Photo Credit John Russell

CMA Music Festival set a new attendance record in 2012 with daily attendance topping 71,000 fans, a 9.2 percent increase over the 65,000 in attendance in 2011 and a sell out for the third consecutive year at LP Field. Tickets for 2013 CMA Music Festival, which will be held Thursday through Sunday June 6-9, are on sale now.

The increase was attributed to expanded seating at LP Field for the nightly concerts and mild temperatures that drove increased attendance in the free event and concert areas downtown.

“Third time’s the charm and to achieve a sell out for a third straight year and increase attendance says a lot about the strength of this event, the dedication of our fans, the support of our industry and local community, and the popularity of our music and artists,” said Steve Moore, CMA Chief Executive Officer.

Attendance figures for 2012 include four-day ticket packages, promotional and single night tickets, as well as attendance in non-ticketed free areas and events. In all, more than 450 artists performed more than 200 hours of concerts.

Week-long mild temperatures in Nashville resulted in increased attendance in the numerous free areas including The Buckle, Fan Alley, public events, and concert venues. In fact, there was record attendance on Friday and Saturday at Chevrolet Riverfront Park with more than 25,000 fans attending the free concerts throughout each day on the sloping bank of the Cumberland River. Crowds for the new BIC® Soleil Bella® Beach Stage were strong and attendance at the Bud Light Stage on the Bridgestone Plaza increased over 2011. The new BMI Stage at LP Field was bustling each evening as crowds entered the stadium for the nightly concerts.

“Eighty percent of our four-day ticket holders come from outside of Tennessee,” said Moore. “What we are seeing is gains with our locals who are coming out to support our free areas in increasing numbers.”

According to the Nashville Convention and Visitors Bureau, the direct visitor spending generated by CMA Music Festival in 2011 was $30 million, a $6 million increase over 2010 making the Festival the top annual generator of tourist income in Nashville. And it appears that 2012 was a boon to business again. Figures for 2012 will be released by the NCVB at a later date.

“More stages, more music, and more fans. This event outperforms itself every year and at every level and the ‘halo’ effect lasts all year long,” said Butch Spyridon, President of the NCVB.

“For us, the Grand Ole Opry and CMA Music Festival go hand in hand,” said Melissa Fraley Agguini, Director of Retail, Opry Originals on Broadway, which premiered its Accessories Bar this year. “Although we are open year-round, we definitely see a peak during Festival week. This year we brought in extra staff and added security due to the number of artist autograph signings in-store. And while we had increasing traffic throughout the week, Sunday was our largest day because people feel they can carry what they purchase directly home, and the Country fans definitely love us for our unique apparel and accessory offerings.”

“The CMA Music Festival has been everything as advertised,” said Brian Pedrick, Manager, Bailey’s on Broadway. “Money-wise, CMA Music Festival increases about 400 percent of the normal business we do here downtown in a week.”

“We’ve tripled our inventory for these four days, and it was much needed,” said Linda Gorby, Manager of Boot Country on Broadway. “The store has been packed nonstop.”

CMA Music Festival benefits downtown businesses, but it also supports music education in Music City. The artists and celebrities participating in CMA Music Festival donate their time. They are not compensated for the hours they spend signing autographs and performing. In appreciation of their exhaustive efforts, The CMA Foundation donates proceeds from the event to music education on the artists’ behalf through CMA’s Keep the Music Playing program. To date, CMA has donated more than $6.1 million to the cause.

CMA’s valued corporate partners are contributing to this worthy and important initiative, too.

For the third consecutive year, longtime partner Chevrolet invited music industry professionals to a pre-Festival Industry Test Drive. Held at CMA on June 1, the event featured a wide variety of Chevrolet cars and trucks. For every test drive, Chevrolet donates $25 to the Keep the Music Playing program.

“Another great year at the CMA Music Festival where Chevrolet’s support of Country Music, engagement with passionate music fans, and offerings of multiple Chevrolet activities made for a fun, multi-day experience for fans and customers alike,” said Phil Caruso, Manager, Chevrolet National Promotions. “CMA Music Festival is good example of how Chevrolet continues to play a role in popular culture and the lives of many musical artists and their fans.”

Corporate brand partnerships are a key element to the marketing, fan experience, and financial support of the Festival. Nearly 50 different brands participated in the CMA Music Festival generating a combined activation and consumer engagements of more than 1.25 million – an increase of nearly 40 percent over numbers for 2011 (900,000). These various engagement elements included product sampling, dedicated registrations and sales leads, as well as brand impressions.

CMA Music Festival, which started as Fan Fair® in 1972, is about the fans and their relationship with the artists and the music.

The theme is universal and in 2012, Festival attendees came from all 50 states and two dozen countries, including Australia, Austria, Canada, Chile, China, Cuba, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominican Republic, France, Germany, Holland, Honduras, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Korea, Mexico, New Zealand, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, United Arab Emirates, and the U.K.

Tickets for 2013 CMA Music Festival, which will be held Thursday through Sunday, June 6-9, are available now.  

Fans can order tickets by calling the CMA Box Office at 1-800-CMA-FEST (262-3378) or Ticketmaster at 1-800-745-3000. To purchase tickets online, visit www.ticketmaster.com. Prices do not include applicable handling fees. Ticket prices are subject to change without notice. All sales are final and non-refundable. Four-day ticket package categories correspond to different levels of seating at LP Field. Children 3 years and younger are admitted free.

2013 CMA MUSIC FESTIVAL- FOUR DAY TICKET PACKAGE PRICES

SEATING LEVEL

Gold Circle (sections A-E) – $350
Floor – $250
Lower Level Premium – $250
Lower Level – $200
Club Level Premium – $200
Club Level – $160
Upper Level Reserved – $135
Upper Level General Admission – $125