Jason Aldean and Brooks & Dunn were all smiles backstage at Sunday’s (Oct. 30) rehearsals for the 50th annual CMA Awards. They are performing together on Wednesday’s (Nov. 2) show and are looking forward to a night of all-star collaborations and performances representing country’s past, present and future.
“It’s always cool when some of the older guys come back and perform,” Aldean said in an interview backstage. “A lot of the guys, I’ve never had the chance to tour with or actually see perform, so that’s always cool for me to see them onstage because I grew up such a fan.”
“I like not knowing [who’s performing], too,” Kix Brooks added. “It’s kind of fun going in cold and getting surprised like everybody else.”
“Plus, it’s black tie,” Ronnie Dunn added. “I just got a memo. There’s going to be some bad suits out there. You turn all these hillbillies loose with a dress code?”
Of course, he’s kidding. But in all seriousness — the CMA has instituted a black-tie dress code for the CMA Awards’ golden anniversary. That means everyone is expected to arrive dressed to the nines in their best tuxes and formal gowns.
Several prominent country stars, sports figures and Hollywood celebrities have been added to the show as presenters.
They are Bill Anderson, Cam, Lee Greenwood, Brenda Lee, Barbara Mandrell, Olivia Newton-John, the Oak Ridge Boys and Cole Swindell; “Final Five” Olympic gymnasts Simone Biles, Gabby Douglas, Laurie Hernandez, Madison Kocian, and Aly Raisman; NFL Legend Peyton Manning; ESPN’s Kirk Herbstreit and Samantha Ponder; Once Upon A Time actor Josh Dallas, Jennifer Garner, Matthew McConaughey, Sharon Stone, Lily Tomlin and Wendi McLendon-Covey and Hayley Orrantia from ABC’s The Goldbergs.
Dan + Shay will host a pre-telecast honoring the 2016 CMA broadcast personality and station of the year winners.