Country Music Reaches New Heights in the U.K. and Ireland Scott Frans March 14, 2017 NASHVILLE—As Country Music fans packed the sold-out C2C Festival in the U.K. and Ireland last week, the Country Music Association returned overseas to present three CMA International Awards, host industry executives to reveal new data illustrating the millennial push behind the U.K.’s Country Music growth, and discuss the future of Country Music internationally. CMA kicked off the highly-anticipated weekend with a sold-out, standing room only CMA Songwriters Series at indigo at the O2 in London. CMA presented 2017 International Awards to three U.K.-based recipients over the course of the weekend: Bob Harris, winner of the International Country Broadcaster Award; The Shires, who received the Jeff Walker Global Country Artist Award; and Richard Wootton, receiving the Wesley Rose International Media Achievement Award. CMA International Awards are voted on by CMA International Membership, as well as a panel of domestic U.S.-based industry. Hosting tens of thousands of raving fans between Dublin, Glasgow, and London, the fifth annual C2C Festival began Friday and featured many of the top names in Country Music including Brothers Osborne, Cam, Dan + Shay, Hunter Hayes, Reba, Maren Morris, Jennifer Nettles, Brad Paisley, Darius Rucker, Marty Stuart, Chris Young, Zac Brown Band, and more. C2C is presented by AEG Europe and SJM Concerts in association with CMA and remains the U.K.’s largest Country Music festival. Country Music is rapidly gaining popularity among millennials in the U.K. and CMA’s research team unveiled studies demonstrating that trend during the Nashville Music and Brand Forum Friday in London. The guest list included a who’s who of international music and entertainment executives, U.K. brands, and industry tastemakers. Panelists and attendees included representatives from BBC, Sky TV, Spotify, Amazon Music, Apple Music, AEG, and more. Guests also enjoyed acoustic performances by Drake White and Charlie Worsham. To learn more about the study, visit cmaworld.com/research. CMA members can view exclusive statistics at my.CMAworld.com. Amidst the festivities, CMA also hosted the U.K. Advisory Council to discuss the future of Country Music abroad. Guests included CMA Board members, promoters, record labels, talent agents, performing rights societies, and representatives from BBC Radio 2 and C2C. CMA Songwriters Series launched the weekend of music Thursday with a sold-out show at indigo at The O2 in London featuring some of the most award-winning, in-demand tunesmiths in Country Music: five-time CMA Awards winner and host Kristian Bush, former CMA Musician of the Year Mac McAnally, reigning CMA New Artist of the Year Morris, former CMA Song of the Year Liz Rose, and rising star White. For more information, visit CMAworld.com.