(CMT Offstage keeps a 24/7 watch on everything that’s happening with country music artists behind the scenes and
out of the spotlight.)
There’s so much I cannot tell you about the CMT
Music Awards rehearsals. Like, there’s this mash-up a band’s going to play with another band and it’s going to be unbelievable,
complete with banjo. Then there’s another thing that’s going to happen outside the venue that will blow your mind. And then
there’s one video that plays behind an artist (Kenny Chesney) that is
so sexy it’s amazing CMT is able to televise it.
But those top secrets aside, I can tell you this: watching rehearsals
never gets old. Yes, you are watching an artist sing the same song over and over until they get it right. But if that song
is one you are crazy about, say Luke Bryan’s “Drunk
on You,” then what’s not to love? Same with when you’re so close to the action that you notice that one of your favorite
bands’ frontman (I’m talking to you Charles Kelley) is wearing underwear from The Ellen DeGeneres Show as they take
the stage with a great band. Whatever. That’s another one I also can’t mention. And watching The
Band Perry bring out a resonator mandolin and a new cowboy hat that make a familiar song feel new all over again? Loved
that. Or counting Toby Keith’s beers right along with him while he sings
about his memories from 1,452, 1,562, 1,652 and 1,653 beers ago, if I was counting correctly. And then you hear a brand new
tune from Zac Brown Band and remember why you fell in love with country
music in the first place.
Then there are the little things that happen backstage that have nothing to do with the show.
Like how every time the announcer announces a winner’s name, Adele’s “Someone
Like You” plays. Or how a compliment of Zac Brown’s Power Balance band led to him giving me the balance test. (It really works.)
Or how, between practice runs of his own song, Bryan warmed up his vocals with Keith
Whitley‘s “I Wonder Do You Think of Me,” Brooks Dunn “That
Ain’t No Way to Go” and Reba McEntire’s “You Lie.”
for more details from Wednesday’s rehearsals.