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CMT's Smashing Glass Raises the Bar with Empowering New Series Live From the Fisher Center in Nashville

by Rich and Laura Lynch

CMT's new program Smashing Glass: A Celebration of the Groundbreaking Women of Music is and has the potential to be smashing! The first episode was recorded inside the beautiful and luxurious confines of The Fisher Center on the campus of Belmont University in Nashville, Tennessee on October 26th and premiered on CMT on November 15, 2023.


"Smashing Glass" made a smashing debut in 2023 on CMT.

CMT (Country Music Television) is an American TV network that launched back in 1983 as the first national channel devoted to country music, country music videos, concerts, specials and biographies of the genre's stars. Over time, CMT's repertoire expanded to include lifestyle/reality programming, sitcoms and more. A show such as Smashing Glass is a prime example of CMT going beyond country.

The premise of Smashing Glass: A Celebration of the Groundbreaking Women of Music - as the name implies - is to honor women who made their distinctive mark in an industry generally dominated by guys. The all-women production team will focus on females that blazed trails, broke records, smashed stereotypes and more.


Chris Janson got the party started at The Fisher Center.

The taping began with remarks from Billy Jean King - one of the world's top tennis players - who is also known as an advocate for women's equality and social justice. She received a standing ovation at The Fisher Center.

The first female to be recognized was Tanya Tucker. Tanya had an initial hit with "Delta Dawn" back in 1972 at the pretty precocious age of 13 years old. She would build on that success over the years winning a number of Grammys along the way. Tucker's latest album Sweet Western Sound which is a collaboration with Brandi Carlile has received critical acclaim proving this artist is still breaking new ground.


Clint Black paid a fitting tribute to Tanya Tucker.

On hand to honor Tanya was Chris Janson who performed "It's A Little To Late". Next, Clint Black said he was so honored to be singing "Texas (When I Die)" to her. Tucker was in one of the two boxes close to the stage to enjoy the show. She would come down to the spotlight to present the reflective "Bring Me Flowers Now".


Tanya Tucker performs on CMT's Smashing Glass.

The other trailblazing women of the night included Aretha Franklin aka the "Queen of Soul"; Sinéad O'Connor the controversial Irish singer, songwriter and activist who shaved her head in an effort not to be objectified; and, Tina Turner who enjoyed a successful solo career after leaving an abusive relationship. Their music was celebrated and performed by a quality cast of talent that included Mickey Guyton, Lucie Silvas and Amber Riley.


Patti LaBelle performs on CMT's Smashing Glass.

A combination of commentary with videos were used throughout the show to shine a light on each featured artist. Live performances added energy to the program. Highlights included Amber Riley presenting a riveting version of Aretha's "Respect". Lucie lived up to the challenge of singing "Nothing Compares 2 U" which became a signature song for Sinéad. Mickey Guyton - clad in a Tina-inspired gold sparkle dress saw the 4 time GRAMMY-nominee and CMT Next Women deliver an unforgettable tribute to the 'Queen of Rock & Roll' with a show-stopping take on "The Best".


Mickey Guyton, Lucie Silvas, Amber Riley and Ledisi on Smashing Glass.

The last woman to be hailed was Patti LaBelle. Clips and comments reminded us that LaBelle opened the doors for other artists to be themselves. Patti is often referred to as the "Godmother of Soul". In a career that has spanned seven decades, she has sold more than 50 million records worldwide. LaBelle has been inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame, the Hollywood Walk of Fame, the Black Music & Entertainment Walk of Fame, and the Apollo Theater Hall of Fame.

Ledisi - the GRAMMY-winning vocal powerhouse had honoree Patti LaBelle and the crowd on their feet singing along to her electrifying performance of the hit "New Attitude." Next, The War and Treaty - the acclaimed husband-wife duo lent their signature blend of soul, gospel, rock and blues to LaBelle's #1 hit "On My Own" bringing newfound emotion to the classic ballad in her honor. Finally, Patti showcased her impressive range and brought the curtain down on the high-flying inaugural edition of Smashing Glass - literally dropping the mic with an electrifying grand finale performance of her hit "Two Steps Away" - kicking off her shoes to put an exclamation on the night before the credits rolled.


The War and Treaty soulfully serenade Patti LaBelle at The Fisher Center.

Smashing Glass: A Celebration of the Groundbreaking Women of Music as it promised celebrated landmark ladies in an educational and entertaining format. There are so many women to be considered so if this program becomes popular it has the potential to be on CMT and smash some glass for years to come.

Prior to show there was a gala held in the lobby of the elegant Fisher Center which is located on the campus of Belmont University in Nashville, Tennessee. Dedicated in September of 2021, this multi-functional space has hosted a wide range of performances including dance productions, musicals, operas, plays and special events such as the CMT party and program. Please check their calendar for a full list of upcoming programs.


Tanya Tucker, Patti LaBelle and Billie Jean in Nashville.

Related Links: For more information on SMASHING GLASS and the other organizations mentioned please visit the following links - CMT.com | Tanya Tucker | Patti LaBelle | The Fisher Center


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