Written by Josie Bisto
If you haven’t watched it yet, you need to watch the music video for “Forever Country” featuring “Artists of Then, Now and Forever”. The star-studded collaboration is dubbed the “biggest video in country music history” and celebrates the 50th Annual CMA Awards. The song was released on September 16th but listeners had to wait until September 20th to watch the riveting masterpiece.
A 90 second teaser premiered on Dancing with the Stars this past Tuesday followed by an official release on forevercountry.com immediately after the show.
The mash-up of John Denver’s “Take Me Home, Country Roads,” Willie Nelson’s “On the Road Again” and Dolly Parton’s “I Will Always Love You” is similar to that of Michael Jackson’s 1985 unforgettable hit “We Are the World”, in that the amount of talent that came together for this video is almost unfathomable.
I didn’t think one song could encapsulate all of country music,” Grammy Award winner Joseph Kahne who directed and came up with the idea for a mash-up stated.
The video was shot on green screen over a period of 3 days during CMA Festival in Nashville this past June. It features 30 extraordinary artists (more if you consider the individuals in the group acts) who have been extremely influential to country music over the years: all of whom are previous CMA Award winners. The video is produced by the insanely talented producer/singer/songwriter Shane McAnally, who considered around 40 songs for the mash-up before finding the perfect three. He seamlessly blends classic songs and singers of various eras into one hypnotizing video; it had the hair on my entire body on end from start to finish.
I’m really proud of it.” says McAnally, “It is truly like walking through a dream with all of my heroes”.
The video opens with Brad Paisley singing “Take Me Home, Country Roads” and continues with the various artists walking farm fields, forests, mountains, fields of flowers, train tracks and back roads while the city rises behind them. It also features Nashville’s Historic Downtown Broadway, a cameo by Randy Travis, Reba McEntire performing at The Mother Church of Country Music- The Ryman Auditorium and Vince Gill opening for the CMA Awards show before it ends panning over all the artists in a perfectly lit field effortlessly landing on an angelic Dolly Parton singing her timeless hit “I Will Always Love You”.
The superstar cast also includes: Trisha Yearwood, Dierks Bentley, Keith Urban, Rascal Flatts, Alan Jackson, Blake Shelton, Tim McGraw, Darius Rucker, Alabama, Lady Antebellum, Faith Hill, Carrie Underwood, Willie Nelson, Luke Bryan, Charley Pride, Kacey Musgraves, Eric Church, Little Big Town, Ronnie Milsap, Jason Aldean, Martina McBride, Brett Eldredge, George Strait, Miranda Lambert and Brooks & Dunn.
Watch the video and see behind the scenes footage from each artist at forevercountry.com and don’t forget to watch the 50th Annual CMA Awards when it airs live from the Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, Wednesday, November 2nd, 8/7c on ABC. Find out more at cmaworld.com.