Going into the third night of CMA Fest evening performances, Nissan Stadium was packed full, with the crowd ready for more performances by some of the biggest names in country music.
Throughout the night, artists shared their appreciation for the fans who through rain and high water came out to support the stars. Not only did the singers share how thankful they were for the fans, but also for the Metro Police and the CMA Foundation.
The first big headliner of the evening was “Achy Breaky Heart” singer and songwriter Billy Ray Cyrus who dedicated “Sunday Morning Coming Down” to the Metro Police and all those serving the country by putting their lives on the line. The song was originally written by Cyrus for a Vietnam Veteran.
“So many men and women in uniform have given the ultimate price of service and sacrifice for this great country,” Cyrus said. “Give it up for Metro, ladies and gentlemen. All the men and women in uniform serving this country tonight, thank you.”
Bringing out surprise guest Johnny Mcguire, the two performed “I Come From a Long Line of Chevys and Fords.” Once the song was over, Cyrus appeared to have finished his set walking off the stage much to the disappointment of fans who chanted after Cyrus, “Old Town Road.”
Fans had speculated earlier in the festival and that day that Lil Nas X would make an appearance during Cyrus’s set. Well Cyrus didn’t disappoint, coming back to the stage after Brett Young’s set with Lil Nas X and Keith Urban to perform “Old Town Road.”
Brett Young sang his heart out with his mix of love songs, sad songs and his fifth single, “Here Tonight.” Young thanked fans during his set for supporting not only him but country music as well.
“I’ll never be done, finished saying thank you for supporting country music,” Young said before his final song, “Here Tonight.”
Young also performed his new single “Catch,” and his other songs “Still Be Friends” and “Mercy.”
Miranda Lambert and the Pistol Annies took the stage Saturday night as well, performing “Hell on Heels” and “Sugar Daddy.” Lambert also performed a brand new song, “Locomotive” for the crowd with its rocking beats and guitar riffs. The song moved imitated the motion of a locomotive charging ahead with a fast paced chorus that packed a punch.
Lambert’s set of powerful vocals and guitar riffs paved the road for Luke Combs who followed with his own set of energetic and love songs. Starting with “Got the Best of Me” and “Lovin’ On You,” Combs brought out the love in the crowd with his song “Beautiful, Crazy,” which he wrote about his fiance.
During the set, couples around the stadium embraced, and even those who didn’t have a significant other swayed to the song. Ending his set with “Beer Never Broke My Heart,” Combs set of songs about love and country calmed the crowd for the next energetic set by Dierks Bentley.
Bentley jumped onto the stage with high energy levels, running around both on the stage and on the floor to interact with the crowd. “Burning Man” not only had the crowd singing along but dancing to the lively music.
“I want to honor all these amazing women out here tonight, all these country girls,” Bentley said as he tried to get the men in the crowd to sing his song “Woman, Amen” for the women in the stadium.
Bringing out Canadian country singer Tenille Townes, the duo sang “Different For Girls,” again honoring the women in the crowd.
Ending the night was Tim McGraw, who experienced technical difficulties with his mic and ear pieces, but powered through bringing the heat to the stage and finale.