It’s that time of the year again! The 2017 CMA Music Festival begins this week in Nashville, and the stars are coming out to perform and hangout with their fans. You can find out where your favorite artists are playing, if go to cmaworld.com here.
Darius Rucker talks about the amazing things about CMA Music Festival.
Darius Rucker (CMA Music Fest) OC: …awesome. :48
“Music Fest is like nothing else. I say all the time that country music is the only genre that could have something like that. It’s truly amazing, when I come that weekend, people are everywhere and they want to be your best friend. It’s always cool and I love coming here. The thing that always gets me is the show. The fact that you can get that many superstars at one show all playing for free, for the same goal, to entertain those people that are in that stadium that come here for the whole week from all over the world. They come here for one week to see country music, and it’s amazing that those artists say on Friday and Saturday night, this is country music come on out. That’s awesome.”
Dierks (fans) OC: …commitment. [laughs] :22
“I know a lot of the early fans by name, because we played a lot of shows at a lot of small venues where we’d be around a lot after the shows. I’m not gonna say her name ‘cause I don’t know if she’d want me to or not, but she has like a dog print of Jake, my dog’s Jake, but she has this dog print on her shoulder with my name in the middle of the tattoo. So, tattoos are always, that’s a big deal when somebody gets your name tattooed on part of their body or something. It’s kind of a scary thing, because it’s kind of a lifelong commitment. [laughs]”
Dierks Bentley (signing a baby’s head) OC: …child’s brain. :13
“A baby’s head with a sharpie. Yeah, like a two-week old baby. I didn’t want to do it. I didn’t want to do it. The woman was like, ‘Please.’ I was like, ‘Alright.’ The head at that point is so vulnerable, transparent, so I’m just hoping they didn’t get any ink in the child’s brain.”
Easton Corbin (CMA Music Fest) OC: …wouldn’t work. :25
“CMA Music Fest, it’s a great opportunity to hang out with your fans and stuff. The great thing about the country genre is it’s one of the only genres that really has a festival dedicated to their fans, and I think that’s great because without the fans we wouldn’t be here. They’re the ones that make it work. Without the fans to buy records and listen to the radio and come to the shows, it just wouldn’t work.”
Eric Church (CMA Music Fest) OC: …barrage of music.
“Well, I think it’s what makes country music unique. Find me another format that happens in, it’s just not something that happens. Country music is the one for mat where the fans…the music is really about them. And we’re them; we’re not different than them. We’re not a lot of the rock stars and a lot of the other guys where they’re their own person, they’re their own agenda…they’re not like the people that are listening to them. It’s different in country, we are. We come from there, we are that. I think it’s just a great thing for them to be able to come to our town and to get just this barrage of music.”
Eric Paslay (1st autograph) OC: …first autograph. :42
“The first autograph that I ever got was in Branson, Missouri, and it was Shoji Tabuchi, and he’s a great fiddle player, and I always remember that, you know if you go to Branson, you know who he is. But I was a 9, 10 year old kid, and I always remember that. Every time I meet a kid, I don’t know if it’s their first concert. It could be their 100-thousandth, but whenever I sign an autograph for a kid, I really make sure it’s special and memorable, and with anybody, but especially with kids. I still have that Shoji Tabuchi autograph, you know? Because it meant that much. I didn’t know he was until we saw him, but he tore the place down playing the “Orange Blossom Special.”
Jon Pardi (performing live) OC: …really loud. :19
“To get up on stage, it feels like home. It’s like, ‘Yeah, this is where I want to be.’ I’d rather be there than a lot of places. I love just getting up on stage not matter where it is. It’s fun to get up and entertain people and have a good time, make everybody feel a part of the show and get up there and play my guitar really loud.”
Josh Turner (weirdest things he’s signed) OC: …Sharpie, though. :10
“A toothpick; an unused toothpick, let me throw that out there, an unused toothpick. It was quite challenging, actually, and it didn’t look anything like my autograph. It took a really small Sharpie, though.”
Keith Urban (CMA Music Fest) OC: …love it. :25
“I love it! It’s like summer camp. I mean, it is! It’s a chance to obviously see a lot of people I don’t normally see. I don’t know. It’s just palpable. Since Fan Fair, it’s just been that sort of week-plus of energy; the town just explodes, and what it is we love about this genre and the community aspect of it. I always love it.”
