See Photos Of Jelly Roll, Lainey Wilson, Elle King, Tim McGraw And More Backstage At 2023 CMA Fest

The CMA Fest Special will air on Wednesday, July 19 at 8/7c on ABC.

By

Andrew Wendowski

Andrew Wendowski is the Founder and CEO of Music Mayhem. As a 29-year-old entrepreneur, he oversees content as the Editor-In-Chief for the independent brand. Wendowski, who splits time between Philadelphia, Penn., and Nashville, Tenn., has an extensive background in multimedia. Before launching Music Mayhem in 2014, he worked as a highly sought-after photojournalist and tour photographer, collaborating with such labels as Interscope Records and Republic Records. He has captured photos of some of the biggest names, including Taylor Swift, Metallica, Harry Styles, P!NK, Morgan Wallen, Carrie Underwood, The Rolling Stones, Madonna, Shania Twain, and hundreds more. Wendowski’s photos and freelance work have appeared nationwide and can be seen everywhere from ad campaigns to various publications, including Billboard and Rolling Stone. When Wendowski isn’t running Music Mayhem, he enjoys spending time at concerts, traveling, and capturing photos.

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Posted on July 19, 2023

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Jelly Roll, Lainey Wilson, Elle King, Tim McGraw, Faith Hill, Megan Moroney; John Shearer

On Wednesday evening (July 19), country music’s biggest stars will be taking over ABC for CMA Fest, a three-hour country music extravaganza. 

The music event of the summer will feature 30+ performances and surprise collaborations from some of Country music’s hottest stars, including Alabama, Jason Aldean, Dierks Bentley, Leon Bridges, Luke Bryan, Eric Church, Luke Combs, Dan + Shay, Jordan Davis, Vince Gill, HARDY, Tyler Hubbard, Jelly Roll, Cody Johnson, Elle King, Miranda Lambert, Avril Lavigne, Little Big Town, Ashley McBryde, Reba McEntire, Tim McGraw, Jo Dee Messina, Old Dominion, Jon Pardi, Carly Pearce, Darius Rucker, Tanya Tucker, Keith Urban, and Lainey Wilson.

Bentley, King, and Wilson will host CMA Fest on ABC. 

RELATED: CMA Fest ABC Special: Full List Of Songs, Performers, Hosts & More

Lainey Wilson, Dierks Bentley, Elle King; Photo Courtesy of CMA/ABC
Lainey Wilson, Dierks Bentley, Elle King; Photo Courtesy of CMA/ABC

The special was filmed at the 50th Anniversary of CMA Fest in Downtown Nashville at Nissan Stadium during the star-studded, four-day festival, which took place Thursday, June 8 through Sunday, June 11.

For many artists, CMA Fest gives them a chance to showcase gratitude for the fans who have supported them along the way. 

“CMA Fest to me is the most unique experience and weekend in any genre of music because we as artists count on the fans to make our worlds go ‘round and they do and what it means to me is to be able to just give back to them and love on them and give them unique experiences and just say thank you, thank you for all of my dreams coming true,” Carly Pearce shared at the festival.

Carly Pearce; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA/CMA Fest
Carly Pearce; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA/CMA Fest

It’s also a chance for the artists to reconnect with each other since they are usually on tour across the country and rarely have the opportunity to meet up.

While fans will get to re-live what happened in front of the cameras at CMA Fest on Wednesday during the ABC special, here’s a look at what happened behind the scenes at the festival.

