iHeartCountry Festival Returns as Virtual Event With Enhanced Lineup: Exclusive

Gabby Barrett
Robby Klein

Gabby Barrett

After being postponed from its original May 2 date following the COVID-19 outbreak, the seventh annual iHeartCountry Festival will now take place on Oct. 23 as a virtual streaming and on-air radio special.

Additionally, Gabby Barrett, Morgan Evans and Riley Green have been added to the previously announced line-up including Dierks Bentley, Lady A, Sam Hunt, Kane Brown, Kelsea Ballerini, Dustin Lynch and Jon Pardi. Radio host Bobby Bones will also make an appearance.

The event, recorded live on one stage in Nashville, will stream exclusively on and will broadcast live across iHeartMedia’s more than 150 country music radio stations in local markets and at starting at 7 p.m. CT.

In January, iHeart announced the performers for the Capital One-sponsored event, which was slated to take place in May at the Frank Erwin Center in Austin, Texas. In March, iHeart officially postponed the date.

“Despite this year’s pandemic, we are honored to still be able to host one of country music’s most anticipated nights with an iconic lineup of the genre’s biggest artists,” said Rod Phillips, executive VP of programming for iHeartCountry, in a statement. “Although fans won’t be able to celebrate in person, the show will be available to our millions of listeners across our iHeartCountry stations nationwide and through the exclusive stream on LiveXLive.”

The news comes a few days after the annual two-day iHeartRadio Festival, Sept. 18-19, went virtual for the first time with performers including Alicia Keys, Thomas Rhett, Coldplay, Migos and BTS.

In addition to Capital One, other iHeartCountry Festival partners include Country Crock, Jane, Progressive Insurance, Tito’s Handmade Vodka and St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital as the exclusive charity partner.

While most of the acts originally announced earlier this year remain on the bill, previously announced acts Blake Shelton and Chase Rice are no longer on the slate.

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