Thomas Rhett and Lauren Akins Invite Fans Into a ‘Cozy Christmas Home’ For Host Star-Studded ‘CMA Country Christmas’

Thomas Rhett and his wife, Lauren Akins, are gearing up to host CMA Country Christmas and the show is going…


Lauren Jo Black

| Posted on

November 16, 2020


3:14 pm

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Thomas Rhett, Lauren Akins and Family

Thomas Rhett and his wife, Lauren Akins, are gearing up to host CMA Country Christmas and the show is going to be jam-packed with star power.

Just two weeks ahead of the show’s debut, the Country Music Association has revealed that Kelsea Ballerini, Gabby Barrett, Dan + Shay, Florida Georgia Line, Lady A, Little Big Town, Tim McGraw, Thomas Rhett, and Darius Rucker with Lindsey Stirling are confirmed to appear on the annual holiday celebration.

Hosted by the beloved country couple, the special will take place in a “cozy Christmas home” and will also feature an appearance by the Akins children: Willa Gray, Ada James and Lennon Love.

“The idea for this year’s show was to do a throwback of the great Christmas specials of the 1960s and 1970s,” Robert Deaton, CMA Country Christmas Executive Producer explains. “Andy Williams, Perry Como, Bing Crosby, Judy Garland, Frank Sinatra all had classic Christmas specials where the viewer was invited into the homes of the host to celebrate the holiday like a best friend coming to visit. That was what we wanted to create for this year’s show. Instead of a big flashy production, we took a page from those iconic specials to say, ‘Come relax, and let’s celebrate the holidays together.’”

CMA Country Christmas is scheduled to air on Monday, November 30 at 9/8c  on ABC. See a preview of the show below.

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Lauren Jo Black

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Lauren Jo Black

Lauren Jo Black, a University of Central Florida graduate, has immersed herself in the world of country music for over 15 years. In 2008, she co-founded CountryMusicIsLove, eventually selling it to a major record label in 2015. Following the rebranding of the website to Sounds Like Nashville, Black served as Editor-in-Chief for two and a half years. Currently, she assumes the role of Editor-in-Chief at Country Now and oversees Country Now’s content and digital footprint. Her extensive experience also encompasses her previous role as a Country Music Expert Writer for and her work being featured on She’s been spotlighted among Country Aircheck’s Women of Influence and received the 2012 Rising Star Award from the University of Central Florida. Black also spent time in front of the camera as host of Country Now Live, which brought live music directly to fans in 2021 when the majority of concerts were halted due to the pandemic. During this time, she hosted 24 weeks of live concerts via Country Now Live on Twitch with special guests such as Lady A, Dierks Bentley, Jordan Davis, Brett Young, and Jon Pardi. Over the course of her career, she has had the privilege of conducting interviews with some of the industry’s most prominent stars, including Reba McEntire, Blake Shelton, Luke Combs, Carrie Underwood, Luke Bryan, Miranda Lambert, Lainey Wilson, and many others. Lauren Jo Black is a longtime member of the Country Music Association and the Academy of Country Music.