The CMA Award-winners performed an incredible version of John Mellencamp’s “Small Town” inside of a completely empty Nissan Stadium, the same stadium which is usually filled with over 50,000 country music fans during the annual CMA Festival.
Robert Deaton, CMA Executive Producer, said it was a moment he will never forget and one that reminded him never to take the festival for granted again.
“It was a reminder of why we love music so much,” Deaton said. “It was dramatic seeing them in an empty stadium, but it’s so, so great because they were playing music … and they were so happy.”
The performance was incredible, but a bit eery, as the two performed to an empty stadium with just themselves and a small socially-distant band.
Host @LukeBryanOnline & @DariusRucker’s NEW collab of “Small Town” is happening NOW on “Best of #CMAfest” on @ABCNetwork! They are MAKING ? OUR ? NIGHT ? Who else is enjoying the never-before-seen performance!? pic.twitter.com/B9Xbv5PZmx
— CMA Country Music (@CountryMusic) July 14, 2020
Rucker’s 2014 performance of “Wagon Wheel” and Bryan’s 2012 performance of “Country Girl (Shake It For Me)” aired earlier in the broadcast.
CMA Fest returns to Nashville June 10-13, 2021.