‘Nashville’ will stay in Nashville and on TV

CMT picks up 5th season of Nashville

Great news for songwriters

The stars of 'Nashville' celebrate the good news
The stars of ‘Nashville’ celebrate the good news

When Nashville was canceled by the ABC TV network, it was a gloomy day for fans who had followed four seasons of the television show. But it was also bad news for a lot of people (both business and creative) who had benefitted from the show.

So it was a ray of sunshine – on an already very sunny day – when three Nashville stars gathered onstage June 10 at the CMA Music Festival to spread the word that the popular TV series has a new home on CMT. Earlier in the day, CMT, Hulu, Lionsgate and ABC Studios announced that the critically acclaimed and fan favorite Nashville will return with a brand new season on CMT. Hulu will continue to bring fans the series by making all Nashville episodes available to stream the day after they air on CMT, according to a statement released by CMT.

Nashville star Charles Easten was performing on the Riverfront Park stage when he was joined by castmates Clare Bowen and Chris Carmack and CMT personality Coly Alan. They shared the good news with cheering fans as a banner rolled out to proclaiming the hashtags #NashvilleSaved and #NashvilleCMT.

But this was also great news for the Nashville business and creative communities.

'Nashville's stars announce show's move to CMT
‘Nashville’s stars announce show’s move to CMT

The show began as the brainchild of Ryman Hospitality, a Nashville-based tourism and entertainment company that pitched the concept to ABC. The show has been syndicated to 100+ countries and is widely regarded as promoting Nashville as a tourist destination. In fact, the State of Tennessee and Metro Nashville viewed Nashville as a weekly hour-long commercial for visiting the city.

In addition to tourism dollars, Nashville has had a major impact on those employed in the local film and entertainment industry, providing employment for up to 500 people during the 200 days of filming each year.

It was great news for songwriters when Nashville got green lighted for a fifth season, too.

Nashville is a rarity among TV shows in that it regularly features new songs, mostly from Nashville songwriters, that are performed by the cast members. The show’s producers keep a stockpile of songs for each of the show’s characters that they can work into the storyline. When they are hunting for a new song, they’ll contact 25 or more song publishers and listen to a lot of demos.

Getting a song on a hit TV show like Nashville can lead to a nice payday for a songwriter. Even so, publishers are sometimes leery of granting a license to a TV show if they believe the song has a shot at being a big hit on Country radio for a major artist, because that’s still where the big paydays start.

The show has spawned around 16 soundtrack albums (all of which have been released via Big Machine Records) so in many cases songwriters benefitted from both the song being licensed to the show and the record release. Several of the soundtrack albums have peaked in the top ten on the Country album charts.

So the renewal of Nashville on CMT and Hulu is good news for the shows fans, Nashville-based film crew, the tourist industry and particularly for songwriters.

So… get in those Writer’s Rooms, familiarize yourself with the type of songs that make the cut to become part of the show, and get your creative juices flowing! Nashville is back in Nashville and that’s good news for everyone.