Kip Moore (favorite thing about performing live) OC: …it gets. :17
“I’d say that my favorite thing about being on the road is the fact that I get to play music each and every night with my best friends. There’s nothing better than that than playing with your best buddies and seeing the joy that you bring to other people’s faces playing the music that you love to play. I mean that’s the best it gets.”
Lady Antebellum (Music Fest) 3 OC: …really cool. :25
“When you see the same fans, these die-hard fans that camp out outside the radio remotes and the hotels, and all of these places, and you start recognizing them, I think that’s when you start going ‘Wow, this is a special and unique industry.’ You talk to them by name and give them a hug. I can’t think of any other genre that has that kind of connection. The people that come back the same time every year, you know where they are going to be. It’s really kind of a fun thing. It’s really cool.”
Lauren Alaina (fans) OC: …me wrong. :30
“My fans helped me grow as a person in lots of different ways. I grew up in front of them. I was 15 on American Idol, so they watched me grow up and kind of helped me mold into who I am, because I worked at CiCi’s Pizza, and now I’m traveling all over the place. It’s like I learned responsibility through all of it. I learned who I am as a person, ‘cause my fans have made me stronger, they’ve made me more responsible, they made me believe in myself 10 times more, because I thought I was going home every week on American Idol, and they proved me wrong.”
Little Big Town (CMA Music Fest) OC: (Phillip) …the best, man. 1:43
Kimberly – We played at the fairgrounds. I guess it was the last year at the fairgrounds. We had just gotten our record deal.
Phillip – I remember we were just about to walk out on stage, and we had to play acoustic. I mean there was no backing band,
Kimberly – we were at Mercury. They wanted us to play before Wynonna sang.
Phillip – I remember, my hair was short and Wynonna walked by and tuffed my hair and was like, “Oh that’s cute…cute red hair boy.” [laugh] I was like, “Oh great.” Like little puppy dog, you’re gonna be ok kid.
Kimberly – We were nervous.
Karen – Oh my gosh, were so nervous. We were so green.
Kimberly – We didn’t have many songs at that point. Maybe three songs, which is what we sang. It was all we knew at the time which is what we had worked up. Because literally we got our record deal in May and that was June.
Karen – And they were like, “Why don’t you guys sing a couple songs?” And, we’re like, “Good because a couple is what we know.” That was fun. And then moving form that to the stadium shows, to me that the most fun you can ever have…CMA Fest, Stadium shows. It is an energy unlike anything else. Like last year Kimberly and I sang with Keith on “I get by with a Little Help from my Friends,” and Tony Brown was on piano…
Phillip – All star band.
Kimberly – It was incredible.
Karen – It was over the top and I could just come out of my skin at those moments.
Kimberly – Me too.
Karen – It’s like you just want to float.
Phillip – And it’s like the best country crowd you could ever compile. Every country fan from all over the world wants to be there. That’s like the crux of country music awesomeness. I’m telling you it is the best fun.
Karen – It’s the best feeling out there.
Kimberly – They let them line up and all come across the stage so you have all these people that are so giddy, crazy giddy, because they get to walk up close to the stage.
Phillip – And they’re waving and their arms are about to fall off. They’re just so excited. It’s the best.”
Luke Bryan (CMA Music Fest) OC: …for this week. :33
“It’s a great week. I truly love this week for hundreds of reasons. I always remember my first ones and starting out and doing River Stages and always dreaming of coming over here and performing at LP Field (now Nissan Stadium) and all of the stuff building the fan base early in the week. It’s an amazing week for Nashville, and it’s a great week for me. And then I get to be home and do all this stuff. It’s always been a fun week for me. A lot of my family always comes in for this week.”
Sam Hunt (CMA Music Fest-move to Nashville) OC: …good week for Nashville. :38
“You know, I was here several years ago for the first time for CMA Fest as a fan. I came out to the show, did the full experience, and it really was one of the big reasons I decided to move to Nashville. It kind of made the idea of being a songwriter more tangible and realistic, and also I fell in love with the city, Nashville, so I knew it’d be a place I’d be happy living, and also because of the music. So, yeah, that week here really inspired my move here, and it was a significant part of my life. But since then, I’ve been to every CMA Fest since, I think, and it’s a good week for Nashville.”