Students to perform at CMA Music Fest with David Nail - WKRN News 2

2014 CMA Music Festival

Students to perform at opening CMA Music Fest night with David Nail

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  • CMA Music Festival

    CMA Music Festival

    The 43rd Annual CMA Music Festival takes over downtown Nashville June 5 through June 8.
    INSIDE: Daily lineup, ticket information and more
    More >>
    The 43rd Annual CMA Music Festival takes over downtown Nashville June 5 through June 8.
    INSIDE: Daily lineup, ticket information and more
    More >>

The countdown to the annual CMA Music Festival is on.

In just one week, a group of students from Nashville School of Arts, led under the direction of Walter Bitnerwill, kick off festivities at LP Field with country singer David Nail.

The opportunity is a true reflection of what the CMA Music Festival's "Keep the Music Playing" program is all about, supporting music in Metro schools.

Music student Mignon Grabois told Nashville's News 2 it's an experience that will forever change their future.

"There's this special bond that everybody has and being able to do this, performing on LP with a group like this it just makes everything that much better because we all share the same love for the music," Grabois explained.

Thursday morning Nail, who is known for his songs "Let It Rain" and "Red Light," headed back to high school to rehearse with NSA's Chamber Choir.

With a father as a high school band director, Nail said he spent his teen years in a choir standing in a very similar room as the students.

"Every time we just ran through it I got goose bumps, you know four or five different times and to be honest that first time it was kind of tough for me to keep it together just because I think everything that this song is, it's all about this right here," Nail told Nashville's News 2.

The artists at CMA Music Festival perform for free. All the money raised goes to the "Keep the Music Playing" program.

Nashville School of the Arts is just one of 80 local schools that benefit from the festival.

The Country Music Association said performances, such as the upcoming one featuring Nail and the Nashville students, is a great way to get the community involved in the festival.

"There is no better way to do that than getting students involved and seeing the instruments in their hands that keep the music playing has put there and just seeing the smiles on their faces and them using their talents in a way that kind of link the festival with what's going on in the community," said Matt Seaton with the CMA.

Last year's CMA Music Festival raised $1.4 million dollars for worthy causes.

A total of $1.2 million went to the Nashville Foundation for Public Education and the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum received $200,000.

For more information on the CMA Music Festival, visit

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