See Behind-The-Scenes Photos From CMA Fest Below

Luke Bryan, Dierks Bentley, Elle King; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Luke Bryan, Dierks Bentley, Elle King; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Faith Hill, Elle King; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Faith Hill, Elle King; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Elle King, Tim McGraw; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Elle King, Tim McGraw; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Faith Hill, Megan Moroney; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Faith Hill, Megan Moroney; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Luke Bryan; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Luke Bryan; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
BRELAND, Elle King; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
BRELAND, Elle King; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Dierks Bentley, Ashley McBryde, Elle King; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Dierks Bentley, Ashley McBryde, Elle King; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Nate Smith; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Nate Smith; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Elle King, Dierks Bentley; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Elle King, Dierks Bentley; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Jon Pardi; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Jon Pardi; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Karen Fairchild, Alana Springsteen; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Karen Fairchild, Alana Springsteen; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Little Big Town; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Little Big Town; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Brittany Aldean, Jason Aldean; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Brittany Aldean, Jason Aldean; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Alana Springsteen; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Alana Springsteen; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Devin Dawson, HARDY, Lauren Alaina; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Devin Dawson, HARDY, Lauren Alaina; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
HARDY, Caleigh Ryan; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
HARDY, Caleigh Ryan; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Miranda Lambert, Leon Bridges; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Miranda Lambert, Leon Bridges; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Cody Johnson; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Cody Johnson; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Dierks Bentley, Jelly Roll; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Dierks Bentley, Jelly Roll; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Jelly Roll, Lainey Wilson; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Jelly Roll, Lainey Wilson; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Dan Smyers, Abby Smyers; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Dan Smyers, Abby Smyers; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Lainey Wilson, Dierks Bentley, Elle King; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Lainey Wilson, Dierks Bentley, Elle King; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Luke Gill, Vince Gill; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Luke Gill, Vince Gill; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Vince Gill; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Vince Gill; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Jordan Davis, Dierks Bentley; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Jordan Davis, Dierks Bentley; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Luke Combs, Nicole Hocking; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Luke Combs, Nicole Hocking; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Carly Pearce; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Carly Pearce; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Elle King, Jelly Roll; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA
Elle King, Jelly Roll; Photo Courtesy of John Shearer/Getty Images for CMA

50th Anniversary Of CMA Fest

CMA Fest marked its 50th Anniversary with a record-breaking celebration in Nashville, June 8 through June 11. 

The four-day event hosted an estimated daily attendance of over 90,000, a 12% increase from 2022, according to the Country Music Association. Additionally, the nightly concerts at Nissan Stadium saw 10% growth from 2022.

The festival also hosted fans from all 50 states as well as a record-breaking 51 countries.

“What a weekend! As we’ve spent the past year reflecting on this milestone celebration, one theme has persisted—the incredible connection between Country Music fans and the artists,” Sarah Trahern, CMA Chief Executive Officer, shared in a statement. “It’s magical because it still matters after all these years. From first-timers to legends, so many artists started as fans—some as far back as Fan Fair. Almost every artist who performs during the festival has had their own experience as a fan, so for many of them, taking the stage at CMA Fest is a full-circle moment. We only get the chance to celebrate our 50th anniversary once, and to do so in such an impactful way has meant the world to us. Thank you, Country Music!”

More than 300 acts took part in CMA Fest this year, including performances at the Chevy Riverfront Stage, Dr Pepper Amp Stage, Chevy Vibes Stage, Maui Jim Reverb Stage and the Hard Rock Stage as well as Fan Fair X inside Music City Center.

The CMA Fest Special will air on Wednesday, July 19 at 8/7c on ABC and will be available to watch on-demand on Thursday, July 20 via Hulu.

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Written by

Andrew Wendowski is the Founder and CEO of Music Mayhem. As a 29-year-old entrepreneur, he oversees content as the Editor-In-Chief for the independent brand. Wendowski, who splits time between Philadelphia, Penn., and Nashville, Tenn., has an extensive background in multimedia. Before launching Music Mayhem in 2014, he worked as a highly sought-after photojournalist and tour photographer, collaborating with such labels as Interscope Records and Republic Records. He has captured photos of some of the biggest names, including Taylor Swift, Metallica, Harry Styles, P!NK, Morgan Wallen, Carrie Underwood, The Rolling Stones, Madonna, Shania Twain, and hundreds more. Wendowski’s photos and freelance work have appeared nationwide and can be seen everywhere from ad campaigns to various publications, including Billboard and Rolling Stone. When Wendowski isn’t running Music Mayhem, he enjoys spending time at concerts, traveling, and capturing photos.

See more posts from Andrew Wendowski