NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — In some ways, 2019 seems like forever ago. That year marked the last CMA Fest, as the pandemic forced cancellations in 2020 and 2021.

Now, Nashville’s biggest summer party returns. The excitement is building with one week to go before CMA Fest 2022, and it’s a welcome relief for performers and organizers alike.

“When we had to postpone fest in March of 2020, it was really hard. The festival was ready to go. All the artists were booked throughout the footprint. All the vendors were on site. We were ready to go. We were within three days of pushing go on our first press release.” said Sarah Trahern, CEO of Country Music Association.

There’s been two years of tough breaks. The stages were silent after a sold-out CMA Fest in 2019 with $65 million pumped into Nashville’s economy.

There is optimism for big success this go around.

“Some of these fans have held onto their tickets – the majority of them for two years. So, I can’t wait for them. They’re going to be spring boarding into Nashville pretty excited, and I think the artists are going to feel that excitement,” said Trahern.

The show will go on.

“I think it’s amazing. I think it’s gonna be lit this year. I think it’s gonna be busier than ever,” said Brian Kelley of Florida Georgia Line. “I know I’m gonna be as busy as I can. I’ve got a meet and greet. I’ve got a merch popup I’m doing. I’ve got a couple performances.”

Four days and four nights of country music, Trahern sums it up this way, “Because it’s taken so much to get to this point, so man people have been impacted by not being able to have the fest, to be back and to celebrate Nashville, to celebrate country music, it’s just going to be really special.”

Another way CMA Fest is gives back is through funding music education programs. Portions of the profits goes towards the CMA Foundation.


CMA Fest is back! News 2 crews are giving you a front row seat to all the action as country artists and fans flood Music City for the first time in two years. Follow our continuing coverage right here on WKRN.com.