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[01/14/05 - 12:00 AM]
CMT Announces Additions to 2005 Programming Slate

[via press release from CMT]

CMT Announces Additions to 2005 Programming Slate

Upcoming Premieres Include Music's Hottest Stars, American Stories, Reality

UNIVERSAL CITY, Calif., Jan. 14 -- Building on country music's successful year, cultural trends and uniquely American stories, CMT announces additions to its 2005 programming slate. "In 2004 CMT racked up its most watched year ever and scored a fifth consecutive record-breaking quarter with 18-to-49 year-old viewers," says Brian Philips, Executive Vice President/General Manager, CMT. "CMT's momentum sweeps into 2005, as we roll out more original long-form programming, celebrating country music and telling timeless American stories."

New Specials:

KENNY CHESNEY: BE AS YOU ARE -- Country music's hottest artist, Kenny Chesney, comes to CMT for a live performance special, giving the audience an advance performance of his highly anticipated and very personal album "Be As You Are: Songs From An Old Blue Chair." Chesney, the current Country Music Association "Entertainer of the Year," winner of the CMA "Album of the Year" and the American Music Awards "Fan's Choice Award," will perform songs he has written about his off-time in the Caribbean in a live one-hour special on Saturday, Jan. 22.

UNCUT: 60 MINUTES SPECIAL -- This limited series premiering exclusively on CMT boasts never-before-seen footage from "60 Minutes" celebrity interviews in revealing one-hour in-depth specials. The first installment features NASCAR royalty in DALE EARNHARDT JR UNCUT, premiering Friday, Jan. 28. Upcoming episodes profile Jimmy Buffett (Saturday, Feb. 19), Gretchen Wilson (Saturday, March 5), and Loretta Lynn (Thursday, April 14).

LYNYRD SKYNYRD'S SUPER BOWL SATURDAY NIGHT SPECIAL -- The night before the AFC and NFC champions battle it out on the field for the coveted Super Bowl XXXIX championship, CMT is throwing its own brand of tailgate party with Lynyrd Skynyrd, premiering live Saturday, Feb. 5. It's a pre-trophy celebration as Grammy nominated Texas rock & roll trio Los Lonely Boys and country star Jo Dee Messina appear as special guests.

BRAD PAISLEY'S MUDDI GRAS -- Amid the purple, green and gold clad revelers filling the streets of New Orleans for Mardi Gras will be a signature white Stetson worn by top-selling country star Brad Paisley. Named for his latest release "Mud on the Tires," Paisley's exclusive performance special BRAD PAISLEY'S MUDDI GRAS, premiering Friday, March 11 at 8:00-9:00 PM, ET/PT, originates from the New Orleans House of Blues.

CMT MUSIC AWARDS -- Country's biggest stars and fans collide for a night of magic as the 2005 CMT MUSIC AWARDS honors country music's elite for the year's most outstanding videos. Country music's only fan-voted awards -- and the only country music awards telecast from Nashville this year -- premieres live on Monday, April 11.

HISTORY OF SOUTHERN ROCK -- A CMT original two-hour documentary exploring the roots and legacy of Southern Rock giving backstage entree to the birth of a movement profiling pioneers such as the Allman Brothers Band, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Marshall Tucker Band, Wet Willie, and the Charlie Daniels Band among others. Exclusive interviews include the contemporary stars influenced by this movement. Premieres in June.

New Series:

MUZIK MAFIA TV: TELEVISON WITHOUT PREJUDICE -- Sold out stadiums, screaming fans, artistic drama, physical pain, Harleys and manicures -- it's life on the road with the MuzikMafia. Gretchen Wilson, Big & Rich, and their eclectic band of musical brothers star in this adventurous new original series premiering Saturday, Jan. 15. Celebrity guests include Tim McGraw, Usher, Willie Nelson, Keith Urban, Heart, DMC and Kanye West. In addition to Gretchen Wilson and Big & Rich, MUZIK MAFIA TV includes Cowboy Troy, a "cowboy rapper" from Dallas; Two Foot Fred who leads the pack onstage; songwriters James Otto and Jon Nicholson; visual artist Rachel Kice; blues guitar wizard Dean Hall, son of country legend Tom T. Hall; and others.

