the Gatlin Brothers, Little Texas, Lonestar, Mila Mason, Terry McBride, Lorrie Morgan, Heidi Newfield, Jamie O’Neal, Lee Roy Parnell, Restless Heart, Shenandoah, Doug Supernaw, The Bellamy Brothers, Mark Wills, Darryl Worley, and Michelle Wright.
Xfinity Fan Fair X, CMA Fest’s Ultimate Country Music Fan Experience where fans get up close and personal with their favorite artists, returns to Music City Center daily Thursday, June 7 through Sunday, June 10 (9:30 AM-5:00 PM). One of the biggest draws is the Artist of the Day session, which spotlights one of Country Music’s favorite acts each day by offering a glimpse into their careers from the CMA Close Up Stage. Dierks Bentley will appear on Thursday, Luke Bryan on Friday, Dustin Lynch on Saturday and Kelsea Ballerini on Sunday. A limited number of four-day tickets for the nightly performances at Nissan Stadium are still available through the CMA Box Office at 1-800-CMA-FEST, or online at the CMA Fest website.