Hardy Closes Out the 51st Year of CMA Fest with Fans from 46 Countries

photo courtesy of CMA Fest

CMA Fest, the largest and longest-running Country Music festival in the world, hosted its 51st celebration in Nashville this past weekend, running from Thursday, June 6 through Sunday, June 9, ushering in the next 50 years of Country Music connection between artists and their fans.

Fans gathered from all 50 states and 46 countries to fill the festival footprint, which featured multiple stages hosting more than 300 performers, often for capacity crowds. Breakout moments during CMA Fest 2024 included a special conversation with global superstar Dolly Parton at Fan Fair X on Thursday morning to kick off the event. Featuring a Q&A and impromptu sing-alongs, the legendary entertainer attracted thousands of attendees, many of which lined up more than 12 hours in advance.

Shaboozey shut down the streets of Nashville during his set as fans celebrated his debut at CMA Fest. So did Tucker Wetmore, with his performance on Lower Broadway spilling out into the streets. Throughout the entire weekend, artists performed on the Chevy Riverfront Stage, Dr Pepper Amp Stage, Chevy Vibes Stage, Good Molecules Reverb Stage, Hard Rock Stage, Ascend Amphitheater and, of course, Nissan Stadium. Fans also had the opportunity to connect with their favorite artists at the CMA Close Up Stage and Spotlight Stage at Fan Fair X inside Music City Center.

Josh Turner opened the last day of CMA Fest at Nissan Stadium with hits including “Your Man.” Megan Moroney took to the mainstage with some of her newest songs including “Man on the Moon” and “Indifferent.” In addition to their Tom Petty tribute performance, Brothers Osborne ended their set with a mash up of “It Ain’t My Fault” and “Tulsa Time.” Shortly after, Carly Pearce took the stage, including a performance of her new song “truck on fire.” Jackson Dean moved the crowd from the stadium’s center stage with a compelling performance of “Fearless.” Bailey Zimmerman took to the mainstage with hits like “Where It Ends” and “Rock and A Hard Place.” HARDY closed out the 51st CMA Fest with his latest singles “SIX FEET UNDER (CALEIGH’S SONG)” and “PSYCHO.”

CMA Fest performers donate their time so that a portion of ticket proceeds can directly benefit music education initiatives across the country through the CMA Foundation, which was front and center throughout the festival all weekend long. Four marching bands serenaded fans each morning across the footprint. Antioch High School was the first marching band to appear, performing outside Music City Center on Thursday. From Friday until Sunday, students from Stratford Stem Magnet High School, Cane Ridge High School and nonprofit music education organization BandWith Chicago entertained fans while marching through Fan Fair X each morning. Additionally, on Saturday night at Nissan Stadium, eight middle and high school music students from Cane Ridge High School and William Henry Oliver Middle School joined Ashley McBryde and Jelly Roll as the hosting duo spoke about the CMA Foundation’s efforts before helping introduce The War and Treaty. The students’ teachers are two of the CMA Foundation’s 2024 Music Teachers of Excellence—Johnny Croft (Cane Ridge High School) and Samantha Reid (William Henry Oliver Middle School).

See photos from the last night at Nissan Stadium.


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