Chris Stapleton, Florida Georgia Line, Jason Aldean, Keith Urban and Luke Bryan are among the honorees headlining the “CMT Artists of the Year” special, airing live from Nashville’s Schermerhorn Symphony Center on Wednesday, Oct. 18.
The 2017 event will also recognize those impacted by Hurricane Harvey and the many responders who came to their aid during continuing rescue and recovery efforts.
“Working with our honorees and the entertainment community, we’ll take advantage of one of our biggest nights of the year to honor the resilience of those impacted by this disaster and applaud the fearless efforts of those on the front lines,” said Frank Tanki, General Manager of CMT and TV Land. “CMT is committed to providing our fans with the tools and resources needed to contribute to this massive recovery effort as well as connecting those affected to the support services they need.”
Artists featured on the 90-minute special are chosen based on the impact they’ve had on country music, and each has seen success on CMT’s multiple platforms, country radio, album sales and streams, and touring.
The Viacom-owned CMT, the sole cable brand participating in the “Hand in Hand: A Benefit for Hurricane Harvey” telethon, has posted nine consecutive months of year-over-year ratings growth with Adults 18-49. According to the network, quarter-to-date, CMT is up +15% from year ago with Adults 18-49 and up +18% with Women 18-49. (L+SD, CMT Total Day). The 2016 edition of “Artists of the Year,” which honored Carrie Underwood, Stapleton, Florida Georgia Line, Kelsea Ballerini, Bryan, Shania Twain and Thomas Rhett, drew nearly 2 million total viewers on premiere night and doubled its total in the six telecasts that aired throughout the weekend.
“CMT Artist of the Year” also pairs performers, which have yet to be announced. In the past, Adele and Darius Rucker teamed up for Lady Antebellum’s “Need You Now;” Adam Lambert and Leona Lewis paid tribute to Little Big Town’s “Girl Crush;” and Maroon 5 covered Taylor Swift’s “Mine.”