Despite thunder, lightning and scattered rain, thousands of country music fans made the pilgrimage to Music City for 2019’s CMA Fest.
For the 48th annual CMA Fest downtown Nashville received the usual festival makeover, replacing the bumper-to-bumper traffic of Broadway with vendors, food trucks and 11 different stages.
This year’s lineup, with over 100 artists, featured the biggest names in country music — Luke Bryan, Florida Georgia Line and Luke Combs — as well as rising stars like the mullet-rockin’ Morgan Wallen and iHeartRadio’s Best New Country Artist Jordan Davis.
The festival’s lineup featured plenty of Belmont alumni, performing all over Nashville in stadiums and honky tonks. Tyler Hubbard and Brian Kelley, from Florida Georgia Line and 2009 Belmont alumni, played to over 50,000 fans at Nissan Stadium. 2015 alum Devin Dawson packed the steps of the Riverfront Park for his daytime performance at the Chevy Riverfront Stage. The Nashville Acoustic Corner inside the Bridgestone Arena hosted 2018 graduate Anna Vaus for an intimate performance.
Jessie Ritter, a 2015 Belmont alum, was thrilled to go from a fan to a performer at CMA Fest.
“To be a part of it this year has been awesome,” she said. “It’s just been super, super fun.”
The biggest festival in country music will return next year on June 4, with tickets going on sale Aug. 2.
This article written by Joe Bendekovic. Video produced and edited by Colby Crosby. Photos by Colby Crosby and Joe Bendekovic.