POPULARITY CONTEST -- What's it like to pack your bags and move from one of America's biggest cities to a tiny town in America's heartland -- leaving behind your big city profession and way of life? And how will residents of a small farming community react to newcomers who don't have the slightest clue about country living? In CMT's new original series, POPULARITY CONTEST, 10 city slickers chuck the bright lights and the big city to immerse themselves in small town life, as they compete to be named the town's "most popular" resident. In a dramatic twist, all of the town's 936 residents have a chance to win a piece of the grand prize. But this is more than a simple fish-out- of-water tale; in some amazing ways, the town and many of the contestants are changed for the better. Hosted by Jonathan Torrens, POPULARITY CONTEST premieres Monday, April 11.

Returning Series:

CMT CROSSROADS -- 2005's first new episode of the critically acclaimed series pairs up two of the most electrifying guitarists and performers to hit the stage -- rocker John Fogerty and country superstar Keith Urban. The one- hour episode premieres Saturday, Feb. 19. CMT CROSSROADS explores the common country music roots of artists from diverse genres. Pairings have included Elvis Costello and Lucinda Williams; Kid Rock and Hank Williams Jr.; ZZ Top and Brooks & Dunn; Elton John and Ryan Adams; Sheryl Crow and Willie Nelson; James Taylor and the Dixie Chicks; Ray Charles and Travis Tritt; John Mellencamp and Kenny Chesney; Melissa Etheridge and Dolly Parton; Pat Benatar and Martina McBride; Dave Matthews and Emmylou Harris; Toby Keith with Willie Nelson, Aerosmith's Steven Tyler and Joe Perry, Sammy Hagar, Run DMC's Darryl McDaniels, the Red Hot Chili Peppers' Chad Smith, Ted Nugent and jazz musician Wayman Tisdale; John Mayer and Brad Paisley; Heart and Wynonna; Lynyrd Skynyrd and Montgomery Gentry.

CMT'S GREATEST SERIES -- CMT tips its hat to the greatest in country music and Americana in this series of countdown specials. Upcoming episodes include CMT TOP 40 NASCAR MOMENTS premiering Friday, Jan. 28; CMT GREATEST MYTHS 2: MORE RUMORS, LEGENDS AND DOWNRIGHT LIES premiering Friday, Feb. 4; and CMT 20 GREATEST SONGS OF FAITH premiering Saturday, March 26.

CMT MOST SHOCKING -- In this popular series, CMT tells the real life stories of the most amazing, harrowing and sometimes terrifying events in country music, as well as intriguing stories straight from real life in America. Coming next, CMT MOST SHOCKING: LOVE STORIES premiering Valentine's Day, Monday, Feb. 14.

New Acquisition:

DUKES OF HAZZARD -- In 1979 the unmistakable voice of the ultimate music outlaw Waylon Jennings introduced America, in both theme song and show narration, to Bo, Luke, and Daisy Duke, and a new pop culture phenomenon exploded onto TV sets across the nation. THE DUKES OF HAZZARD became a mainstay in American homes and hearts for seven wildly successful seasons and featured guest appearances by country stars Loretta Lynn, the Oak Ridge Boys, Tammy Wynette, Buck Owens, Dottie West, and many more. CMT brings back THE DUKES OF HAZZARD for a whole new generation of Dukes fans and long-time devotees beginning Friday, Feb. 25. In addition, CMT explores this pop culture hit with the debut of CMT INSIDE FAME: THE DUKES OF HAZZARD featuring new interviews with original stars John Schneider (Bo Duke), Tom Wopat (Luke Duke), Catherine Bach (Daisy Duke), and James Best (Rosco P. Coltrane), also premiering Friday, Feb. 25.

CMT, America's No. 1 country music network, carries original programming, specials, and live concerts and events, as well as a mix of videos by established country music artists and new cutting-edge acts, including world premiere exclusive videos. Founded March 6, 1983, CMT, owned and operated by MTV Networks, reaches more than 76.9 million households in the United States. Go to country music's biggest web site at http://www.CMT.com.

SOURCE CMT
Web Site: http://www.cmt.com





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