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5 Can’t-Miss Moments From 2017 CMA Fest [Watch]

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Thomas Rhett and Kelsea Ballerini will co-host the 2017 CMA Fest special on ABC on Wednesday (Aug. 16). Their chemistry is just one of five things not to miss during the broadcast.

Taped in June, the annual CMA Festival replay on ABC highlights the biggest and best moments from Nashville’s Nissan Stadium while incorporating some of the other stages throughout downtown Nashville. Four nights worth of shows are slimmed down to three hours of television, yet somehow 28 artists will still be featured.

Lady Antebellum‘s crowd participation during “Need You Now” was a highlight moment from this year’s event. The trio also pulled out the horns for “You Look Good,” a funky new single from the Heart Beat album.

Luke Bryan played “Country Girl (Shake It for Me)” during his set, but we liked when he slowed it down for “Drink a Beer” a little better. Keith Urban walked through the crowd during the climactic moment of his set at CMA Fest 2017. Along with Brad Paisley, the two country vets were the resident guitar heroes.

Song of the Summer? These 10 Get Our Votes!

But all anyone could talk about was Garth. It was Garth Brooks‘ first appearance at CMA Fest in 20 years. His multi-song surprise set culminated with “Friends in Low Places” — Brooks would later tell Taste of Country and select media that this was the first year since his comeback began that the scheduling worked out for him to play, and he was as pumped as the fans were.

Miranda Lambert, Jason Aldean, Kelsea Ballerini, Brothers Osborne and Eric Church were other highlight performers. It’s not clear which songs from each artist will make the ABC broadcast, but we’re pretty sure our No. 1 moment will get plenty of time to shine.

What’s the Best Song of 2017? Is It One of These? 

Next: Thomas Rhett and Kelsea Ballerini Preview CMA Fest

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