Budweiser Announces 'Country Club' Lineup for CMA Kickoff Showcase

Lindsay Ell
John Shearer

Lindsay Ell

Universal Music’s Kassi Ashton says that nobody was more excited about her signing a commercial endorsement deal with Budweiser than her father.

“When you go in his shop, he says, ‘I've got two drink options.' He says, ‘Okay, I've got a 12 ounce Budweiser, and I've got a 16 ounce Budweiser.’ And he has vintage Budweiser memorabilia all over the place. So, when we all started meeting, I was ecstatic. If it just meant that I got a free Budweiser t-shirt, I was cool. But when they called and said that they wanted me to be in this commercial for this new beer, which, by the way, if you haven't heard, is aged on Jim Beam barrel staves. And I am a huge bourbon drinker. That's my go to drink. I was through the roof excited.”

Ashton’s involvement with Budweiser also extends to her appearance as part of the Budweiser Country Club, which will take place on Sunday, Nov. 11 at Nashville’s Exit / In – three days before the CMA Awards take place. Ashton is excited to be a part of the showcase – which shines the light on some of country’s most exciting female artists.

“The Country Club does a lot with bridging current country music with traditional, and making sure that everyone knows that Budweiser loves all country music and accepts all fans. I've worked with them before, both at Stagecoach and CMA Fest, and it is always a blast. Everyone in the Country Club is always ready to have fun. Everyone always has a smile on their face. And, the fact that I get to do it all again with them, plus incorporate the CMA really gets me stoked.”

Ashton’s not the only one who is excited. She will be joined at the show by Lindsay Ell, Clare Dunn, and rising duo The Sisterhood, and all three acts are equally pumped.

"I’m absolutely honored to be a part of the Budweiser CMA showcase," says Clare Dunn. "I’ve been working with Budweiser for the past couple years and I’m so grateful to be working with a brand that supports artists on the way up and who also support our veterans through Folds of Honor. So for me, having been a volunteer once upon a time for the CMA awards, it’s pretty full circle moment to be able to play a show with Budweiser around one of the legacy award shows in our genre.”

"Budweiser has such a large presence in country music and are always going the extra mile to foster relationships between the fans and their favorite artists, which is so important to me," says Lindsay Ell. "I’m so excited to kick off this year’s CMA Awards week at the Budweiser showcase performing with some badass women.”

“The Sisterhood Band is all about responsible fun,” offered the band's Ruby Stewart. “We take a lot of responsibility for our music and for our fans having a good time and the Backyard Brewery Tour with our Budweiser family is a great example of that philosophy in action. We discovered on a brewery tour in Fort Collins how eco-friendly Budweiser is, so now whenever we order a beer, we always order a Bud because that is something we genuinely respect. Being part of the CMA showcase with an all-female lineup in our hometown, is an even better reason to celebrate with a round.”

For their part, Budweiser is proud to be associated with Nashville during the industry’s biggest week.

“Budweiser and country music are uniquely intertwined as staples of American culture,” said Monica Rustgi, VP of Budweiser. “We’re thrilled to partner with the Country Music Awards and collaborate with some of country music’s rising stars as we connect the next generation of country music fans to the Budweiser Country Club experience.”

Ashton, who is finishing up her debut album, released two songs digitally to great response – the autobiographical “California, Missouri,” and the feisty “Taxidermy,” which she said sounds like something that vey well could have come from her pen – but it didn’t.

“Luke Dick, Natalie Hemby, and Rosie Golan wrote it. Natalie called me the day she wrote it. She was like, we wrote a song for you today, it's called ‘Taxidermy’. I was amazed. I grew up in a family where deer season is bigger than Christmas, so I was thinking, ‘I am not about to sing some hunting song, what in the world?’ As soon as I heard, it perfectly embodies my roots, you know? Deer season, I got my first .22 when I was seven, but because it's so funky and stretchy creative wise, that it satisfies the creative cloud my brain lives in. It was a perfect mesh of my two worlds.”

The Budweiser Country Club is open to the public by RSVP only.