We could not have asked for a better day to close out the 2016 CMA Fest experience, catching amazing performances from Cam, Old Dominion, LOCASH and so much more. Here’s our final recap.
It’s no surprise that this promising up and comer drew a huge crowd to the Riverfront Stage. Her incredible music, and charming personality to match, made for a flawless show. We got there just in time to hear her current single “Mayday” with the crowd swaying along to the catchy tune. She then informed us of what she loves most about country music fans, saying that we’re all about having fun, working hard and not caring about what we look like before delving into a song of that very nature titled “Country Ain’t Never Been Pretty,” a proud anthem that proclaims leaving the suits and “vanilla lattes” to the people in the city since “country ain’t never been pretty and that’s alright, if your head’s on straight, your hair will be fine.” She closed out her fabulous set with her signature song “Burning House,” sounding just as hauntingly beautiful live as the recorded version, with fans in the audience knowing every word. This girl certainly knows how to entertain a large crowd!
It was a lively and spirited audience that gathered at the riverfront for Old Dominion’s performance, with their introduction warranting loud applause and cheers from devoted fans. The five-member group, who recently won the ACM Award for New Vocal Group of the Year, are also accomplished songwriters, with members penning hits like The Band Perry’s “Chainsaw,” “Neon” by Chris Young, “A Guy Walks Into a Bar” from Tyler Farr and many more. They had the whole crowd singing along with their opener “Snapback” and kept the high energy going with “Shut Me Up” and “Crazy Beautiful Sexy.”
In between songs, the band told the audience that “we really wouldn’t want to be anywhere else right now” and thanked them for “pretty much changing our lives.” Fans spent the duration of “Nowhere Fast” clapping along to the familiar number, along with “Song for Another Time,” which served as the perfect sing-along that includes lyrics calling for “dancing on a ceiling” and “let’s be ‘Brown Eyed Girl,’ ‘Sweet Caroline’…before you lose that loving feeling.” The sing-along continued with the equally captivating “Said Nobody.” They closed out the already enthralling show with, of course, their No. 1 single “Break Up with Him,” with fans singing just as loudly as the band itself – and one fan proudly holding up a sign that read “I broke up with him.”
In spite of the heat, LOCASH, comprised of Chris Lucas and Preston Brust, brought energy at the highest level with the last show at Riverfront Stage. They performed an energetic opening number and enthusiastically told the crowd that their song “I Know Somebody” just broke the Top 30. They kicked the party up a notch with the amusing “Drunk Drunk,” which was the perfect song for the environment, seeing as it’s all about drinking in the heat and pretending you’re on a beach, evoking a very Kenny Chesney-esque vibe that the audience was loving as they prompted them to sing along as they chanted “one Long Island, two Long Island, three Long Island, floor!” Preston hilariously called out an audience member for singing “four” instead of the correct “floor.” “Because no one gets to four,” he joked.
A special moment came when the duo were presented by their wives with a plaque from their label, Reviver Records, for their hit single “I Love This Life”which is officially RIAA Gold-Certified, selling more than 500,000 copies. The boys humbly accepted the honor and finished out their set with a bang diving into Tim McGraw’s “Truck Yeah,” a song they co-wrote, and really got the crowd into it while chanting the song’s title, along with “I Love This Life,” with Preston going so far as climbing part of the structure holding up the stage to sing the last few lines of the song while holding his mic out to the crowd, who willingly obliged to sing right along with them. It was a phenomenal way to close out CMA Fest at the Riverfront Stage.