2016 CMA Songwriters Series in the UK Announces Lineup
The CMA Songwriters Series will return to the UK for its 10th European show on Thursday 10th March 2016 at Indigo at The O2 in London. Celebrating the craft of storytelling through song and the stories behind Country Music’s greatest hits, this CMA Songwriters Series will feature Charles Esten, Shane McAnally, Lori McKenna, Ashley Monroe, and Charlie Worsham.
Launched in 2005, the CMA Songwriters Series will enter its 12th year in 2016. In 2012, the Series made its European debut with shows in London, Dublin, and Belfast. The Series returned the following year with shows taking place in Ireland, London, and Paris. Since 2014, the CMA Songwriters Series has returned annually to London as part of County to Country, the three day Country Music festival at The O2 in London featuring an outstanding line-up of Country Music’s biggest stars.
Performing this year are Esten, one of the stars of the popular ABC Television Network series “Nashville” playing the role of Deacon Claybourne; McAnally and McKenna, two of Country Music’s hottest songwriters — with McAnnally co-writing most of Kacey Musgraves’ songs and McKenna currently best known for co-writing the CMA Award winning “Girl Crush” for Little Big Town; Monroe, who is a critically-acclaimed singer/songwriter and one third of the Pistol Annies with Miranda Lambert and Angaleena Presley; and Worsham, who paid his dues as a session musician and singing on demos, but is now a rapidly rising star who’s been touring with Lambert and Taylor Swift.
Best known for his role on “Nashville,” Esten made his stage debut in London, portraying Buddy Holly in the hit West End musical BUDDY. In that role he performed for both HM Queen Elizabeth II at the Royal Variety Performance and Pres. George H W Bush at the White House. Today, besides playing the character of Deacon Claybourne, he is quickly gaining acclaim as a singer/songwriter in his own right. He has performed at the Grand Ole Opry, the historic Ryman Auditorium, and Bluebird Café, as well as headlining the St. Jude Country Music Marathon Concert at the Bridgestone Arena. He is a featured artist on the eight successful “Nashville” soundtracks that have been released to date, two of which include “I Know How to Love You Now,” which he co-wrote with Deana Carter. Last summer Esten released his first independent single, “Hot One.”
Award-winning songwriter and producer McAnally has penned 15 and counting career No.1 songs for artists such as Luke Bryan, Kenny Chesney, Kelly Clarkson, Sam Hunt, Lady Antebellum, Lambert, Reba, Jake Owen, Keith Urban, and many more. Additionally, his work as a producer has resulted in a CMA Award, a Billboard cover story, and credit as a collaborator on a Broadway-bound musical. McAnally is a frequent collaborator of Kacey Musgraves, having co-produced both of her studio albums (Same Trailer Different Park and Pageant Material) and contributed as a songwriter to the albums. He has also produced Clarkson, Hunt, Old Dominion, and Owen. McAnally, a CMA Board member, has been nominated for nine CMA Awards and won the 2014 CMA Song of the Year Award as co-writer of Musgraves’ “Follow Your Arrow.”
LORI McKENNA has become one of Nashville’s most in-demand Country songwriters. Her songs have been cut by artists such as Faith Hill, Alison Krauss, Tim McGraw, Reba, and Urban and include chart hits like Hunter Hayes’ “I Want Crazy,” as well as Little Big Town’s “Your Side of the Bed” and “Sober.” She won the 2015 CMA Song of the Year Award for the Little Big Town smash “Girl Crush.” Along with her successes as a songwriter, McKenna has released eight critically acclaimed studio albums. Her latest album, Numbered Doors, was named by Rolling Stone as one of the 40 Best Country Albums of 2014.
ASHLEY MONROE Monroe’s passion for traditional Country is matched only by her gift for crisp, clever songwriting. The Blade, her latest full-length album, produced by Vince Gill and Justin Niebank, was received with critical acclaim upon its release in July 2015. The Knoxville, Tenn. native is also one-third of the Pistol Annies, a trio she co-formed with fellow Country artists Lambert (with whom she penned the chart-topping hit “Heart Like Mine”) and Angaleena Presley. Monroe was nominated in 2009 and 2015 for CMA Musical Event of the Year and in 2013 for Musical Event and Music Video of the Year as a member of the Pistol Annies.
CHARLIE WORSHAM In high school, Worsham scored his first electric guitar by busking in front of the guitar shop until he could raise the final $100 on the price tag and joined a band. After graduating, he attended the Berklee School of Music for two and a half years before moving to Nashville in order to pursue a recording career. Worsham worked both as a writer and as a session musician for artists such as Eric Church and Dierks Bentley while continuing to pen his own songs and record demos. His hard work eventually paid off when he landed a deal with Warner Music Nashville and began opening on tour for the likes of Lambert and Taylor Swift. Worsham’s debut album Rubberband landed on Spin’s “Best Country Albums” list, American Songwriter’s “Top 50 Albums” and Billboard’s “Top 10 Country Albums” of the year upon its release in 2013.
Tickets for the CMA Songwriters Series at indigo at The O2 are on sale now from www.axs.com/c2c and www.gigsandtours.com. indigo at The O2 is a 14+ venue. For more information on the CMA Songwriters Series, visit www.CMAsongwritersseries.com.
(Thanks to SJM Press Office for help with this announcement)