CMA Partners with PBS’ Front and Center

CMA Partners with PBS’ Front and Center

The First CMA Television Events of Their Kind will Feature the Music of Lady Antebellum and a Special 10th Anniversary CMA Songwriters Series Celebration with Dierks Bentley and Nashville’s Top Songwriters

NASHVILLE — CMA will partner with Public Television’s critically-acclaimed concert series “Front and Center” to present two separate hour-long concert specials for the 2014 Fall season. The shows will feature the music of CMA Award winners Lady Antebellum as they are joined by special guests, and a special 10th Anniversary CMA Songwriters Series celebration with CMA Award winner Dierks Bentley joined by top songwriters Jim Beavers, Ross Copperman, Brett James, and Jon Randall. The episodes, which tape later this month in Nashville, are scheduled to air this fall leading up to “The 48th Annual CMA Awards.”

“What began as a discussion to highlight the 10th anniversary of the CMA Songwriters Series is evolving into what we believe can be a long-term partnership that not only highlights the Songwriters Series and our songwriter community on an ongoing basis, but also provides a platform to reach a wider audience through PBS,” said Sarah Trahern, CMA Chief Executive Officer.

“CMA resides at the epicenter of Country Music’s past, present, and future. It is an honor and a privilege to be partnering not only with such a prestigious organization, but with an organization that truly understands the bedrock upon which the genre is built – the songwriters and its performers,” said Don Maggi, Executive Producer, “Front and Center.” “Lady Antebellum and Dierks Bentley are two of Country Music’s best and the shows that have been created for their fans will be shows that nobody will want to miss.”

The Music of Lady Antebellum will include an intimate evening of the trio’s signature hits and a first taste of new music from their upcoming fifth studio album. The group will share personal stories from the road, the writing room, and the events that inspired their music along with special guest songwriters with whom they have worked throughout the course of their career.

Bentley will be joined on stage by songwriters for a special 10th Anniversary CMA Songwriters Series celebration. The “Front and Center” taping will capture a CMA Songwriters Series style round featuring Bentley joined by Beavers (“5-1-5-0” written with and recorded by Bentley, “Red Solo Cup” recorded by Toby Keith); Copperman (“Tip It On Back” recorded by Bentley, “Beat of the Music” recorded by Brett Eldredge); James (“I Hold On” written with and recorded by Bentley, “Jesus Take the Wheel” recorded by Carrie Underwood); and Randall (“Draw Me A Map” written with and recorded by Bentley, “Whiskey Lullaby” recorded by Alison Krauss and Brad Paisley).

“The CMA Songwriters Series is always a really cool gig,” said Bentley. “It’s like everybody in the room is in on a secret or something. You’ve got a couple guys with guitars, telling stories and drinking whiskey — anything can happen!”

The CMA Songwriters Series kicked off the 10th Anniversary season with standing-room-only shows at the Sundance Film Festival in January, and has performed shows in New York and London already in 2014. Other planned performance locations this year include Austin, Chicago, Nashville, New York, and Paradise Island, Bahamas, as part of the Paradise Music Festival Presented by CMA partner HGTV.

For a decade, the CMA Songwriters Series has been exposing fans across the country and the globe to the artisans who, through their craft, pen hits that touch the lives of millions of music fans. Since it began at Joes’ Pub in New York City in 2005, the CMA Songwriter Series has presented more than 75 shows in 13 cities, including Boston, Belfast, Dublin, Los Angeles, Paris, Phoenix, and Washington, D.C. at the renowned Library of Congress.

The series has featured 127 of music’s most gifted storytellers who collectively have 61 CMA Song of the Year nominations. CMA Triple Play Award winner, CMA Board member, and member of the Songwriters Hall of Fame Bob DiPiero has championed and hosted the series since its launch.

“The super fans of Nashville’s elite songwriting community are the artists who record their work,” said DiPiero. “The CMA Songwriters Series showcases that creative interaction between artist and songwriter like no other event in the world.”

Some of the artists that have been part of the series include Bentley, Clint Black, Kix Brooks, Kristian Bush, Kenny Chesney, Billy Currington, Randy Houser, Jamey Johnson, Miranda Lambert, Little Big Town, Patty Loveless, Ronnie Milsap, Kip Moore, David Lee Murphy, Gretchen Peters, Kellie Pickler, The Band Perry, Josh Turner, Underwood, Phil Vassar, and Chris Young.

By CMA