CBS is finally getting back into the New Year’s Eve concert bash business by handing over its Dec. 31 schedule to Nashville. The eye network announced plans to air New Year’s Eve Live: Nashville’s Big Bash this year, featuring top country artists performing live from Music City. Performances from Nashville’s New Year’s Eve concert at Bicentennial Capitol Mall State Park have been featured in other networks’ programming, but CBS’ special will feature performances from the park and other locations around the city.
The first batch of announced performers includes Jason Aldean, Jimmie Allen, Kelsea Ballerini, Blake Shelton, Darius Rucker, Gabby Barrett, Dierks Bentley, Brooks & Dunn, Dan + Shay, Luke Bryan, Elle King, Miranda Lambert, Cole Swindell, and Zac Brown Band. More artists will be announced at a later date. The show will begin at 8 p.m. ET on CBS and will air live across all time zones. There will be a countdown at midnight ET before the Nashville music note drop and fireworks at midnight CT.
Nashville’s Big Bash will feature almost 50 performances from across Downtown Nashville. The Bicentennial Capitol Mall State Park concert will feature Bentley, Dan + Shay, and Zac Brown Band. Sandra Restrepo is directing the special, which will be executive produced by Robert Deaton and Mary Hilliard with the Nashville Convention and Visitors Corp.
This will be the first time CBS will air special New Year’s Eve programming since Dec. 31, 1999, notes Deadline. CBS also had a famous New Year’s Eve special featuring Guy Lombardo and the Royal Canadian Band live from the Waldorf Astoria in New York City that aired from 1956 until 1976. Since 1999, CBS’ New Year’s Eve programming has usually been repeats or pre-recorded specials. Meanwhile, ABC, NBC, and Fox have all had live New Year’s Eve concerts airing for years.
The Nashville New Year’s Eve special also continues CBS’ ongoing commitment to becoming the broadcast network for country music fans. The network will now air the CMT Music Awards and has aired several country music specials in recent years. On Wednesday, CBS announced Kenny Rogers: All In For The Gambler, an all-star special paying tribute to the late legendary singer. The special was filmed at Bridgestone Arena before Rogers’ death and features performances from Lionel Richie, Little Big Town, Lady A, Chris Stapleton, Reba McEntire, Dolly Parton, and Rogers himself. All In For The Gambler will air on Thursday, Sept. 23 at 9 p.m. ET.